Energy Efficiency in Maryland
Reducing our energy use is the easiest and cheapest way to cut energy bills and reduce pollution from the electric sector. Energy efficiency means using less energy to provide the same service. Every home, office, factory, and public building can cut energy waste by installing advanced lighting, heating and cooling systems, and energy efficient appliances.
Ensuring that buildings hold warm or cool air longer by sealing any gaps where air is lost and adding insulation, using more energy efficient appliances and technologies, and improving lighting are all ways to improve energy efficiency.
Saving energy is our cheapest and easiest option to keep electricity costs low, making it the least-cost energy resource we have. Many of our buildings were constructed before advanced energy building codes, so there are significant energy savings to be gained through energy efficiency updates.
Maryland ratepayers have benefited from a robust portfolio of energy efficiency programs since passage of the EmPOWER Act in 2008, saving consumers over $4 billion on their energy bills and over 5 million megawatt hours (MWh).
Increasing Energy Efficiency Reduces Pollution and Gives Maryland Cleaner Air and Water
Over 40% of Maryland’s electricity still comes from coal-burning power plants that emit mercury, arsenic, and lead. By reducing our consumption of energy through efficiency improvements, we’ll have a healthier Maryland.
Energy Efficiency Creates Jobs and Benefits Maryland’s Economy
Energy efficiency creates jobs and small businesses that weatherize buildings, manufacture components, sell efficient products and construct new buildings. Energy efficient buildings are more comfortable and have a higher resale value.
The Maryland Efficiency First Coalition, a coalition of home performance businesses, estimates that the EmPower Maryland supports over 1,500 private sector jobs in the Home Improvement industry alone.
Maryland’s Energy Efficiency Program
In June of 2015 Maryland’s Public Service Commission issued an order extending the state’s successful EmPOWER Maryland programs that requires the state’s utilities to achieve annual energy savings through their energy efficiency programs ramping up to 2% incremental savings per year.
Maryland is now a national leader on energy efficiency, on par with nation-leading states like Massachusetts, California, and Vermont.
Maryland should continue its progress with this popular program and work towards the annual electric energy efficiency goal of 2% savings rate in retail electricity sales.