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Industrial Energy Efficiency: An Economic Driver for Southwestern Pennsylvania

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[Pittsburgh, March 17, 2016] — Today, Advanced Energy Economy Institute (AEE Institute) and the Scott Institute for Energy Innovation at Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) convened a discussion with utility, advanced energy, and thought leaders to discuss the status of the industrial energy efficiency sector in Pittsburgh and Pennsylvania at large. AEE Institute and its affiliated state partner, the Keystone Energy Efficiency Alliance (KEEA), partnered with CMU to bring together twenty leading thinkers in the energy industry to discuss the opportunities and challenges for industrial efficiency in Southwest Pennsylvania.

“As cities, regions, and states plan for the transformation to a 21st Century Electricity System, it is important for all stakeholders to discuss the opportunities and challenges of integrating advanced energy technology into the energy system, such as industrial efficiency,” said Matt Stanberry, AEE Institute’s Vice President of Market Development. “Collaborative efforts like today’s discussion allow for Pittsburgh and other cities to lead in the next era of innovation in the electricity and energy sector.”

The Industrial sector is the largest user of energy, representing 34 percent of total electricity usage in Pennsylvania. Various efficiency technologies, like combined heat and power (CHP) and demand response (DR), can be used to improve the efficiency of industrial energy users. A statewide evaluation estimated that Pennsylvania could easily achieve 3 percent to 6 percent savings from the industrial sector by 2020 if the right policies are in place.

“Industrial efficiency can play a critical role for the southwest region and all of Pennsylvania to bring savings to both businesses and consumers at large, while driving economic growth at the local and state level,” said Matt Elliott, Interim Executive Director of KEEA. “Programs like Act 129 have already saved consumers billions of dollars, and will continue to do so. We commend CMU and the city of Pittsburgh for their efforts to discuss ways to drive investment in advanced energy.” 

As part of its Energy Week, CMU has been bringing together a diverse group of stakeholders to discuss the transformation of the energy sector both via technology gains and policy changes. The discussion highlighted the industrial efficiency sector and successful projects completed by energy service companies in Pennsylvania. Additionally, participants were able to increase awareness of the benefits of technologies available to the industrial sector to increase their competitiveness through efficiency measures. The group also highlighted opportunities and challenges surrounding the industrial efficiency sector moving forward.

"In Pennsylvania, we literally fuel the region's schools and hospitals growth through our energy efficient combined heat and power system (CHP)," said Elinor Haider, VP of Market Development for Veolia North America. "CHP is a reliable, cost effective, and resilient energy source with significant industrial and manufacturing applications in the Commonwealth."

Pennsylvania continues to make significant progress in energy efficiency, particularly through Act 129 – the state’s energy efficiency program. Through Phase I and II of Act 129, energy efficiency has brought approximately $8.3 billion in savings to customers. Phase III is set to begin in June, and is expected to bring even more savings to the Commonwealth.

“Energy efficiency is a low-cost resource for meeting the Commonwealth’s energy needs. It provides benefits to energy consumers and employs thousands of Pennsylvanians in the manufacturing and installation of the products while saving Pennsylvania’s largest companies thousands in energy costs. We hope that today’s conversation will open a dialogue between the region’s utilities, large energy consumers, and the companies that provide energy efficiency services,” concluded Stanberry.

For more information on the role and size of the energy efficiency sector in the United States, download Advanced Energy Economy’s Advanced Energy Now 2016 Market Report. To learn more about various energy efficiency technologies, download This Is Advanced Energy, a comprehensive industry directory with descriptions, photos and case study examples.

About Advanced Energy Economy Institute
The Advanced Energy Economy Institute is a 501 (c)(3) charitable organization whose mission is to raise awareness of the public benefits and opportunities of advanced energy. AEE Institute provides critical data to drive the policy discussion on key issues through commissioned research and reports, data aggregation and analytic tools. AEE Institute also provides a forum where leaders can address energy challenges and opportunities facing the United States. AEE Institute is affiliated with Advanced Energy Economy (AEE), a 501(c)(6) business association, whose purpose is to advance and promote the common business interests of its members and the advanced energy industry as a whole. AEE and its State and Regional Partner organizations are active in 26 states across the country, representing more than 1,000 companies and organizations in the advanced energy industry. Visit AEE Institute at https://www.aee.net/aeei and AEE online at https://www.aee.net/

About Keystone Energy Efficiency Alliance
The Keystone Energy Efficiency Alliance (KEEA) is a non-profit, tax-exempt 501(c)(6) corporation dedicated to promoting the energy efficiency and renewable energy industries in Pennsylvania. KEEA advocates on behalf of energy efficiency and renewable energy professionals on the local, state, and federal levels. By representing the interests of the clean energy industry in Pennsylvania, KEEA is growing the market for energy efficiency and helping the Keystone State secure a prosperous, sustainable tomorrow. Visit KEEA online at https://www.energywisepa.org/ 

Media Contact:
Monique Hanis, mhanis@aee.net (202) 391-0884