Transforming the Rural Energy Economy through Energy Efficiency and Distributed Energy Resources
The electric power sector is undergoing rapid transformation, in part because of the increased use of technologies that can be located closer to the customer, such as solar power, energy storage, and electric vehicles. Because of its reliability and low cost, energy efficiency can help scale up clean energy technologies as the market continues to develop. This fact sheet describes how coordinating energy efficiency and renewable energy resources can reduce energy burdens, increase local ownership of electricity generation, and reduce a building’s energy use to make it possible for renewables to meet remaining energy needs.
Reducing Up-front Costs for Rural Energy Efficiency Projects
Improving the energy efficiency of rural homes, businesses, and institutions keeps hard-earned money in community members’ pockets. However, programs to provide efficiency upgrades often require upfront investments, which may be a barrier for some rural community members. Utilities, state and local governments, advocates, and efficiency program implementers can help rural residents and businesses access various funding sources to offset the cost of efficiency improvements. This fact sheet describes a variety of funding sources and financing tools available to for rural energy efficiency program implementers.
Supporting Rural Electric Co-op Members with Energy Efficiency
Energy efficiency programs benefit rural electric cooperatives (co-ops), their members, and the communities they serve. By offering energy efficiency programs, co-ops invest in their members. This fact sheet describes the benefits of energy efficiency to co-ops and their communities and offers strategies by which co-ops can deepen energy savings. It also highlights examples of co-ops that are already doing energy efficiency.