Current Practices Remove Most Effective Measures for Reducing Customer Bills
Tallahassee, Fla. – The Southern Alliance for Clean Energy (SACE) filed a request today with the Florida Public Service Commission calling for a public workshop to be held before Commission Staff rewrites the state’s Energy Efficiency Act rules. The request relies upon Florida Statute Section 120.54(2)(c), which grants affected persons the right to such workshops for the purpose of rule development.
SACE’s Energy Efficiency Director, Forest Bradley-Wright, stated, “We support the Florida Public Service Commission initiating new rulemaking, which is sorely needed to improve the way energy conservation goals are set for the state’s largest electric utilities. Current practices around energy efficiency goal setting are failing Florida’s hardworking families, who continue to struggle with unaffordable energy bills. When several utilities attempted to use outdated rules to slash their energy savings goals to zero last Fall, it became obvious to the Commission and the public that the state’s energy efficiency practices require serious reform.”
Ahead of a Commission hearing on July 7th to approve utility efficiency plans, Commission Staff appeared to limit the scope of rulemaking to administratively merging proceedings for authorizing utility energy efficiency goals and corresponding program plans. But the new rulemaking also provides a long-overdue opportunity to address more fundamental problems that have kept Florida at the bottom of national rankings for utility energy efficiency performance for many years.
At the recent hearing, several Commissioners noted problems with the way cost-effectiveness is evaluated in Florida while calling for the new rulemaking. They also noted the same concerns when explaining why the Commission rejected utility proposals last Fall that would have slashed efficiency goals down to zero.
“Florida is the only state that eliminates all of the most cost-effective and impactful energy efficiency measures before setting its energy-saving targets,” said Bradley-Wright. “With the ongoing economic fallout from the COVID-19 crisis, energy bills are even more unaffordable for millions of Florida families and businesses. We urge the Commission to convene a public workshop on this important issue before its Staff rewrites the state’s energy efficiency rules. After nearly 30 years on the books, it is time Florida reformed its outdated efficiency practices so customers can stop paying for senselessly wasted electricity.”
Since 1985, the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy has worked to promote responsible energy choices to ensure clean, safe, and healthy communities throughout the Southeast. Learn more at www.cleanenergy.org.