Tag: News

Baby, it’s cold outside: how to save energy and keep warm this winter

ACEEE hopes your holidays were warm and bright—but let’s be real, for those in colder climates, the first months of the new year can be notoriously chilly. Plus, the great weakening of the Polar Vortex(link is external)means cold air will likely stick around.

So let’s talk about heating. Heating your home is an incredibly energy consuming task, and typically makes up around 35%-50% of your utility bill. Fortunately, there’s a lot that you can to do save energy and money while maximizing coziness. From five-minute fixes to easy DIY projects, here’s a list of ways to stay a little warmer and save some money as you begin the new year.

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VAEEC Elects New Officers of the Board


Chelsea Harnish, Executive Director

Virginia Energy Efficiency Council Elects New Officers of the Board                                                                                   

RICHMOND — The Board of Directors for the Virginia Energy Efficiency Council (VAEEC) elected new officers for the next two years:

  • Chair: David Koogler, Vice President of Member Services and External Affairs, Rappahannock Electric Cooperative
  • Vice Chair: John Morrill, Energy Manager, Arlington County
  • Secretary: Mark Jackson, Vice President of CHP Energy Solutions, Community Housing Partners
  • Treasurer: Bill Greenleaf, Individual Member (re-elected)

“I look forward to overseeing the Board’s efforts to continue progress that has been made to position the VAEEC as the leading authority on energy efficiency in the Commonwealth,” said David Koogler. “With the significant emphasis on energy efficiency recently provided by the Administration and the General Assembly, I am excited to be part of the board leadership team at a time when the VAEEC will have a significant role in engaging stakeholders to advance energy efficiency as a resource.”

This fall the Governor’s Administration released the Virginia Energy Plan, which included energy efficiency as one of five areas of focus, along with solar, onshore wind, offshore wind, energy storage, and electric vehicles/advanced transportation. The General Assembly also passed the Grid Transformation and Security Act of 2018, which included a commitment from Virginia’s two investor-owned utilities to spend more than $1 billion on energy efficiency programs over the next ten years.

“The combined expertise of our new slate of Officers shows the depth of energy efficiency qualifications that represent our combined membership,” said Executive Director, Chelsea Harnish. “We are pleased to have these talented leaders at the helm of the VAEEC at a time when Virginia expects to see expanding utility energy efficiency programs and growing interest by Virginia localities to implement their own programs in the coming year.”

The VAEEC Board and staff also recognize the outgoing Board Chair, David Steiner, D+R International, for his efforts over the last two years, which helped lay the foundation for where the organization is today.

“It has been a delight to see the advancement of energy efficiency in almost all realms of Virginia public life since the founding of the VAEEC in 2012,” said Steiner. “There is certainly more work to be done and this slate of leaders has the proven credentials to carry us forward.”

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Visit the VAEEC Press Room for images, information, and additional quotes.

About VAEEC:

Founded in 2012, the Virginia Energy Efficiency Council is the voice for the energy efficiency industry in the Commonwealth. We are a nonprofit headquartered in Richmond. Our members include Fortune 500 companies, small businesses, universities, nonprofits, local governments, state agencies, and utilities. The Council’s goal is to ensure energy efficiency is recognized as an integral part of Virginia’s economy.


Press Release_2019 Officers FINAL (PDF)

Renewables are getting cheaper but energy efficiency, on average, still costs utilities less

New data by Lazard, a financial advisory firm, shows that prices for renewable electricity declined again this year, continuing their downward trend. But the data, released last month, miss another critical clean energy resource. Energy efficiency–the kilowatt-hours we avoid by eliminating waste–remains, on average, our nation’s least-cost resource.

Efficiency also delivers a host of other benefits. It improves electric grid reliability and resilience, can target savings where and when needed the most, creates jobs, spurs other economic development, reduces customer utility bills, makes homes and buildings more comfortable, and reduces harmful pollution.

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Virginia energy transition hinges on traditionally conservative state board

Virginia lawmakers are expected to fill an open seat this month on a state board that could determine whether the state becomes a regional leader on renewable energy, energy efficiency and grid modernization.

“The State Corporation Commission is where the rubber meets the road,” says Cale Jaffe, director of the Environmental and Regulatory Law Clinic at the University of Virginia.

Government agencies and the Legislature can lay out rules for pollution control and energy generation, but it’s the commission that has the power to say ‘yea’ or ‘nay’ to related proposals by utilities.

Virginia’s Grid Modernization and Security Act (SB966) went into effect July 1.

“That legislation creates the possibility for clean energy wins, but doesn’t guarantee anything,” explains Will Cleveland, staff attorney with the Southern Environmental Law Center, an advocacy organization in Charlottesville. “The commission plays a critical role here.”

“The SCC exists to regulate the monopoly utilities in Virginia,” he continues. “But we have an odd tension here.”

Utility executives are required to maximize profits, but keep rates reasonable and service reliable for captive ratepayers, Cleveland explains.

Read more (Energy News)