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Expert Insight

The High Cost of Clean Energy Standards without Efficiency

Author(s): Marilyn Brown
Professor of Public Policy
Georgia Institute of Technology
Date: January 17, 2012 at 8:22 AM

In his 2011 State of the Union address, President Obama proposed a Clean Energy Standard (CES) requiring that 80 percent of the nation’s electricity come from clean energy resources by 2035. Over the past decade, Congress has debated renewable electricity standards, typically allowing energy efficiency to meet a portion of the target. For example, in 2009, an RES was included in the American Clean Energy Leadership Act of 2009, requiring 15% renewables by 2021, and 27% of this target could be met by energy efficiency. What happened to energy efficiency in the President’s proposal? A well-designed CES policy would enable… [more]

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