Minnesota Among Top 10 Energy Efficient States

Minnesota ranked eighth for energy efficiency for the second year in a row, according to the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy.

For the second year in a row, Minnesota is the eighth most energy efficient state in the country-tied with Connecticut-according to the 2010 State Energy Efficiency Scorecard from the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE).

ACEEE's scorecard examines six state energy efficiency policy areas: utility and public benefits programs and policies, transportation policies, building energy codes, combined heat and power, state government initiatives, and appliance efficiency standards.

States can earn up to 50 points in these six policy areas combined. California took the top spot for the fourth year in a row with a score of 45.5. Massachusetts followed close behind with a score of 42.5, and Oregon rounded out the top three with a 37.

Minnesota scored 28 points out of a possible 50, down from last year when the state scored 30.5 points. The state's utility and public benefits programs and policies scored a 15 out of a possible 20-thanks to its energy efficient resource standards and electricity program budgets.

The state didn't fare well for its transportation policies, scoring one out of a possible eight points. The one point was received for having a policy to reduce the number of miles traveled by vehicles in the state, but Minnesota failed to score points for not having a large amount of transit funding, not offering consumer incentives for purchasing high-efficiency vehicles, and not adopting the California GHG tailpipe emissions standard.

The ACEEE called Minnesota a “leading state” for its commitment to sustainable buildings, saying that the state is “providing leadership, setting high performance standards, and putting forward an integrated framework of programs that provide a comprehensive system for designing, managing, and improving building performance.”

North Dakota claimed the bottom spot with a score of 1.5. Mississippi and Alabama were also among the worst states according to the scorecard, scoring a 2 and 3, respectively.

Texas and New Hampshire dropped the farthest in 2010, down nine spots each from 2009. The most improved states include Utah (up 11 spots), Arizona (up 11 spots), New Mexico (up eight spots), and Alaska (up eight spots).

The ACEEE is an independent and nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing energy efficiency as a means of promoting economic prosperity, energy security, and environmental protection. ACEEE was founded in 1980 by leading researchers in the energy field and has published the State Energy Efficiency Scorecard for four years.