The U.S. public might not realize how strong a role their state governors play in promoting green technology and innovation, and improving energy efficiency rules and standards. Much credit and criticism is leveled at the White House, but governors actively work to advance energy efficiency in their respective states and make a big difference to progress in this area. While one might wish to criticize that not enough is being done, a report from the National Governors Association aims to dispel misconceptions.
Working, Planning, Analyzing
Neil Abercrombie, Hawaii’s governor, contends that “states are continuing to explore options” around how to reduce their carbon emissions (http://www.nga.org/). It might seem easy to regulate consumers so they use less energy, but nothing is simple where this topic is concerned. This is why governors have created a primer stating what they should be doing and telling the public what they have already achieved to help consumers lower their energy costs and usage. By lowering what they use, consumers are also achieving lower bills and making their impact on environmental health.
How can consumers reduce their bills, however, if their needs remain the same? One way is for governments to address utility companies directly. By issuing incentives to find ways to make energy cost less, they promote change at the heart of the issue. As costs come down, consumers in homes and office buildings feel the relief of lower bills. If they have also made changes to their own households and offices, such as replacing drafty windows and switching to LED lights, they will notice an immense financial difference overall.
Governors have created regulations to urge businesses to increase energy efficiency, particularly in buildings and their use of appliances (http://www.nga.org/). Most appliance manufacturers now sell products ranked for energy efficiency and most appliances are better than any equivalent produced ten years ago. This goes for printers, scanners, photocopiers, and kettles.
Changes in regulations are wonderful, but how are companies and people going to keep lowering their output? They will succeed as long as innovators keep working on new products and systems which help, but these smart people need help too.
Governors aim to promote research by partnering with post-secondary institutions where technological faculties exist. They also make it possible for private innovators to afford loans so they can experiment towards greener technology.
To ensure they are funding the right ideas and promoting truly green innovation, governors also discuss and explore ideas to determine what is best. They do nothing without planning first.