Press Releases

Sen. Carper Commends Federal Agencies' Efforts to Reduce Energy Use

Progress Reports Show Agencies Need More Assistance to Meet Money-Saving Energy Reduction Goals

Nov 01 2011

WASHINGTON – Today, Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.) commended multiple federal agencies on their improved efforts to reduce the government's energy use. In progress reports released Monday, numerous federal agencies, including the Department of Defense and Department of the Interior, listed what they are doing as well as what they plan to do in order to meet the President's goal of cutting the federal government's greenhouse gas emissions by 28 percent by 2020.

"Given the tremendous budget challenges we face, we need to look at every nook and cranny of the federal government for savings," said Sen. Carper. "Reducing the enormous amount of money we spend on energy in the federal government is one clear way we can cut costs. While I am encouraged by the progress agencies have made to reduce their energy consumption and by their ambitious plans to make further improvements, we cannot stop here. Agencies must continue to implement these money-saving policies and Congress must continue to provide those agencies with the tools and resources they need to make implementation possible. That's why I introduced the Reducing Federal Energy Dollars Act of 2011(R-FED), which would strengthen federal energy management efforts by encouraging and supporting energy efficiency and renewable energy use in federal facilities. As we learned from this report, federal agencies are already pursuing many ideas and technologies to reduce the amount of energy they consume. Many of these proven technologies have resulted in financial savings that have more than paid for the initial financial investment. My bill would not only help agencies save money but also allow the federal government to lead by example in becoming more environmentally sustainable and less reliant on foreign sources of energy. I look forward to working with my colleagues in Congress and the Administration to ensure that we continue to save taxpayer dollars by making our government more energy efficient."

The federal government is the single largest energy user in the nation. In fiscal year 2008, the total energy consumption of Federal Government buildings and operations was roughly 1.5 percent of all energy consumption in the U.S. The energy bill for the Federal Government that year was $24.5 billion or about 0.8 percent of total Federal expenditures. Of that $24.5 billion, over $7 billion was spent on energy to operate Federal buildings alone.

The Reducing Federal Energy Dollars Act of 2011(R-FED), introduced in June, includes proposals to improve accountability and transparency of energy and water consumption by federal agencies: extending the use of Energy Savings Performance Contracts to vehicles; updating federal building energy efficiency performance standards; and requiring better management of computer energy use at federal agencies. Last week, Sen. Carper and a group of his Senate colleagues sent a letter to the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction urging the Committee to seek savings in federal energy costs through a number of clean energy and energy efficiency strategies, including provisions in his R-FED legislation.

Sen. Carper's most recent efforts on improving the federal government's energy efficiency follow the implementation of his bill, the Federal Buildings Personnel Training Act of 2010, which ensures that federal employees who operate and maintain our federal facilities have the training and resources they need to safeguard our nation's significant investment in energy efficient buildings.

To view the progress reports, please visit: http://sustainability.performance.gov/

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