Reports makes case for investment in N.C. energy efficient construction
A new report from the North Carolina Building Performance Association (NCBPA) helps make the business case for new and renewed state investment in energy efficient construction in North Carolina.
The report provides policymakers, regulators and utilities a variety of reasons to invest in the state's significant, but little known, energy efficiency industry.
Following nearly a year of research and surveys spanning the state and country, NCBPA identified seven recommendation areas for enabling economic development, job creation and building infrastructure resiliency through new and increased investment in energy efficiency in North Carolina. They are:
- Utility and regulatory environment
- Building and energy codes
- Reduced market and regulatory barriers to entry
- Energy, water and performance benchmarking
- Multifamily and low-income barriers
- Strategic state support and resources
- Workforce development
"About a year ago our association realized that North Carolina has no plan, roadmap or agenda for supporting energy efficiency, the least costly and first choice for addressing any state's current and future energy needs," said Ryan Miller, NCBPA founder and executive director. "To kickstart the dialogue, we offer this report to show how investing in less energy usage can result in local economic development, job creation and sustainable buildings for generations to come."
Unknown to many, North Carolina's energy efficiency industry accounts for roughly 2.9 percent of the state's annual GDP and is the largest sector of all energy jobs in the state; greater than coal, nuclear, natural gas or renewable energy.
Industry companies include architects, builders and developers, many types of contractors and product and service providers that help home and building owners save energy while also improving health, safety, comfort and environmental impact for occupants.
"One of the very few state programs we have for energy efficiency – performance contracting – has helped the state save $1.3 billion in energy and water savings in public buildings since 2003 through just $45 million in state funding," said Keith Pehl, president of Optima Engineering, an NCBPA member company. "The reason we say 'Energy Efficiency First' is to put the focus on simply using less energy in the first place. It's a practical and low-cost solution to addressing one of the state's greatest resource challenges."
Visit NCBPA's website to view the full list of recommendations and to download a copy of the report.