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Letter to Boxer and EPW - Require Efficiency Investment

October 30, 2009
The Honorable Barbara Boxer, Chair
Senate Environment and Public Works Committee
410 Dirksen Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510

RE:  Require Efficiency Investment of at least 1/3 of Allowance Value Given to Electric Utilities 

Dear Chairwoman Boxer:

Congratulations on your recent release of the Chairman’s Mark of the climate bill.  As your Committee moves to mark up the legislation and toward passing the bill out of Committee, we urge you to make a crucial change that is necessary to create hundreds of thousands of jobs, enhance consumer protection, and lower the cost of the climate program.  

We are writing to request that the climate bill require an investment in energy efficiency equivalent to at least 1/3 of the value of the total allowance allocation given to electric utilities.  Such an efficiency investment will create hundreds of thousands of new jobs retrofitting millions of buildings nationwide, and benefit consumers by lowering electricity costs by billions of dollars, as residential, commercial, and industrial consumers typically save in the range of $2 to $4 for every $1 invested in energy efficiency.  It would also help decrease greenhouse gas emissions and thus reduce the market clearing price of carbon.  

In light of these tremendous benefits, close to two hundred labor, business, civil rights, community-based,  and environmental organizations below support allocating 1/3 of the electric utility allowances toward energy efficiency.  

The Chairman’s Mark includes a 1/3 efficiency investment requirement for natural gas utilities, which ensures that more than $3 billion per year will be invested in natural gas efficiency.  This will yield more than $15 billion in gas efficiency investments by 2020, generating consumer savings of approximately $45 billion, and creating more than 100,000 new jobs.   We strongly support this provision.
As you prepare to pass climate legislation out of the EPW Committee, we urge you to include a similar 1/3 efficiency investment requirement for the electric utility allocation, which would:

  • Generate $100 billion in electric efficiency investments;
  • Create more than 900,000 new construction, energy service, and building maintenance and operations jobs by 2020, and many more additional jobs at plants that supply these sectors (based on analysis by Green Economy, 2009), and; 
  • Reduce consumers’ energy bills by $300 billion.

We thank you for your assistance on this important issue, and we look forward to working together to pass climate legislation that will create new clean energy jobs across the country, protect consumers, and strengthen our economy.


