Renovating Regulation to Electrify Buildings: A Guide for the Handy Regulator
New technologies, from air source heat pumps to smart thermostats, are changing the way we produce and use energy — making it cheaper and more efficient to electrify heat and hot water in buildings. But in many cases, existing energy policies and regulatory structures create unnecessary barriers to electrification. A new guidebook from RAP and Synapse Energy Economics details how the regulatory framework can be updated to realize the full potential of electrified, flexible, grid-integrated buildings.
In an interactive webinar, the guidebook’s co-authors discussed some of the regulatory “renovation projects” that are key to the transition to electrification:
- Ensuring that building electrification is equitable and that low-income customers are fairly and affordably served;
- Enabling grid integration of buildings so their electricity demand can be actively managed, taking advantage of renewable energy at times when it is most abundant;
- Revamping energy efficiency resource standards and energy efficiency program design to make them fuel-neutral;
- Modernizing building codes and performance standards; and
- Revisiting current approaches to gas line extension.
The webinar highlighted options to address all these areas, unlocking the benefits of building electrification to customers, the power system and the environment.