Using Energy Efficiency to Meet Environmental Goals
At a State Workshop on Innovations in Energy Efficiency Policy hosted by the National Governors Association, Ken Colburn provided a high-level overview of intersecting energy and environmental issues, such as the impact of water constraints on energy production, national ambient air quality standards, managing the transition to renewable energy sources, and the multiple benefits of energy efficiency. In light of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) upcoming 111(d) regulations on carbon dioxide emissions from existing power plants, Mr. Colburn also explores the interaction of energy efficiency with air and water quality. In addition to outlining overarching considerations when preparing for 111(d), he encourages approaching the new regulations as an opportunity for “re-inventing” air quality regulation using a method of integrated, multi-pollutant planning for energy and air quality (IMPEAQ). This process blends integrated resource planning concepts from the energy world with state implementation planning concepts from the environmental arena. The integrated approach should lead to greater use of energy efficiency, which reduces multiple pollutants and addresses energy reliability standards at a lower overall cost than traditional pollution control measures.