After years of virtually no activity, West Virginia utilities have begun implementing customer energy efficiency programs. The state is facing dramatic price increases for residential customers and a general interest in energy efficiency is emerging as a way to create a hedge against rising rates by lowering energy bills. West Virginia's state legislature proposed an Energy Efficiency Resource Standard in 2011, but the bill failed to make it through the House Judiciary Committee.
Recent progress has been made for energy efficiency and demand-side management programs as a result of case 09-0177, which ordered Appalachian Power to submit an energy efficiency plan with its 2010 rate case. The final order was in 2010 and it directed power companies to implement approved programs, which included: low-income weatherization; residential home audit; residential lighting; and commercial/industrial prescriptive incentives. In February 2012, several other utilities followed suit, as Monongahela Power and Potomac Edison began offering limited sets of programs.
In 2010, there was no funding for utility energy efficiency programs in West Virginia, according to the Consortium for Energy Efficiency. This figure will surely rise as AEP Appalachian Power and FirstEnergy have since begun implementing programs.