Our Impact

February 12, 2021

“By convening conversations, conducting policy analyses, sharing our research, advising policymakers, and educating consumers and businesses, ACEEE commits to serve as a catalyst and agent for the systemic transformation necessary to address climate change.”

ACEEE’s Call to Action for Energy Efficiency

Through energy efficiency, the United States can halve domestic energy use and associated greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. This ambition, vital to preventing the worst effects of climate change, will not be realized without bold mobilization of efficient technologies and strategies. ACEEE is committed to meeting this urgent challenge. Our Call to Action lays out our vision for tackling climate change and the milestones we aim to reach by 2030. We document our progress to meeting those objectives in our annual report and other impacts highlighted here.


Recent Highlights

  • Federal legislation

    Several energy efficiency provisions on which ACEEE had worked, including on industry R&D, smart manufacturing, smart buildings, weatherization assistance, federal energy management, and technical corrections to the ceiling fan standard, were enacted in the Energy Act of 2020, part of the larger year-end omnibus bill.

  • Energy equity

    U.S. Representative Sarbanes (D-MD) cited our research on energy burdens to call for clean energy investments to help consumers lower energy costs amid the COVID-19 pandemic and recession. We testified before the Subcommittee on Energy of the U.S. House Committee on Energy and Commerce on the findings of our report How High are Household Energy Burdens?.

  • Buildings

    ACEEE worked with a broad coalition of stakeholders to develop efficiency proposals contributing to more than a 10% gain in efficiency achieved by the 2021 International Energy Conservation Code.

    Nora Wang Esram, ACEEE's senior director for research, recently addressed a House panel on expanding the research and development of energy-efficient building technologies. You can read her testimony here.

  • Appliance standards

    Senator Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H., cited statistics from our 2020 report A Powerful Priority during a Senate Appropriations Committee subcommittee hearing in June (starting at 50:46).

    The Appliance Standards Awareness Project, based at ACEEE, helped push through state bills that set energy-saving standards for appliances recently in Massachusetts, Nevada, Oregon, Rhode Island, and Maine.

ACEEE in the News

A few of our favorite media highlights from the past month:

  • ACEEE’s Ariel Drehobl spoke to the public radio program Marketplace about rising energy costs, inefficient homes, and unequal energy burdens. 
  • ACEEE’s report on the potential of efficiency and demand response investments in Texas to address peak loads was covered by Utility Dive, Power Engineering, and the Houston Chronicle (subscription required).
  • MIC‘s “Temp Check” climate advice column cited ACEEE’s GreenerCars ratings. 



ACEEE is needed more than ever on our carbon-challenged planet, so let’s do everything we can to make its next 40 years even more productive.”

—Dan Reicher, executive director of Stanford University’s Steyer-Taylor Center for Energy Policy and Finance

 ACEEE has played an indispensable role in tracking [efficiency] progress, pointing to challenges and opportunities and keeping our eye on the prize: getting the biggest bang out of every dollar spent on energy.”

—Susan Tierney, senior advisor, Analysis Group

“For more than 10 years, ACEEE has been my go-to source for in-depth research, thought leadership, and industry connections for all things energy efficiency.”

—Pete Curtice, CEO, American Efficient

“For new energy approaches to thrive, it’s vital to have strong policy and technical analysis, credible research, and collaborative outreach. ACEEE provides that support and much more.”

—James J. Judge, chairman, president, and chief executive officer, Eversource Energy


2020 Annual Report

Congressional Testimony

View ACEEE Testimony

Where We've Been

  • 2010–2019
    • Helped set new U.S. product efficiency standards, which will avoid three billion metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions by 2030 and save hundreds of billions of dollars.
    • Led efforts to hike heavy-duty vehicle fuel economy standards, which will reduce average fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions of new trucks and buses by 37% from 2010 levels.
  • 2000–2009
    • Led efforts to establish CAFE provisions (2007) and heavy-duty fuel economy standards, spurring an increase in the average new car’s fuel economy from 20.6 miles per gallon in 2007 to 24.9 mpg in 2017, to a projected 36.0 mpg in 2025.
    • Led efforts to expand appliance standards to 23 additional products, including light bulbs, through 2005 and 2007 U.S. legislation.
  • 1990–1999
    • Helped launch the voluntary ENERGY STAR® program, which helps consumers find energy-efficient products and improves the efficiency of buildings and homes.
    • Led efforts to include lamp, motor, and HVAC standards in the Energy Policy Act of 1992, which will achieve cumulative energy bill savings of $340 billion by 2035.
  • 1980–1989
    • Led efforts to develop and adopt U.S. energy efficiency appliance standards, which now save a typical household about $500 each year on utility bills.
    • Played key role in defending and expanding the Department of Energy’s energy R&D programs.
© 2021 All rights reserved.