The Efficiency Maine Trust offers a broad portfolio of efficiency programs for residential and commercial customers under its well-recognized Efficiency Maine brand. The Trust creates three-year energy efficiency programs, known as a Triennial Plan, which are overseen by the Public Utilities Commission (PUC).
Maine’s fourth Triennial Plan for the program years of 2020-2021was approved by the PUC in May, 2019 and updated to its current state in December, 2019. The plan reflects a balancing of the following priorities in its allocation of the budget and design of programs: acquiring resources, transforming the market, maintaining fairness, leveraging the private sector, and reducing environmental impacts of energy. Efficiency Maine continues to deliver a successful suite of programs, with an emphasis on new heating equipment, including heat pumps. Efficiency Maine also offers a variety of financing products to help residential customers bridge the gap and implement cost-effective measures.
Governor Janet Mills took office in January, 2019 and has since made climate change a priority by signing a number of bills to reduce the state’s energy usage and emissions. In her first 100 days she announced bill S.P. 550 - L.D. 1679 An Act To Promote Clean Energy Jobs and To Establish the Maine Climate Council. This bill establishes the creation of a new committee, the Maine Climate Change Council, to develop climate action plans. The bill also creates a roadmap for reducing emissions to achieve an 80% reduction below 1990 levels by 2050 with an interim goal of 45% by 2030.
In June, 2019 Governor Janet Mills signed into law LD 1766 “An Act To Transform Maine's Heat Pump Market To Advance Economic Security and Climate Objectives” which establishes the goal of installing 100,000 cold climate air-source heat pumps. Maine uses more heating oil per capita than any other state. The adoption of a heat pump is expected to save customers $300-$600 per year per home in heating expenses.
Building energy benchmarking ordinances have traditionally been enacted only in major cities across the country. Northeast cities such as New York City, Philadelphia, and Boston have been leaders when it comes to the adoption of benchmarking policies. South Portland, Maine on the other hand, is a very small community and has implemented a benchmarking ordinance that went into effect in January 2017. This is the smallest community (at the time of adoption) to require benchmarking of building energy use. The first required reporting was due May 1, 2018 with annual reporting thereafter. This ordinance covers municipal, public, residential, and non-residential buildings.
Maine is currently on the 2009 IECC for residential building codes and the 2006 IECC - ASHRAE 90.1-2007 optional for commercial. Recently passed bill LD1509 requires the Technical Building Codes and Standards Board to amend the Maine Uniform Building and Energy Code so as to be consistent with the most recent edition of the International Energy Conservation Code published by the International Code Council, as well as the most recent edition of the International Mechanical Code published by the International Code Council.
Policy & Program Information
Maine at a Glance
|Direct Jobs in Energy Efficiency||8,647|
|Electric Program Expenditures||$31.4 million|
|Gas Program Expenditures||$1.7 million|
|Per Capita Expenditures||$24.85|
|Annual Electric Savings||113,687 MWh|
|Electric Savings as Percent of Retail Sales||1.01%|
|Annual Gas Savings||901,560 therms|
|Gas Savings as Percent of Retail Sales||0.30%|