SD flunks energy efficiency test
By Northern Plains News
Minnesota is energy efficient. South Dakota, not so much, according to a new report on the most and least energy efficient states.
South Dakota tied with Mississippi and Alaska as the 47th most efficient — or third least efficient — states. Neighboring Minnesota nearly cracked the top 10 as the 11th most efficient state, according to the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy.
South Dakota’s northern and western neighbors, North Dakota and Wyoming, tied for 51st most efficient — or the most inefficient — states in the study released Wednesday.
The Mount Rushmore State’s ranking earned it a spot in the group’s “5 States Most Needing Improvement” classification.
The report noted the following about South Dakota:
“South Dakota’s utilities have been implementing ratepayer funded energy efficiency programs since the mid-2000s, however the levels of efficiency program spending and associated energy savings have been lower than the national average and have not increased significantly.”
Still, the group sees overall improvement nationally.
“In every region we are seeing states embrace energy saving measures with growing enthusiasm,” said ACEEE Executive Director Steve Nadel. “From Massachusetts, which continues to be the pacesetter in the race to cut down energy waste, to Mississippi, which is emerging as a regional star, state governments are proving that smart policy can still cross partisan divides.”
In this seventh edition of the State Scorecard, the ACEEE ranks states on their energy efficiency policy and program efforts. The State Scorecard examines six policy areas in which states typically pursue energy efficiency: utility and “public benefits” programs and policies; transportation polices; building energy codes and compliance; combined heat and power policies; appliance and equipment standards; and state government-led initiatives around energy efficiency.