Energy efficiency investment needed more than ever.

Friday, August 3, 2012

 

It is disappointing that the editorial team at the Chronicle Herald has argued that the loss of two large electricity consumers (Bowater and Newpage) should result in funding reductions for energy efficiency programs.

In fact, the opposite is true.

The loss of the mills will mean that the cost of maintaining our electrical grid will be borne by fewer and fewer customers, resulting in higher rates.  Energy efficiency programs target wasted energy, and with higher rates, that wasted energy becomes even more costly to businesses and homeowners.

The fact remains that energy efficiency is one of the best investments for the ratepayers dollar.  Almost $3 of savings in future energy purchases are avoided for every dollar spent on energy efficiency.  Not only is it a good investment, but there are secondary economic benefits to Nova Scotia.   Funds spent on energy efficiency are spent locally, while the majority of funds spent on fossil fuels leave NS. 

When energy efficiency investments became mandated in NS, there was broad support from stakeholders on the economic principles of energy efficiency, and those principals remain in the face of mill closures. 

There is more to energy efficiency than the total number of kilowatt hours consumed. Energy efficiency helps home owners become more resilient and businesses become more competitive in the face of higher fossil prices.

With large customers shutting down and fossil fuels become increasingly scarce, Nova Scotians need energy efficiency more than ever.

 

Daniel Roscoe
Chief Operating Officer
Scotian WindFields Inc.