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Efficiency an underused energy resource in Montana

March 23, 2009View for printing

As Montanans and all Americans struggle with the dual challenge of an economy and an environment deep in distress, they are looking for solutions that will improve the health of both.

They are also looking for ways to save money now. Fortunately, one opportunity fits the bill perfectly: energy efficiency.

Energy efficiency is an energy resource like any other, except cleaner, cheaper and faster to develop than the alternatives. It is also both abundant and proven. Thanks to programs put in place over the last 30 years, efficiency now ranks as the region’s third largest energy resource. Incredibly, the Pacific Northwest saves over 32 million megawatt-hours of electricity (3,700 aMW) each year n more than twice the amount consumed in all of Montana. In financial terms, that translates to well over $1 billion that can be reinvested back into local businesses and households each year. And, according to recent studies, the region can add another 5,000 aMW of cost-effective efficiency by 2020.


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