Washington, D.C., October 3, 2012 — According to the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy, the top 10 energy efficiency states are Massachusetts (in its second year atop the rankings), California, New York, Oregon, Vermont, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Washington, Maryland and Minnesota.
The 10 states most in need of improvement (starting with last) are Mississippi, North Dakota, West Virginia, Wyoming, South Dakota, Alaska, Kansas, Missouri, Louisiana and Nebraska.
The three most improved states are Oklahoma, Montana, and South Carolina. All three states significantly increased their budgets for electric efficiency programs in 2011. Oklahoma put in place natural gas efficiency programs for the first time in 2011, and Montana dramatically increased its budgets for these programs.
Other states making progress this year include Arizona, Michigan, North Carolina and Pennsylvania, all of which increased budgets for energy efficiency under their statewide energy savings goals.
Massachusetts retained the top spot in the State Scorecard rankings for the second year in a row, having overtaken California last year, based largely on its continued commitment to energy efficiency under its Green Communities Act of 2008. Among other things, the act spurred greater investments in energy efficiency programs by requiring utilities to save a large and growing percentage of energy every year through efficiency measures.
Annual savings from all customer-funded energy efficiency programs topped 18 million megawatt-hours (MWh) in 2010, a 40 percent increase over a year earlier. This is roughly equivalent to the amount of electricity the state of Wyoming uses each year.