Maryland, like all states, is now figuring out how to cut harmful power plant emissions, and for the Old Line State and others, this presents a unique opportunity to look at ways to also help an underserved market – low-income housing, who compared to those with average incomes can burn up much more of their budget on energy costs.
The best, cheapest way to cut emissions is to boost energy efficiency in our buildings so we don’t need to use as many dirty resources like coal to generate electricity. And while utilities often offer efficiency programs, these programs must expand to upgrade more multifamly housing which comprises almost a quarter of the stock in America (see latest housing survey here).
As part of NRDC's Efficiency for All Project team, I’ve been thinking about this a lot and today an opinion piece I co-authored with Ruth Ann Norton of the Green and Healthy Homes Initiative was published in the Baltimore Sun, Maryland’s largest newspaper.
The reasons Maryland should do this are outlined in the op-ed (click here to read more), including:
- Leading the way as one of the 27 states with energy efficiency targets already in place;
- having more than half-a-million multifamily homes in the state; and
- being home to many individual tenants with families who will benefit from having more control over their utility bills.
We can do this, we can deliver efficiency for all. I’m calling on my home state of Maryland to act, and our peers can all do the same!