WASHINGTON, DC — The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) has issued a report recommending that consumers could benefit if utility companies and regulators adopt energy efficiency programs. Proposed programs such as replacing and updating commercial and residential cooling systems could help consumers by ensuring reliable power delivery and reducing both electricity costs and pollutants emitted from power plants.

Steve Nadel, executive director of ACEEE and primary report author, said, “The proposed efficiency programs could reduce electric peak demand for participating customers by 5% to 15% without reducing comfort or service. Most of what we’re seeing right now in reaction to the California power crisis is emergency use reductions, many of which hurt the economy or cause people discomfort.”

Chris Neme, director of consulting services, Vermont Energy Investment Corporation and coauthor, stated, “Air conditioning and lighting systems spike the need for power on hot summer days in most areas of the country.

“Our report recommends increasing energy efficiency in the air condition-ing systems and commercial lighting systems. The report also provides detailed plans to ease program adoption by utilities and state governments. If adopted quickly, savings could be realized shortly thereafter.”

For more information, visit www. aceee. Org (website).

Publication date: 02/19/2001