Energy Efficiency Is Not Sexy

February 12, 2011


Renewable energy is sexy – with its gorgeous twirling wind farms cascading over Californian hills, solar panel arrays that look like something straight out of a sci-fi novel, hydrogen fuel cell vehicles that mimic the appearance of those space pods in the Fifth Element, vertical bore geothermal fields with all their soil and clay studies……… okay, so maybe the geothermal field is a bit of a stretch.

In contrast, energy efficiency doesn’t have a leg to stand on when compared to the sexy world of renewables. We’ve got light bulbs that look like ice cream cones, a bunch of computerized panels, and lights that turn off when no one is around. Oh boy, Earl… get me a fan and a cold washcloth! This energy efficiency technology is gettin’ me all percolated! Who am I kidding?

Renewable energy is the Victoria’s Secret of the energy industry and energy efficiency is Wal-mart’s underwear/sock department.

Although efficiency doesn’t have the allure, mystery, and sweet photo-ops that renewable energy does, it has the immediacy and cost-effectiveness that should warrant more air time or attention. Did you know that 30% of the energy used in US commercial buildings is used inefficiently or unnecessarily? With US businesses spending over $200 billion annually on energy bills, $60 billion could be saved each year if businesses implemented energy efficiency measures.

And that $60 billion in savings can be achieved with quick payback periods, drastically increased equipment life, lower maintenance costs, and increased revenues. Also, a saved kilowatt-hour is more environmentally friendly than any energy production technology available.

So even though the sex appeal of renewable energy is high, energy efficiency‘s granny panties get the job done faster, cheaper, easier, and cleaner. Beat that, you slinky thongs of the alternative energy world!


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    […] though energy efficiency and management is not as glamorous and photo-shoot worthy as their renewable energy counterparts, there is something to be said for […]

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