FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Richmond — Energy reform organization Clean Virginia requested Wednesday in public testimony that the State Corporation Commission (SCC) require Dominion Energy to accelerate its energy efficiency outreach and education campaign, particularly in light of the company’s request to increase customer bills.
“Despite the value of energy efficiency to customers and the codified financial incentive for Dominion Energy included in the Virginia Clean Economy Act (VCEA), the company’s long-term plan still fails to meet the law’s minimum targets and the vast majority of Dominion customers have no awareness of Dominion’s residential energy efficiency programs at all,” Cassady Craighill, Clean Virginia’s Deputy Director testified in remarks to the SCC.
Dominion Energy, Virginia’s largest utility monopoly, has filed for approval of a set of Energy Efficiency programs necessary to comply with the energy savings targets established in the Virginia Clean Economy Act. Dominion is not yet on track to comply with these savings targets, according to an analysis ordered by the SCC.
Compared to peer utilities, the performance of Dominion’s residential energy efficiency programs is notably low. Only 19% of surveyed residential customers were familiar with Dominion Energy programs and only 13% participated in a program in the last three years, according to a long-term plan report required by the SCC. The report included several areas of improvement and emphasized the need to raise public awareness and consolidate the different utility programs.
“It shouldn’t be a battle to get energy efficiency tools in place, but it is because it interferes with the entrenched power and profit of utility monopolies. Regardless, putting energy efficiency first will put Virginians, and not profits, first. And that’s what we need,” said Laura Gonzalez, Energy and Regulatory Policy Manager at Clean Virginia.