Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the National Association of Energy Service Companies (NAESCO) issued a new report, “Performance Contracting and Energy Efficiency in the State Government Market” (PDF). The report found that among the 12 states studied, in aggregate they have implemented 236 Energy Savings Performance Contracting (ESPC) projects in the state government market totaling over $1 billion.
The study looks at state experiences with energy efficiency strategies like the use of ESPC, utility energy efficiency programs, bonds, and revolving loan funds. It focuses on 12 states that include some of the largest markets in terms of building stock and population in the U.S.
In about half of the states analyzed, less than 20 percent of state facilities have had comprehensive energy retrofits. According to the report, five states – Kansas, Missouri, Maryland, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania – have relatively successful ESPC programs.
In California, investments in energy efficient projects using partnerships between state universities and utilities or budgeted capital projects are three times greater than investment delivered through ESPC projects, according to the study.
NAESCO Executive Director Terry E. Singer, one of the authors of the report, said that, “The report makes the case that state agencies should leverage all available energy investment sources and integrate, whenever possible, the monetary incentives and technical assistance available through state and utility efficiency programs with ESCO-delivered energy efficiency investments to maximize the overall level of dollar and energy savings harvested from state facilities.”
The study also indicates that states need to focus more on data collection and program evaluation issues. “It will be difficult for policy makers and customers to meet economic and environmental objectives without good data on which to base decisions,” said David Weiss, treasurer of NAESCO.