National Organizations
Green For All
Building and Construction Trades Department, AFL-CIO
Center for American Progress
Service Employees International Union (SEIU)
Apollo Alliance
Change to Win
Environment America
Sheet Metal Workers' International Association
Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning Contractors National Association
Sierra Club
Laborers International Union of North America (LiUNA!)
International Association of Bridge, Structural, Ornamental and Reinforcing Iron Workers
Energy Action Coalition
National Community Action Partnership
League of Conservation Voters
United Association of Journeymen and Apprentices of the Plumbing and Pipefitting Industry
National Wildlife Federation
Color of Change
ENE (Environment Northeast)
Johnson Controls
American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy
Union of Concerned Scientists
Rock the Vote
Voto Latino
Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC)
Wider Opportunities for Women
League of United Latin American Citizens
Clean Water Action
The Partnership for Working Families
United States Student Association
League of Young Voters
U.S. Green Building Council
Conservation Services Group
Energy Future Coalition
1 Sky
National Audubon Society
Gamaliel Foundation
Transportation Equity Network
Center for Community Change
National Employment Law Project
Hip Hop Caucus
Global Exchange
Social Venture Network
YouthBuild USA
Investors Circle
Electric and Gas Industries Association
Izaak Walton League of America
Environmental Entrepreneurs (E2)
Progressive Majority
Wellstone Action
Generational Alliance
The Wilderness Society
Faiths United for Sustainable Energy
The Keystone Group
The Corps Network
Environmental and Energy Study Institute
Center for Biological Diversity
SEEED: Students Endeavoring for Enlightened Environmental Decisions
Energy Federation Incorporated
Serious Materials, Inc.
Focus the Nation
Courage Campaign
TRC Energy Services
Better World Telecom
The Pax Group
Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law
State and Local Organizations
Environment California
Environment Colorado
Environment Illinois
Environment Maryland
Environment New Jersey
Environment Texas
Environment Nevada
Environment Oregon
Environment Massachusetts
Environment Georgia
Southwest Energy Efficiency Project
Northeast Energy Efficiency Partnerships
Appalachian Mountain Club
Coger Custom Construction Company (AR)
Coger Properties LLC (AR)
Custom Home and Commercial Electronics (AR)
Ella Baker Center for Human Rights (CA)
Center on Policy Initiatives (CA)
Art in Action Youth Leadership Program (CA)
Grind for the Green (CA)
Los Angeles Conservation Corps (CA)
Oakland Resilience Alliance (CA)
Engage Network (CA)
Sustainable Spaces (CA)
Bevilacqua-Knight, Inc.    (CA)
California Building Performance Contractors Association (CA)
California Home Energy Education Foundation (CA)
GreenMarineRePower (CA)
Schiller Consulting (CA)
The Building Doctors (CA)
GeoPraxis, Inc. (CA)
Working Partnerships USA (CA)
Rising Sun Energy Center (CA)
InorOut Smart Energy (CO)
Southeast Energy Efficiency Alliance (GA)
Home Energy Raters of Illinois, LLC (IL)
Levin Enterprises (IL)
Studio-Levin (IL)
Alliance for Affordable Energy (LA)
Associated Industries of Massachusetts (MA)
Mark J. Ahem, Inc. (MA)
New England Window Systems, Inc. (MA)
Robert Jordan Builder, Inc. dba Dr. Warm (MA)
A&M Contracting (MA)
Accelerate Energy (MA)
Advanced Energy Services (MA)
American Insulation (MA)
Anderson Insulation, Inc. (MA)
Atlantic Insulation (MA)
BlueWave Strategies LLC (MA)
Center for Applied Regional Studies (MA)
Center of Ecological Technology (MA)
Clean Energy Venture Group (MA)
Conservation Law Foundation (MA)
Custom Insulation Company, Inc. (MA)
Danetti Insulation (MA)
Dan Hartford Electric (MA)
Energy Efficiency Associates, LLC (MA)
Fontaine Insulation (MA)
Frehill Insulation (MA)
Green Seal (MA)
Inslulation Experts (MA)
Installed Measures (MA)
Insul Pro (MA)
John Taglienti (MA)
Massachusetts Super Insulation Project (MA)
McEachern Insulation (MA)
McLaughlin Insulation (MA)
New England Clean Energy Council (MA)
New England Insulation     (MA)
Northeast Energy Efficiency Council (MA)
Pelletier Insulation (MA)
Maryland Public Interest Research Group (MD)
Mobern Lighting Company (MD)
Michigan Land Use Institute (MI)
Advanced Building Analysis, LLC (NH)
Chrisner Group    (NJ)
MaGrann Associates (NJ)
ProgressNow Nevada (NV)
Center for Working Families (NY)
Environmental Advocates of New York (NY)
Association for Energy Affordability, Inc. (NY)
EarthKind Solar (NY)
GreenHomes America (NY)
Kinetik Energy Solutions, Inc. (NY)
Long Island Green Homes (NY)
Precision Built Homes (NY)
Spruce Mountain, Inc. (NY)
Starfire New Energy Technology (NY)
Waste to Wealth Ventures (NY)
Harmony Architecture (OH)
Research Into Action, Inc. (OR)
GreenSavers USA (OR)
PennEnvironment (PA)
AFC First Financial Corp. (PA)
Atlantic Energy Concepts, Inc. (PA)
Building Performance Architecture (PA)
Conservation Consultants, Inc. (PA)
EAM Associates, Inc. (PA)
Ecocentric Energy Solutions (PA)
EMP Engineering Services, Inc. (PA)
Energy Coordinating Agency of Philadelphia (PA)
G. S. Fultz and Associates (PA)
Great Bear Financial (PA)
Green Energy Engineering Services, Inc. (PA)
Green Savers LLC (PA)
J.W. Crouse, Inc. (PA)
Saving Green Energy Audits, LLC (PA)
Sustainable Futures Communications, LLC (PA)
Warren Energy Engineering, LLC (PA)
emPower Brown (RI)
Newport Energy & Environment Commission (RI)
Channing Memorial Church Green Congregation Committee (RI)
Tennessee Interfaith Power & Light (TN)
Utah Clean Energy (UT)
Optimal Energy, Inc. (VT)
Vermont Energy Investment Corporation (VT)
Vermont Public Interest Research Group (VT)
Batt + Lear, Inc. (WA)
Ecos Consulting (WA)
Fuse Washington (WA)
Optimum Energy, LLC (WA)
EcoHouse (Washington, D.C.)
Citizens Utility Board of Wisconsin (WI)

CC: Member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee

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