Opinion: Efficiency is just as important as promoting renewables

I read with interest the front page article titled “Energy Secretary talks climate change” in the May 19 edition.
The article focused on global warming and reducing carbon emissions through renewable energy — solar, biomass, methane digesters. (There was no mention of wind turbines, for some reason.)
I agree that reducing carbon emissions into the atmosphere is very, very important.
However, one major way to reduce carbon, the use of energy efficiently, was not mentioned at all. Efficiency Vermont has done a stellar job in helping residents and businesses reduce their heating fuel and electricity consumption by significant amounts over the years. These are reductions in carbon emissions that last year over year.
As an example, when my house was air sealed and insulated by an Efficiency Vermont certified contractor, my fuel usage (and expense, and carbon footprint) dropped by 30 percent. And, there are additional steps I can take to drop it even further.
Efficiency Vermont provides rebates to people and businesses who complete approved efficiency projects. I would have liked to have seen the panelists discuss additional funding to provide even greater incentives for many more residents and businesses would do even more energy efficiency projects and reduce carbon emission even more.
There are many examples in Vermont of real efficiency projects that have saved serious carbon and money by reducing energy usage. I urge the Addison Independent to connect with Efficiency Vermont and lay those facts out to the public and to the decision makers in Vermont and Washington, D.C.
Bob Donnis

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