Posts By Rick Barnett


Posted on: March 7, 2016
The 1980 USDOE report (DOE/PE-0020), “Low Energy Futures for the United States” evaluated US efficiency programs, and concluded that the country was moving toward a point where “efficiency improvements provide primary fuel savings that more than offset the growth in the demand for energy services” (page 20).  Numerous other studies ... more...
Filed under: Policy, Regulatory & Legal
Posted on: January 21, 2016
The 1980 USDOE report (DOE/PE-0020), “Low Energy Futures for the United States” painted a cheery picture, where “efficiency improvements provide primary fuel savings that more than offset the growth in the demand for energy services” (page 20). To move toward this energy-balanced future, efficiency programs were established across the US. ... more...
Filed under: Asset Management
Posted on: September 25, 2015
Residential energy codes were established to cut energy use by strengthening or “weatherizing” the barrier between outside and conditioned interior space.  Weatherization reduces energy for “space conditioning”, the largest part of residential energy use, and the least affected by US efficiency programs.  Weatherization products are typically installed as a system, ... more...
Filed under: Environmental, Emissions & Carbon Management
Posted on: May 12, 2015
Untitled Document Continuing from previous posts about possible over-crediting for estimated energy savings, I’ve taken a closer look at the method used by regulatory agencies to approve customer-funded efficiency programs. Intertwined with a long-standing flow of public dollars to promote energy conservation, many US utilities include efficiency in their customer-funded ... more...
Filed under: Energy Efficiency
Posted on: April 8, 2015
Utility programs to engage energy customers about their use of energy have gone from pilot phase to standard practice over the last ten years. Unless the electricity stops flowing, few people think about being an energy customer, nor do they ask for information about their consumption patterns. Energy customers have ... more...
Filed under: Customer Care
Posted on: March 10, 2015
“Saving” is a popular marketing pitch that emerged with rising consumption: “save 50% when you buy 3”, “save time when you buy our gadget”, “save energy with our efficient furnace”, etc. These promises are made to motivate consumers to buy products. Money placed in a savings account is available for ... more...
Filed under: Energy Efficiency
Posted on: February 13, 2015
Another chapter of the global climate effort recently concluded in Lima, Peru, as a warm-up for a more-targeted meeting in Paris, June, 2015.  Climate action advocates show subdued optimism for Paris:  although political goals are more visible, no action plan is on the table, that would buffer rising global carbon ... more...
Filed under: Environmental, Emissions & Carbon Management
Posted on: September 29, 2014
The utility industry is confronted with a condition often called “disruptive challenges”. Introduced by the Edison Electric Institute’s 2013 report (“Disruptive Challenges: Financial Implications and Strategic Responses to a Changing Retail Electric Business”), stories about disruption are regularly found in utility news. An informative Energy Central post from Andres Carvallo ... more...
Filed under: Distributed Generation
Posted on: August 20, 2014
On 6/25/13, the Obama administration released their "Climate Action Plan" (CAP). This re-confirmed the nation's 2020 goal from the 2009 Copenhagen Accord, to reduce carbon emissions to a level 17% below 2005. Some have criticized the Copenhagen goal for being too modest, particularly when compared to the recently adopted European ... more...
Filed under: Environmental, Emissions & Carbon Management
Posted on: June 19, 2014
The largest part of residential energy consumption (generally considered around 40%) maintains interior comfort regardless of the weather. Energy used to create this comfort is a function of how well inside is separated from outside. The separation zone, or "thermal shell", is the insulating layer around conditioned interior space. Programs ... more...
Filed under: Energy Efficiency

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