There is growing pressure coming from various sources for increase to the number and extent of energy efficiency programs offered by utilities, including federal and state mandates, as well as consumer expectations. The resources and expertise needed to significantly extend energy efficiency programs may exceed some co-ops’ current capabilities, leading to gaps that must be filled. Launching and managing energy efficiency programs is an effort that in the right circumstances can be outsourced to specialized firms called Implementation Contractors (ICs). These firms are often used by investor-owned utilities (IOUs) and large municipal utilities, and likewise, could be of benefit to electric cooperatives in successfully meeting energy efficiency expectations. This three-part article series explains the benefits of engaging implementation contractors as an extension of cooperative staff in meeting present and future energy efficiency resource and expertise needs (Part 1), details related request for proposal (RFP) processes for selecting and hiring ICs (Part 2); and provides a directory of ICs providing energy efficiency implementation services (Part 3).
Value to Electric Cooperatives
Co-ops can benefit from understanding the options, business models, and impacts that a contracted implementer could have for their energy efficiency program. Outsourcing the management of an energy efficiency program would be similar to some traditional uses of contractors, such as vegetation management.
Engineering, Operations, Member Services
Part 1: Energy Efficiency Program Implementers as an Extension of Co-op Staff
Part 2: Identifying, Hiring, and Managing an Energy Efficiency Implementation Contractor
Part 3: Directory of Energy Efficiency Implementation Contractors