Smart Energy Solutions
MAKING OUR STATE DELIVER ON PROMISED EFFICIENCY—In 2008, Maryland PIRG helped pass the EmPOWER Maryland Act, which set a statewide goal of reducing per capita electricity use 15% by 2015. Now, we’re fighting to make sure our state meets that goal.
Safe and Efficient Energy for Maryland
More than a decade ago, powerful energy companies rewrote the rules that dictate how energy is bought and sold in Maryland. That decision continues to haunt us today.
Marylanders pay high electric bills, suffer from unfair pricing mechanisms that gouge consumers without offering benefits, and our electric grid is strained to the point where we could be facing brown-outs in the coming years.
There is a better way. By adopting consumer oriented rules to govern our electric system, making smart investments in energy efficiency and clean local sources of energy, decision-makers can lower bills, create local clean energy jobs, reduce our dependence on expensive and unsafe sources of energy, and improve the reliability of our electric grid.
Energy Efficient Maryland
Being wasteful with energy raises bills and drains money out of our economy. Meanwhile, energy companies want to use rising demand for electricity as an excuse to fast-track expensive new power lines and power plants in Maryland that we have to pay for.
The fastest and most affordable way to get Maryland’s energy use under control is to make our homes, businesses and communities more energy efficient.
Maryland PIRG advocates real solutions such as insulating homes and businesses, making sure that appliances that are turned off don’t drain power, and requiring utility companies to offer effective energy efficiency programs to consumers.
Maryland has a great deal to gain from smart investments in improved energy efficiency. In fact, every dollar invested in energy efficiency can yield up to $4 in savings for individual consumers.
In order to take advantage of its full potential for energy efficiency, the state adopted the Maryland PIRG-backed EmPOWER Maryland Act in 2008, establishing clear energy efficiency goals for the state. However, the Public Service Commission (PSC), the agency responsible for overseeing the bulk of EmPOWER Maryland’s energy savings goals, has failed to properly manage efforts by the state’s five investor-owned utilities to meet efficiency targets. If current programs do not improve, Maryland risks missing its 2015 energy savings target.
To get Maryland back on track, the Public Service Commission must do more to ensure that utility programs are achieving their share of EmPOWER Maryland targets and approve all efficiency programs that deliver a net benefit to Maryland and our economy.
Tools & Resources
If energy efficiency makes so much sense, why aren't we already doing it?Maryland PIRG
Solutions to rising utility rates, blackouts, and environmental damageMaryland PIRG
Find efficiency incentives offered by your utility company
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