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  • The MARKET: An Alternative Energy Efficiency Program

    Adding to a long list of energy-efficiency legislation, two Members of Congress—David B. McKinley (R–WV) and Peter Welch (D–VT)—recently proposed a federal energy-efficiency bill that gives tax rebates to homeowners who make energy-saving improvements to their homes. This bill and its predecessors reward consumers for saving money.

    Let’s propose a simpler, more direct, and more effective alternative.

    The Momentous Act to Reduce Konsumers’ Energy Tabs (The MARKET)

    Preamble: Federal energy efficiency programs typically tie the rebate/subsidy to the amount spent on efficiency or to meeting certain efficiency thresholds. They do not tie the reward to actual dollars saved. To remedy this weakness, The MARKET provides dollar-for-dollar benefits tied directly to actual savings.

    SEC. 1. Rebate for equipment upgrades and weatherization projects

    Any equipment upgrade or weatherization project that demonstrates actual savings will be rewarded under The MARKET.

    (a) For every dollar a household or business saves on its monthly energy bill, it will save a dollar on its monthly energy bill. For example, if a homeowner installs new windows and additional insulation that reduce his or her monthly heating and air conditioning bill by $100, the homeowner will save $100 on his or her monthly heating and air conditioning bill. There will be no paperwork to fill out; homeowners will receive the savings directly and immediately from their energy suppliers in the form of a lower bill.

    SEC. 2. Rebate for energy-saving behavior

    Unlike many other federal energy programs, The MARKET provides financial incentives for energy-conserving behavior.

    (a) For every dollar that consumers can save on their energy bills by reducing energy-consuming activities, they will save a dollar on their energy bills. For example, if a homeowner puts a timer on the shower and gets the family to take shorter showers and reduce the monthly hot water bill by $20, the family will save $20 on its monthly hot water bill.

    SEC. 3. Rebate for transportation efficiency

    The three fundamental strategies for saving energy in transportation are:

    1. Upgrade to a more energy-efficient car or truck
    2. Use alternative transportation
    3. Don’t go there

    The transportation rebate will be expenditure A minus expenditure B, where expenditure A is fuel cost when no attempt is made to save energy and expenditure B is fuel cost after energy-saving strategies are employed.

    The MARKET provides perfect incentives for efficient energy savings. Consumers will invest in technology upgrades and behavior modification anywhere the savings outweigh the costs. In addition, since there is no government expenditure, the impact on the federal budget would be minimal. There is no need for compliance with the Paperwork Reduction Act, since there is no paperwork.

    Posted in Energy [slideshow_deploy]

    3 Responses to The MARKET: An Alternative Energy Efficiency Program

    1. Bobbie says:

      Believe where government is corruption lingers if it isn't already corrupt by government. People pay their bills and for those that don't, give them the "smart meter." What sense does it make to have more government subsidies influencing the minds? People learn to make better decisions when personal responsibilities are in their control. Like their BILLS! The government FOCUS is causing unnecessary time and trouble directly resulting in unintended consequences when alternative energy isn't efficient at ALL! When alternative energy becomes efficient, practical and reasonable, we'll make our choices!

    2. Ellen Baker says:

      I live in Whatcom County, Washington, and we have been subjected to a $4.5 million Department of Energy "pilot program" called the Community Energy Challenge. See this local blog expose for details: http://www.whatcomexcavator.org/alert-community-e

      The high-overhead experiment was such a dismal failure, despite the overhead spent on promotion, that the "grant leftovers" were recently doled-out to NGO's. More details available at that blog, see: http://www.whatcomexcavator.org/3/post/2012/03/op

      It's pathetic to see that government intends to press on, regardless, despite the obvious failure of this concept.

    3. Karl Uppiano says:

      The MARKET is sometimes hard to read. High energy bills can be offset by energy saving home improvements; however, new triple pane windows can cost tens of thousands of dollars. Insulation can be very expensive, especially for upgrading older homes with 2×4 construction vs. 2×6.

      This is where education, and smart marketing, as well as loans from energy-conscious or environmentally concerned banks and eco-activists. IN FACT, if these eco-activists would provide services to help people upgrade, instead of pushing their anti-growth, collectivist agenda, more people would get on board.

      Unfortunately, most environmentalists are WATERMELONS — green on the outside, and red on the inside. They're not really interested in the environment per se, they're interested in using environmental issues to force their anti-capitalist, anti free market agenda. That is why you don't see them doing anything to actually help the environment that doesn't involve government coercion.

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