Programs that encourage energy efficiency and renewable energy could reduce the demand for natural gas enough to cause a 10 percent to 20 percent drop in wholesale natural gas prices, according to a recent study by the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) and Energy and Environmental Analysis Inc.

The study also suggests that U.S. natural gas consumption could be reduced by 1.1 percent within the next year through the use of energy efficiency. By 2008, natural gas consumption could be reduced by 5.5 percent by using a combination of energy efficiency and renewable energy. According to the study, by easing supply constraints, these minor reductions in demand could yield significant price reductions, and consumers and businesses could exceed $75 billion in savings over the next five years.

— by J.J. Siegel

Publication date: 09/22/2003