Sens. Portman, Shaheen Sponsor Bill to Improve Energy Efficiency

Originally published by: Daily Energy InsiderJuly 19, 2019

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U.S. Sens. Rob Portman (R-OH) and Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) introduced a bill designed to improve energy efficiency in the federal government, as well as in commercial and residential buildings and the industrial sector.

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The Energy Savings and Industrial Competitiveness Act (ESIC) would use technology and employ a variety of low-cost tools to help energy users become more efficient. Specifically, the bill incentivizes the use of efficiency technologies that will pay for themselves through energy savings.

Residential and commercial buildings accounted for about 40 percent of total U.S. energy consumption in 2018, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Also, the federal government is the largest single energy consumer in the country. Improving energy efficiency in these three key sectors will help significantly reduce emissions and save consumers money.

“This bill is a win-win, creating new jobs and protecting our environment—all without a single new tax or mandate,” Portman said. “It would reduce our carbon emissions and give our workers in Ohio and around the country a competitive advantage by making our plants and buildings more energy efficient. It’s good news for the taxpayer, too, because it would make the federal government practice what it preaches and use energy more efficiently. And by saving consumers billions in reduced energy costs, it will help reduce the cost of living, ensuring hard-working Americans have a few dollars extra at the end of each month that they can use to pay for needed expenses, invest in their child’s college education, or save for retirement.”

It was co-sponsored by Sens. Susan Collins (R-ME), Chris Coons (D-DE), Roger Wicker (R-MS), Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Michael Bennett (D-CO).

“Energy efficiency is the cheapest and fastest way to approach our economy’s energy independence,” Shaheen said. “This bill provides a path forward to making significant progress on reducing carbon emissions in order to address climate change. It’s a win for jobs, consumers, and the environment. Congress should seize this opportunity. Over the last couple years, the Senate has made incremental progress on energy efficiency issues, and I hope we can continue to build on those efforts.”