This toolkit describes how to strengthen residential energy efficiency program outreach and marketing efforts through data-driven, tailored efforts to change behaviors. One of the greatest challenges facing the residential energy efficiency market is motivating people to take steps to save energy. This toolkit provides guidance, resources, and examples for applying community-based social marketing (CBSM) to increase the number of homes that are energy efficient.
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This report consists of a literature review and in-depth interviews with subject matter experts in the Home Performance with ENERGY STAR (HPwES) program area. The goal was to compare Delaware Sustainable Energy Utility (DESEU) HPwES Programs with peer-programs across the United States. The report also identifies key metrics and emerging trends regarding program design.
This case study highlights how EmPOWER Maryland’s low-income programs have helped to reduce or eliminate the up-front costs of efficiency upgrades, minimize administrative burden on participants, and provide coordinated services through a statewide network of trusted partners. Under the Multifamily Energy Efficiency and Housing Affordability EmPOWER Program, owners of affordable multifamily housing receive loans and grants with flexible terms for the purchase and installation of a variety of energy improvements, from lighting and appliances to insulation and HVAC systems.
The catalog is a compilation of state and local energy efficiency potential studies to serve as a resource for energy planners and as a baseline for future analyses.
This paper is a baseline assessment of electric and natural gas energy efficiency programs that target low-income households in the largest metropolitan areas in the country. ACEEE surveyed over 70 electric and natural gas utilities on their 2015 low-income program spending, energy savings, customer participation, and best practices.
This presentation includes examples of 16 programs' creative marketing materials. The Better Buildings Residential Network held a March Madness tournament to find the most creative residential energy efficiency messages during March Peer Exchange Calls. Sixteen marketing campaigns were featured in a bracket challenge on the calls, and participants made their picks. Residential Network member the Fuel Fund of Maryland was chosen as the winning message for its Watt Watchers campaign.
This report updates ACEEE's 2013 assessment of multifamily energy efficiency programs in US metropolitan areas with the most multifamily households. Using housing, policy, and utility-sector data from 2014 and 2015, this report documents how these programs have changed in the context of dynamic housing markets and statewide policy environments. The report also offers an analysis of the number, spending, offerings, and targeted participants of current programs and their potential for further expansion.
The Regional Evaluation, Measurement and Verification Forum (EM&V Forum) works to support use and transparency of current best practices in evaluation, measurement, verification, and reporting of energy and demand savings, costs, avoided emissions and other impacts of energy efficiency, while also advancing the development of strategies and tools to meet evolving policy needs for efficiency.
Each ResStock fact sheet presents the potential for residential energy and utility bill savings for the state. The top ten energy savings home improvements are highlighted.
This report examines how State Energy Offices and state-level partners are supporting growth and uptake of Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy (C-PACE) financing around the country. The report offers examples, insights, and strategies for State Energy Offices, green banks, state financing agencies, and other public and private entities to catalyze, accelerate, organize, and expand C-PACE markets.
This webcast in a multi-part series highlighting efforts by state and local agencies, non-profits, and utilities to bring energy efficiency and renewable energy (EE/RE) to low-income communities.
This report is a guide to all customer-facing financing products—products offered by a lender directly to a borrower—used to pay for energy efficiency. Intended for state and local governments that are deciding whether to start a new program, tune up and existing program, or create a Green Bank, it provides information on the full range of financing product options for target participants, the tradeoffs of various products, and potential advantages and disadvantages for different types of customers.
This summary from a Better Buildings Residential Network peer exchange call focused on communicating non-energy benefits that homeowners and building owners are most interested in. Speakers include Elevate Energy, Green & Healthy Homes Initiative, and Skumatz Economic Research Associates, Inc.
The report, based on U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data and a survey of tens of thousands of businesses across the country, provides detailed breakdowns of clean energy jobs not available previously, and it was developed and released in connection with a major U.S. Department of Energy study of all energy jobs in America.
This report discusses indoor air quality issues, including: wildfire smoke, dampness, and mold, and the effect of energy efficiency upgrades on these health-related issues. The report describes current state policies and programs in these areas, highlighting approaches for consideration by other jurisdictions.
Energy burden is the percentage of household income spent on home energy bills. In this report, ACEEE, along with the Energy Efficiency for All coalition, measures the energy burden of households in 48 of the largest American cities. The report finds that low-income, African-American, Latino, low-income multifamily, and renter households all spend a greater proportion of their income on utilities than the average family. The report also identifies energy efficiency as an underutilized strategy that can help reduce high energy burdens by as much as 30%. Given this potential, the report goes on to describe policies and programs to ramp up energy efficiency investments in low-income and underserved communities.
