EfficiencyOne files new 3-year plan to reduce electricity costs for Nova Scotians and help meet net-zero climate commitments
For immediate release
March 11, 2022 – Halifax/Kjipuktuk, NS – EfficiencyOne, the nonprofit administrator of Efficiency Nova Scotia, has put forward a new 3-year energy reduction plan – or Demand Side Management Plan (Plan) – to the Nova Scotia Utility and Review Board (UARB) for approval. The Plan would come into effect on January 1, 2023.
The Plan will help Nova Scotians lower their electricity bills by reducing their energy use, while helping the province meet its net-zero commitments under the Environmental Goals and Climate Change Reduction Act.
Overall, the Plan will lower electricity bills by over $540 million for Nova Scotia’s families and businesses, support 5,300 jobs across the province, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by nearly 2 million tonnes.
The Plan will deliver more Efficiency Nova Scotia programs to more Nova Scotians, with $35 million to help low-income Nova Scotians, including renters, live more comfortably in their homes; $7 million to help Mi’kmaw communities reduce electricity costs and improve comfort while supporting local job creation; and $20 million to help small businesses on their path to recovery.
Before developing the Plan, EfficiencyOne listened to Nova Scotians, surveying over 1,400 homeowners and renters, and 360 businesses and organizations, and meeting with regulatory stakeholders, business groups, government officials, community organizations and environmental groups.
Overwhelmingly, Nova Scotians said they support programs that reduce electricity costs and shrink Nova Scotia’s carbon footprint.
“Over the past ten years, Nova Scotians have spoken with their actions by making a variety of energy efficiency improvements. You’ve told us that reducing electricity demand is the best way to lower energy costs and reduce the impact of climate change,” said Stephen MacDonald, President and CEO, EfficiencyOne. “Energy efficiency, and the transition to renewable electricity, are key elements in achieving Nova Scotia’s climate goals.”
The Plan also includes:
- Industry training and support to ensure all Nova Scotians have access to skilled trades and qualified products to complete upgrades and renovations.
- Youth engagement activities, and training to improve diversity and inclusion in the energy efficiency industry.
- New supports to ready the residential construction market for advanced building codes.
- Free installation of even more energy-saving products, including occupancy sensors, lighting controls and smart thermostats.
- Expanded rebate offerings for businesses of all sizes, including more opportunities to save instantly in-store.
- Performance-based incentives to encourage large energy users to achieve higher electricity savings.
- Managed services and incentives to help industrial facilities complete complex, multi-year projects and achieve higher electricity savings.
- Continued access to efficiency expertise and support, including more virtual resources, guides, and tools.
The Plan will see energy efficiency investments increase from the current level of around $40 million a year to $57 million a year. The higher investment is more than offset by the savings ratepayers receive and helps offset other rate pressures by reducing overall energy use.
EfficiencyOne estimates that the Plan could increase electricity bills by approximately $2 a month, starting in 2023, but customers will save far more – on average $5 a month.
“Our new 3-year plan is in lockstep with the Province of Nova Scotia’s commitment to net-zero. It will increase efficiency programs available to residents and businesses, empowering them to reduce their electricity use and save money at a time when it’s very much needed,” said MacDonald.
EfficiencyOne, operating in Nova Scotia as Efficiency Nova Scotia, has a proven track record of success in designing and delivering resource efficiency programs and services for homes, businesses, and large industrial customers. To date, EfficiencyOne has achieved more than $1.4 billion in energy savings and contributed 25% of Nova Scotia’s GHG emission reductions in the last 10 years. Learn more at efficiencyone.ca