Policy Recommendations

SWEEP supports a wide range of state and local policies that will increase the efficiency of energy use including the following:

Buildings:

  • State-of-the-art building energy codes based on the latest versions of the International Energy Conservation Code for new homes and ASHRAE 90.1 model standard for new commercial buildings.
  • Energy savings goals, ENERGY STAR product purchasing requirements, third party financing mechanisms, utilization of performance contracting and other policies to cut energy waste in public buildings.
  • Expanded utility energy efficiency programs including incentives for the adoption of all cost-effective efficiency measures.
  • Benchmarking and labeling the energy efficiency of homes and commercial buildings.
  • Minimum efficiency standards for appliances and other products not yet covered by federal efficiency standards.

 

Utilities:

  • Energy efficiency goals or standards for electric and gas utilities.
  • Performance-based financial incentives so that utility shareholders are not penalized when investor-owned utilities help their customers save energy.
  • Integrated resource planning and other techniques for identifying and pursuing cost-effective energy efficiency options in the context of utility resource planning.
  • Decoupling of utility sales and cost recovery.

 

Transportation:

  • Installation of public charging stations for electric vehicles (EVs).
  • Utility pricing strategies that encourage and reward EV owners for off-peak charging.
  • Acquisition of EVs by public fleets.
  • Sustainability and vehicle usage (VMT) reduction goals as part of regional transportation and land use plans.
  • Use of state gasoline taxes and vehicle registration fees for public transit and bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure.
  • Increased use of tolling, VMT fees and congestion pricing on highways.
  • Expansion of mass transit systems including express bus and bus rapid transit service.
  • Transit-oriented land use development.

 

Industry and Combined Heat & Power (CHP):

  • State programs that encourage industries to establish energy savings goals, recognize outstanding achievements, and provide technical assistance.
  • Interconnection standards, utility regulatory rules, and environmental permitting rules to facilitate the adoption of clean and efficient combined heat and power (cogeneration) systems.

 

Multiple Sectors:

  • State tax credits for consumers and businesses that purchase innovative energy efficiency measures such as electric and hybrid vehicles, achieve substantial energy savings through deep home retrofit, or construct highly energy-efficient new homes and commercial buildings.
  • Emissions standards and emissions trading and credit schemes that encourage and recognize the benefits of energy efficiency improvements as part of pollution reduction efforts.
  • Expanded funding for energy efficiency education, training, demonstration, and technical assistance.
  • Financing programs for all types of energy efficiency upgrades.

 

SWEEP also supports combining individual policies into an integrated market transformation strategy.