By: Joe Cullen, Director of Policy & State Outreach 

On August 20, 2019, the Building Performance Association (BPA) and the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) filed joint comments before the West Virginia Public Service Commission highlighting the value of energy efficiency and demand response (EE/DR) programs and common-sense cost-effectiveness testing approaches in support of proposed Appalachian Power Company EE/DR programs.

BPA and ACEEE worked closely with Energy Efficient West  Virginia to emphasize what we witness in states across the country: that properly designed and implemented energy efficiency and demand response (EE/DR) programs save money, create jobs, and benefit all customers. West Virginia is currently ranked 48th in the nation among states in per capita employment in energy efficiency businesses and industries. BPA and ACEEE’s comments “urged the Commission to consider energy efficiency’s critical role in job creation in your deliberations.”

BPA and ACEEE’s comments also stressed a related benefit of EE/DR programs – that “energy efficiency also provides significant and quantifiable health benefits.” The comments focused on two recent seminal reports: Saving Energy, Saving Lives: The Health Impacts of Avoiding Power P... and the Energy-Plus-Health Playbook. Both Reports describe several EE/DR program models that could easily be adopted or deployed in West Virginia.

BPA continues to work with members and affiliates like Energy Efficient West Virginia and local contractors who provide the “nuts and bolts” of efficiency upgrades to homes and buildings across Appalachia and the U.S. We are proud of the high-quality services that members and affiliates deliver and the skilled jobs that they create in communities in West Virginia and across the country. ACEEE is a valued and critical partner as we work together to support EE/DR programs in the states.

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Comment by Franco Oyuela on September 3, 2019 at 3:07pm

Ways to Get Better HVAC Energy Efficiency.

Before we get started, let’s clear up some frequently used terms about HVAC energy efficiency. These ratings will help you better understand what you’re getting out of your temperature control system.

This is the ratio of cooling output in BTU (British thermal units) divided by electricity usage in kilowatt hours. The higher the number, the more HVAC energy efficiency it has. The SEER rating uses real seasonal cooling, not laboratory conditions.

This number is like SEER except it doesn’t use seasonal averages, but instead calculates the ratio from strict laboratory conditions. A higher number reveals better HVAC energy efficiency.

This is a ratio for heat pump efficiency. Heat pumps can cycle in both directions to produce heat and cool air. This measures the total space heating needed in BTU over total electricity used by

Programmable controls and thermostat
Forgot to turn down the thermostat when no one’s in the office? Everyone’s done it. Increase HVAC energy efficiency with an automated system that controls lights and the thermostat. You can always adjust so that the conditions go on and off at your schedule. Replacing old lights with compact fluorescent or LED bulbs will also help save power.

Invest in energy efficient HVAC equipment
You can get double or triple return on investment if you’re replacing a system that’s at least 10 years old. Newer models have higher SEER ratings, which means more HVAC energy efficiency. Today’s SEER ratings are around 14 to 18, a significant improvement over units built a decade ago. Also, look out for Energy Star rated models, which adhere to strict guidelines.

pump in kilowatt-hours. A higher number indicates a more efficient heat pump.

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