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Despite Recession, States Continue to Focus on Energy Efficiency
The current economic downturn is not sidetracking state-level efforts to make the most of energy efficiency as the cheapest, cleanest and quickest of all energy resources, according to a 50-state scorecard on energy efficiency policies, programs, and practices from the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE).
The 2009 State Energy Efficiency Scorecard, which ranks states in six categories, concludes that the 10 states doing the most to implement energy efficiency are: California, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Oregon, New York, Vermont, Washington, Minnesota, Rhode Island and Maine.
“States continue to raise the bar with comprehensive strategies to improve efficiency in their buildings, industry, and transportation systems,” says Maggie Eldridge, ACEEE research associate and lead author of the report.
Several states have made strong moves up in the ranks from 2008 to 2009, including: Maine (up from 19 to 10), Colorado (up from 24 to 16), Delaware (up from 32 to 20), District of Columbia (up from 30 to a tie for 20), South Dakota (up from 47 to 36) and Tennessee (up from 46 to 38).
According to ACEEE, the states comprising the group that "most needs to improve" are (with ties): Arkansas (41), Missouri (41), Louisiana (41), Georgia (44), Alaska (45), West Virginia (45), Nebraska (47), Alabama (48), Mississippi (49), North Dakota (49), and Wyoming (51).
The 2009 report is ACEEE’s third edition of its annual state-by-state ranking on the adoption and implementation of energy efficiency policies, which aims to recognize leadership among the states and identify best practices. The scorecard examines six state energy efficiency policy areas: utility-sector and public benefits programs and policies, transportation polices, building energy codes, combined heat and power, state government initiatives, and appliance efficiency standards. States can earn up to 50 possible points in these six policy areas combined.