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Energy Newsbriefs Blog

This current awareness service is prepared by the WSU Energy Program Library with funding from the U.S. Department of Energy State Energy Program. This information is provided for energy professionals and interested members of the public to highlight recent energy-related news, articles, and reports that discuss energy efficiency, energy conservation, and renewable sources of energy in engineering and policy circles.


Category: Energy Efficiency

Energy Efficiency

HVAC Contractors Prepare for DOE Efficiency Mandates

Air Conditioning/Heating/Refrigeration News, Oct. 18, 2015, by Joanna R. Turpin.

"At the beginning of the year, the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) minimum efficiency standards for residential air conditioners and heat pumps went into effect, dividing the country into three regions — North, South, and Southwest. The standards dictate that contractors in the latter two regions are allowed to install 13-SEER heat pumps and air conditioners until mid-2016 (or until supplies run out); then, they must only offer 14-SEER (or higher) equipment. Many HVAC distributors in those regions stocked up on 13-SEER equipment ahead of the deadline and are happy to see that their bets paid off as the inventory flew off the shelves."

Fact Sheet: Jobs in Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (2015)

Environmental and Energy Study Institute, Nov. 6, 2015.

"This fact sheet examines employment in the renewable energy and energy efficiency sectors in the United States and around the world."

Marijuana Grow Houses Trigger 7 Summer Outages for Pacific Power

Utility Dive, Nov. 6, 2015, by Robert Walton.

"Pacific Power is urging would-be home growers to consult with the utility before starting up their marijuana operations, same as they should any time a customer intends to significantly increase their power load."

2015 State Energy Efficiency Scorecard

American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE), Oct. 21, 2015. (Need to complete free registration to view full report.)

"For the past nine years, the State Energy Efficiency Scorecard has measured the progress of state policies and programs that save energy while also benefiting the environment and promoting economic growth. We use data vetted by state energy officials to rank states in six categories—utility programs, transportation, building energy codes, combined heat and power, state initiatives, and appliance standards."

Energy Star Honors 2015’s Most Efficient Geothermal Units

Air Conditioning, Heating & Refrigeration News, Sep. 28, 2015, by Herb Woerpel.

"Every year, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) Energy Star program acknowledges products it deems “Most Efficient” in the marketplace. This effort identifies leading products among those that qualify for Energy Star designation in numerous product categories. Here is a snapshot of Energy Star’s Most Efficient Geothermal Heat Pumps of 2015."

Steel Mill Energy Audits Include Air Compressor Performance Testing

Compressed Air Best Practices, Oct. 2015, by Eric Lee.

"EnSave, an energy auditing company based in Richmond, Vermont, recently performed compressed air audits at two facilities of a leading U.S. steel manufacturer. Both plants are mills that melt, cast, and roll steel to produce a variety of products, including: rebar, merchant bar, steel flats, rounds, fence posts, channel bar, steel channels, steel angles, structural angles and structural channels."

Ford in Europe Factories Save Enough Energy to Power Oxford for a Year

Automotive World, Oct. 15, 2015.

"Ford in Europe is on course to achieve a reduction in energy usage of 25 per cent from 2011 to 2016 per vehicle produced, following investments of €23 million specifically targeting energy waste."

Building Climate Resilience in Native American Communities

Clean Energy Finance Forum, Oct. 9, 2015, by Kat Friedrich.

"In the Navajo Nation, electricity may be a fragile commodity as climate change intensifies. Other tribes in the United States face similar energy quandaries. The United States Department of Energy (DOE) announced on Sept. 2 that it is requesting applications to co-fund renewable energy, energy efficiency, and combined heat and power to help increase the climate resilience of indigenous communities. The available funding is estimated to total around $4-6 million. Applications are due by Dec. 10."

Energy Use Down, Even Where Economy is Up, Says IEA Energy Efficiency Market Report

Energy Efficiency Markets, Oct. 13, 2015, by Elisa Wood.

"It’s an anomaly, a good one. Energy use is down, even where economic activity is up. That’s the word from the latest report on energy efficiency markets from the International Energy Agency."

Includes link to the full IEA report - "Energy Efficiency Market Report 2015".

Smart Thermostat Initiatives Reveal Exciting New Horizons for Energy Efficiency Programs

American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy, Oct. 6, 2015, by Steven Nadel.

"Today, Commonwealth Edison, several smart thermostat manufacturers, and the Environmental Law and Policy Center announced a major new initiative with a target to install one million smart thermostats in the homes of Commonwealth Edison customers over five years. Commonwealth Edison (commonly called ComEd) serves northern Illinois, including the Chicago metropolitan area. To start, the new smart thermostats will include the Nest and ecobee3, but over time additional manufacturers will be added."
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