Harcourt Brown & Carey spends a lot of time working with, developing, refining and reporting on the efficacy of utility-based demand side management programs (of course HB&C’s focus is always finance-based). So it was very encouraging today to read some findings provided in a recent Greentech Media article point to the fact that while real US GDP has continued to rise since the recession-based dip in 2007, overall demand of retail electricity has decreased year over year.
It’s estimated that utility-based programs decreased a total of 146 terawatt-hours in overall demand, and that’s just in 2014. This estimate also leaves out third party-based, and customer-funded improvements, so while the utilities may be estimating on the high end, there’s a whole swath of improvements not captured in this estimate, which leads me to believe the 146 terawatts may be a good estimate for nation-wide demand reduction.
Other encouraging (for the climate and economy) shifts in our economy include a trend away from coal powered energy generation, continued uptake and adoption of renewable energy technologies on a utility and consumer scale, and the impending Clean Power Plan and our Paris Climate Agreement commitments.
Is your utility or company interested in exploring ways to integrate financing to improve adoption of energy efficiency or renewable energy technologies? Let us know!