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Reaching the Hardest Segment: Small- and Medium-Sized Manufacturers

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Big Benefits... At a recent conference in Milwaukee hosted by M-WERC, the opportunities for reducing energy consumption at small- and medium-sized manufacturing facilities were touted repeatedly: Cost savings, productivity increases, improved worker safety and plant conditions, extended equipment lifetimes, corporate marketing benefits – the list goes on. But, as the audience contained several manufacturers from across Wisconsin, also on display were the myriad challenges these businesses face in implementing even low- or no-cost efficiency projects. At the same time, utility and implementer reps expressed frustrations about delivering on genuinely good intentions to help these businesses save energy, reduce costs and become more…

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What Energy Codes can Teach Us about Marriage

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This toast was delivered by MEEA Building Policy Manager Alison Lindburg before the wedding of a fellow codes team member. We liked it so much, we wanted to share that lovin' feeling with you.  Marriage is like a home built to code: First you build the foundation, which means you need a good solid material – ie, the marry the right person! Insulation is very important – be sure to make your partner feel protected and warm, and most importantly, always be installed on the right side (which is theirs)! To be strong, two boards must lean on one another. If one board leans too hard, the other will fall over. Sometimes, with a strong wind, one board may take more of the load, but try to be sure that both sides carry the weight. When…

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New Research: Industrial Opt-Outs Undermine Energy Savings

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With increased constraints on our nation’s electric grid—a combination of growing energy demand and aging generation/infrastructure— energy experts turn to large energy users to reduce energy waste and ensure long-term electric reliability. According to the Energy Information Administration, the industrial-sector uses 34% of all electricity in the Midwest region. The Midwestern states consume 38% of the United States’ industrial sector electricity, with eight states ranked in the top 15 for industrial energy consumption.  In short, the industry-heavy Midwest could benefit significantly from industrial energy efficiency. What’s Wrong with Opt-Outs MEEA Policy Associate Leah Scull recently completed an in-depth analysis of industrial…

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