Insights from Our Experts

Clean First: Aligning Regulation with Environmental Goals

Power sector regulators will play a vital role in efforts to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the years ahead. Neither carbon taxes nor cap-and-trade policies alone will achieve the sizeable reductions of GHG emissions that are needed. RAP proposes that in regulatory decisions, clean  resources should get every reasonable preference over reso... Read More

Next Steps in Power Market Reform

China’s power sector is in the process of transitioning from a vertically integrated, state-owned monopoly to an unbundled, market-oriented industry with many of the characteristics of reformed power sectors in other parts of the world.  The process has been a prolonged one, having begun in the late 1980s when the government began permitting investment in elec... Read More

Improving Air Quality in Key Urban Areas

In the early stages of establishing systems for air quality regulation, China has an opportunity to develop programs and institutions that simultaneously address the interrelated problems of climate change and air pollution cost-effectively. An important step in this direction occurred in May 2010, when China’s highest decision-making body, the State Counci... Read More

Unlocking the Smart Grid’s Potential

The smart grid holds great potential but smart grid investments will be cost-effective only if their benefits outweigh the substantial costs. Regulators and consumers need to know how the smart grid will deliver these benefits and make electric bills more manageable. Consumers must have dynamic pricing options and automated controls. Policies must support cl... Read More

Roadmap 2050: Decarbonising Europe

In July 2008 the leaders of the EU and the G8 announced a goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by at least 80 percent below 1990 levels by 2050. The European Council set the objective for Europe at 80 to 95 percent below 1990 levels by 2050. The European Climate Foundation’s  Roadmap 2050 study shows that the transition to a fully reliable, fully ... Read More

Renewable Gains and Challenges

While non-hydro renewable resources still only account for some 2 percent of China’s installed generation fleet, renewable energy in China has skyrocketed over the last decade.  On average, installed wind capacity has doubled annually since 2006. China was responsible for nearly half of all global installations in 2010, surpassing the US to achieve a total... Read More

The Challenge to Meet EU’s 2020 Efficiency Goals

The European Union set a target of achieving 20 percent energy savings by 2020, thereby saving consumers money, increasing the security of supply, reducing emissions, and creating jobs. The EU faces several challenges with this goal and is taking steps to meet it, including revising the 2006 Energy Services Directive. In this context, RAP is helping policymakers... Read More

Modeling a More Efficient Power Plant

In 2003, RAP first developed the concept of the efficiency power plant (EPP), a set of integrated energy efficiency programs whose savings mirror the output of a conventional power plant.  Since then, we’ve worked with our Chinese partners to further refine the idea, develop funding sources and initiate pilot programs in six provinces. More recently, we’ve u... Read More

Helping States Meet Efficiency Targets

RAP recently helped Arizona regulators put their state on a long-term course to grow energy efficiency savings to levels as high as anywhere in the US, working with the Arizona Corporation Commission to achieve a 22% reduction in electricity demand by the year 2020 (based on 2010 numbers). To reach this goal, regulators had to develop a framework for utility inv... Read More

SEEing Action on Efficiency by 2020

RAP's Richard Sedano is staffing "Utility Motivation for Energy Efficiency," one of SEE Action's eight working groups. Under the supervision of US DOE and US EPA, SEE Action works to help states achieve maximum cost-effective energy efficiency improvements in homes, offices, buildings and industry by 2020. Mr. Sedano will help members understand the motivations ... Read More