Advanced Energy Legislation Tracker: Search State-level Energy Legislation

Center for the New Energy Economy

[Triple Pundit]  About 80 percent of energy regulation goes on at the state level, estimates Jeff Lyng, senior policy analyst at the Center for the New Energy Economy in Denver. But until last year, finding out exactly what states were doing was incredibly labor intensive: One had to go to each individual state government website separately.

Last year, however, the center unveiled the Advanced Energy Legislation Tracker – a simple, comprehensive, easy-on-the-eyes database of state-level public policy from across the nation. You can check the status of PACE in Arkansas, feed-in tariffs in Hawaii, or gas-tax replacements anywhere: free and searchable…

Energy is a hot topic now, judging from the volume of legislation being proposed: 489 policies were enacted last year and 713 the year before (the drop-off due to the state legislatures that hold abbreviated sessions in even years.)

Last month, the CNEE released its 2014 year-end report of state energy policy, covering the main policy categories (both for and against):

Regulatory – 88 bills were enacted in 2014. (This includes all public-utility commission governance.)

Financing and financial incentives – 63 bills, about half of which were tax credits, with 14 bills providing loans and other financing mechanisms for upfront costs – something CNEE would like to see grow.

Infrastructure – 52 bills (including smartgrid innovation in Hawaii and Massachusetts).

Electricity generation – 48 bills (This category included Power Purchase Agreements, waste-to-energy, and net metering.)

Transportation – 43 bills. This included initiatives to help replace gas-tax revenue lost with the assumption.

Economic development – 40 bills. Many of these are workforce development initiatives — and lots of research and development. “States are competing against each other” in this, said Lyng.

Natural gas development – 38 bills. The most common were laws clarifying and redefining split estate (9 bills).

Emissions – 35 bills. These included 5 greenhouse gas reduction-related bills, and 11 were state responses to federal standard changes.

Energy efficiency – 23 bills. Although it’s the least-costly, EE had the smallest number of attempts.

It would be impossible to cover more than an overview here, but I really encourage you to check out the trends on the Tracker — CNEE does really get into depth. The 2014 report points to a couple of states for points of progress…

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