Guiding Principles for Next-Generation Performance-based Utility Program Models


Performance-based utility programs are utility energy efficiency programs that deliver energy savings and/or demand flexibility by providing incentives for measured and verified energy and/or demand reductions over a specified time period.

Next-Generation Performance-based Utility Program Models

Leveraging Performance-based Utility Programs to Accelerate Deep Energy Retrofits and Enhance Demand Flexibility

Utilities today face numerous challenges in navigating the increasingly complex energy system, while also working to achieve ambitious energy efficiency and emissions reduction requirements and goals. Meeting these challenges will require adopting Active Efficiency strategies – moving beyond traditional energy efficiency measures to optimize energy supply and demand. Performance-based utility programs can enable Active Efficiency approaches that accelerate both deep energy retrofits and demand flexibility, while achieving energy and cost savings and emissions reductions.

The Active Efficiency Collaborative held a series of regionally focused workshops during September-November 2020 to explore these topics, resulting in a set of Guiding Principles for Next-Generation Performance-based Utility Program Models. The Guiding Principles describe elements that performance-based utility programs should incorporate such as developing holistic metrics, enabling long-term financing, and balancing different stakeholders’ needs to ensure they accelerate deep energy retrofits, enhance demand flexibility, and achieve equitable and inclusive outcomes.

The workshops were co-hosted by NYPA, NYSERDA, ConEd, National Grid,  MEEA, and SEEA, and each included 30-60 participants representing utilities and regulators, energy services companies, state and federal government agencies, technology companies, and research institutions.

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      Learn more about performance-based utility programs

      A performance-based utility program is an energy efficiency program that delivers energy savings and/or demand flexibility by providing incentives for measured and verified energy and/or demand reductions over a specified time period.