Residential air-source heat pumps (ASHP) are a heating and air-conditioning technology that use electricity to provide a combination of space heating and cooling to homes. A new generation of ASHPs has come to market over the past five years. This report evaluates the key market barriers as well as potential opportunities to leverage. Based on an assessment of the regional ASHP market, it is clear that while ASHPs have established a viable and growing market, there remains a significant opportunity to further accelerate adoption of the technology and in the process achieve energy and cost savings to the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic region.
This summary from a Better Buildings Residential Network peer exchange call focused on how to assess, reassess, and initiate organization partnerships.
The Regional Roundup of Energy Efficiency Policy is intended to give policymakers, regulators, efficiency proponents, program administrators and other stakeholders a comparative view of the progress of energy efficiency policies and programs across the Northeast/Mid-Atlantic region. Along with state-level highlights, the report examines regional trends and shared challenges in harnessing the potential of energy efficiency to meet today’s pressing energy and environmental challenges.
This report looks into residential lighting savings assumptions found in Technical Reference Manuals (TRMs) throughout the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions to understand what values were being used for key metrics such as hours of use, delta watt, and measure life. It provides the opportunity to view completed Standardized Methods Forms to compare evaluation methodology and results.
This guide for states highlights energy efficiency as a least-cost strategy to meet air pollution reduction and other policy objectives, including energy affordability and reliability. It presents established policy and program “pathways” to advance demand-side energy efficiency.
This report identifies sustainable funding sources for asthma-related home interventions. It examines the business case and return on investment for interventions that remedy triggers that can exacerbate asthma.
This report represents NEEP’s annual assessment of the major policy developments of 2014, as well as its look into the immediate future, where NEEP gauge states’ progress toward capturing cost-effective energy efficiency as a first-order resource. While looking at the region as a whole, NEEP also provides summary and analysis of some of the biggest building energy efficiency successes and setbacks from Maine to Maryland — including significant energy efficiency legislation and regulations and changes in funding levels for energy efficiency programs.
This Guide is designed to help state and local policymakers to take full advantage of new policy developments by providing them with a comprehensive set of tools to support launching or accelerating residential energy efficiency programs. The Guide focuses on four categories of policies that have proven particularly effective in providing a framework within which residential energy efficiency programs can thrive: incentives and financing, making the value of energy efficiency visible in the real estate market, data access and standardization, and supporting utility system procurement of energy efficiency.
This summary from a Better Buildings Residential Network peer exchange call focused on challenges and strategies for working in cold climates.
The Guide to Action provides in-depth information about over a dozen policies and programs that states are using to meet their energy, environmental, and economic objectives with energy efficiency, renewable energy, and combined heat and power. Each policy description is based on states’ experiences in designing and implementing policies, as documented in existing literature and shared through peer-exchange opportunities provided to states by EPA’s State Climate and Energy Program.
Energy efficiency collaboratives vary greatly and are typically designed for a specific jurisdiction, making them hard to compare side by side. This guide seeks to highlight a few common elements and draw conclusions on the overall effectiveness of specific characteristics of collaboratives. This guide defines and examines four different types of collaboratives in terms of their origin, scope, decision-making method, membership, duration, available resources, and how they interact with and influence their respective commissions.
This report lays the groundwork for a dialogue to explore regulatory and policy mechanisms for ensuring that efficiency financing initiatives provide value for society and protection for consumers. Through case studies of Connecticut, New York, Massachusetts, California, and Maryland, it explores emerging issues that jurisdictions will need to tackle when considering an increased reliance on financing.
This guide identifies 12 best practices for policymakers, regulators, and program administrators to help building owners invest to increase the energy efficiency of multifamily affordable housing.
The benefits of energy efficiency extend beyond energy savings. Homes, commercial buildings, and industrial facilities gain comfort, health, and safety benefits from energy efficiency programs. Additional benefits for businesses include savings on maintenance, materials, and the costs of regulatory compliance. On the supply side, electric utilities enjoy reduced system costs. Focusing on the residential, business, and utility sectors, this report examines each of these multiple benefits, their role in program marketing, and current best practices for including them in cost-effectiveness testing.
A number of states are beginning to recognize Demand Reduction Induced Price Effects (DRIPE) as a real, quantifiable benefit of energy efficiency and demand response programs. DRIPE is a measurement of the value of demand reductions in terms of the decrease in wholesale energy prices, resulting in lower total expenditures on electricity or natural gas across a given grid. This paper reviews the existing knowledge and experience from select U.S. states regarding DRIPE (including New York and Ohio), and the potential for expanded application of the concept of DRIPE by regulators.
This summary from a Better Buildings Residential Network peer exchange call focused on marketing techniques for lower income and other underrepresented populations.
