Energy efficiency programs are operated under contract by the Sustainable Energy Utility (SEU), which is focused on lowering energy use and peak demand, increasing renewable energy generation, and promoting green jobs among District residents and businesses. As in the SEU’s 2017 Annual Report, the 2018 Annual Report again blew past benchmark goals – reducing carbon emissions by 111,000 tons and saving enough electricity to power 15,000 DC homes for a year and enough natural gas to heat Woodrow Wilson High School for 40. The District’s Department of Energy and Environment has been a leading force for innovation in the buildings sector, working closely with the DC Sustainable Energy Utility. Energy efficiency is a core part of the District’s Sustainable DC Task Force Report.
2018 was a big year for energy policy in DC with the final release of three significant sustainability documents: Sustainable DC 2.0, Clean Energy DC, and The Clean Energy DC Omnibus Act of 2018. Energy and Climate DC is the District’s proposal for how to reduce GHG emissions by 50% below 2005 levels and increase renewable energy production to 50% by 2032. The plan includes an extensive commitment to energy efficiency and provides concrete recommendations for increasing savings attributable to the Sustainable Energy Utility. The Clean Energy Omnibus Act increased the renewable energy goal to 100% by 2032 and created regulations to accomplish the District’s energy goals. It increased the fees put on non-renewable electric generation and natural gas, increased funding to the Green Bank and established a first of its kind building energy performance standard (BEPS) for private and government buildings. Beginning on January 1, 2021, all privately owned buildings of 50,000 square feet and all District-owned buildings of 10,000 square feet will be required to comply with the standard. In following years the policy will include buildings of smaller sizes.
D.C. has also entered the grid modernization arena, with its Investigation into Modernizing the Energy Delivery System for Increased Sustainability (MEDSIS)(Case No. 1130). Most recently, the Smart Electric Power Alliance (SEPA) has been selected as the technical consultant to advise the commission on MEDSIS. SEPA has announced phase 1 of MEDSIS, a technical conference at the end of June 2018. The goals of the technical conference are to (1) determine the scope and appropriateness of a system assessment of D.C.’s energy delivery system and (2) identify the working groups needed to proceed with Phase 2. In Phase 2, these working groups will create a framework and guidelines for implementing MEDSIS Pilot Projects, which will be financed through the $21.5 million fund established as a condition of the Pepco-Exelon merger. Potential working groups include Pilot Projects, Non-Wire Alternatives (NWAs), Utility Distribution Integration Resource Planning (DIRP), Distributed Energy Resources (DERs) and Consumer Protections.
The District has earned praise for its Green Construction Code for large commercial construction projects and multifamily buildings. The Department of the Environment developed a strategic compliance plan to deliver code training to contractors and code officials.
Policy & Program Information
Washington D.C. at a Glance
|Direct Jobs in Energy Efficiency||12,807|
|Electric Program Expenditures||$14 million|
|Gas Program Expenditures||$5.1 million|
|Per Capita Expenditures||$27.56|
|Electric Savings||85,313 MWh|
|Electric Savings as Percent of Retail Sales||0.78%|
|Gas Savings||1,610,102 therms|
|Gas Savings as Percent of Retail Sales||0.56%|