A Cost-Saving Two-fer: Efficiency Reduces Total Electricity Needs & Peak Demand By The Electricity Markets & Policy Department at Berkeley Lab
Study by Natalie Mims Frick, Sean Murphy, Chandler Miller, Greg Leventis, Kristina Hamachi LaCommare, Charles A Goldman, Lisa C Schwartz
Article originally published by the Electricity Markets & Policy Department at Berkeley Lab
December 16 2020
Read more to learn about the findings on how peak demand savings vary by region and sector (low-income, residential, commercial & industrial, cross cutting)
A free webinar on January 7, 2020, 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. Eastern, will discuss the findings. Register for the webinar here (link is external). Slides will be posted several days in advance of the webinar here (link is external).
Berkeley Lab collected data on costs, annual energy savings, and peak demand savings for electricity efficiency programs for 52 utilities and other program administrators in 15 states between 2014 and 2018. The analysis focused on eight program types that represent 68% of the peak demand savings for the utilities and program administrators studied. The findings improve our understanding of which energy efficiency programs produce the most peak demand savings and their cost performance.
The study found that about half of all peak demand reductions from the efficiency programs studied have a levelized PA cost of less than $100 per kilowatt (kW) saved, and three-quarters cost less than $200 per kW saved. (Levelized costs take into account the economic lifetime of actions taken as a result of a program.) Which efficiency programs deliver the most peak demand savings varies by region (see figure). In the Midwest and Northeast, commercial and industrial (C&I) efficiency programs have made the greatest contribution to reported demand reductions, but in the South the largest reductions came from residential programs. In the West, efficiency programs supporting codes and standards have had the largest impact on peak demand.
Program types accounting for the largest share of portfolio demand reductions also vary by state. Residential behavioral and C&I custom programs have produced the most peak demand reductions — 19-41% and 19-46%, respectively — in eight of the states included in the study (AR, IL, MI, NC, NY, PA, SC, TX). Residential lighting programs accounted for more than 10% of demand savings in eight states (AR, AZ, CO, MA, MD, MI, MN, PA), and commercial lighting programs accounted for more than 10% of demand savings in six states (CO, FL, IL, MN, NC, SC).
Among other study findings:
Study authors are Natalie Mims Frick, Sean Murphy, Chandler Miller, Chuck Goldman, Greg Leventis, Kristina LaCommare and Lisa Schwartz in the Electricity Markets and Policy Department at Berkeley Lab. The U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy supported this work.
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About the Study Authors