Among the many benefits ascribed to energy efficiency is the fact that it can help create jobs. Although this is often used to motivate investments in efficiency programs, verifying job creation benefits is more complicated than it might seem at first. This paper identifies some of the issues that contribute to a lack of consistency in attempts to verify efficiency-related job creation. It then proposes an analytically rigorous and tractable framework for program evaluators to use in future assessments.
During the 2014 legislative session, the Maryland General Assembly passed Senate Bill 985 (Chapter 365 of the 2014 Laws of Maryland) entitled “Maryland Clean Energy Center—Green Banks & Clean Bank Financing Study,” which directed MCEC to study the feasibility of developing a green bank for the State of Maryland. This study focuses primarily on the role of green banks in financing renewable energy and energy efficiency and on the potential need for a green bank in Maryland.
Community-Based Social Marketing
This webcast provides an overview of community-based social marketing and provides examples from programs that have used it.
This report analyzes and develops estimates of non-energy impacts that could be included in cost effectiveness analyses for the EmPOWER Maryland energy efficiency programs. Four non-energy benefits are included in this analysis: air emissions, comfort, commercial operations and maintenance (O&M), and utility bill arrearages. In all four cases, a recommended value and methods for including them in future EMPOWER costs effectiveness analyses are provided.
This summary from a Better Buildings Residential Network peer exchange call focused on collaborating with Efficiency First chapters and other trade organizations effectively.
There are more than 17 million multifamily households nationwide, yet they remain a significant and mostly untapped opportunity for energy efficiency gains. Many cities and states that have embraced energy retrofitting as a job creator and boon to both the environment and economy have yet to address potential savings in multifamily properties, primarily because of obstacles not faced by single family and commercial properties. This paper discusses two barriers -- a lack of information and financing -- that stand in the way of multifamily energy retrofits.
This paper found that improved health outcomes and more stable, productive homes in primarily African American, low-income neighborhoods are related to the mitigation of asthma triggers and home-based environmental health hazards and that upstream investments in low-income housing have the potential for generating sustainable returns on investment and cost savings related to improved health, productivity gains, and wealth retention due to energy conservation.
This study is a review of non-energy benefits related to residential weatherization programs. The study estimates the value, in dollar and percentage terms, of non-energy benefits from weatherization programs, and summarizes the ranges and typical values for non-energy benefits. Recommendations for a non-energy benefits strategy for Maryland are provided.
This summary from a Better Buildings Residential Network peer exchange call focused on how loan performance data is tracked and analyzed, and what the data shows.
The document provides best practices and guidance for conducting the energy analysis required for multifamily (MF) building energy improvement projects funded by the various programs of the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development. The intended audience includes energy auditors, building owners and operators, contractors, designers, architects, engineers, and energy efficiency consultants and program staff.
The Small Town Energy Program (STEP) toolkit gives a complete overview of STEP from planning to implementation. It also includes access to a wide variety of materials developed by the program, including: local asset materials, partner materials, personnel materials, program administrative materials, outreach materials, and surveys. STEP has posted these toolkit documents with the hope that it will assist other small towns and communities in building and running more energy efficiency programs.
STEP was developed with a mission to "create a model community energy transformation program that serves as a roadmap for other small towns across the U.S." This final technical report summarizes the program's comprehensive energy evaluations for homes.
An assembly of all the key elements that went into the design and delivery of STEP -- formerly STEP-UP, a University Park, Maryland, Better Buildings Neighborhood Program partner.
Exploring Power Purchase Agreements: The Basics, Part 1
On Maryland's Home Performance with ENERGY STAR website, homeowners can review their contractor and experience. These customer reviews, along with contractors' accreditations and services, are published on the website as part of each contractor's information page. Users of the website can search for contractors and sort the results based on homeowner ratings and by geographical location.
This report identifies issues associated with developing a national evaluation, measurement, and verification (EM&V) standard for end-use, non-transportation, energy efficiency activities.
This report helps policymakers understand how electric and natural gas utilities can achieve greater efficiency by establishing numeric energy savings targets and goals for energy efficiency programs.
This report identifies and discusses factors that should be considered in evaluating model choices for administering and implementing ratepayer funded energy efficiency programs.
This report summarizes existing research and discusses current practices, opportunities, and barriers to coordinating energy efficiency and demand response programs.
This report describes the effects of utility spending on efficiency programs, how those effects could constitute barriers to investment in energy efficiency, and how policy mechanisms can reduce these barriers.
The purpose of this study is to furnish comprehensive information on ratepayer-funded low-income energy programs. This study includes information on and analysis of the energy needs of low-income households, the legal and regulatory framework supporting ratepayer-funded programs, program design options, and the findings from evaluations of program effectiveness.