Efficiency NS corporation to be created
Legislation to create an independent administrator to help Nova Scotians cut electricity use was introduced today, Oct. 23.
“ We want to ensure that electricity remains affordable for Nova Scotians,” said Bill Estabrooks, Minister for Conserve Nova Scotia. “Efficiency and conservation programs will help Nova Scotians manage their electricity costs, so they can use less energy and save money on their power bills.”
The legislation will create an independent electricity efficiency administrator called the Efficiency Nova Scotia Corporation. It establishes a fund that is dedicated to deliver electricity efficiency programs and gives the Utility and Review Board (UARB) regulatory oversight of the new administrator, electricity-efficiency fund and programs. It also allows the new corporation to manage energy efficiency and conservation pro- grams other than electricity.
The UARB approved electricity-efficiency expenditures of $3.2 million in 2008, $9.7 million in 2009 and $22.6 million in 2010. As the interim administrator of electricity-efficiency programs, Nova Scotia Power will continue to manage electricity-efficiency programs until the corporation is operational.
A number of electricity-efficiency programs are available, including directinstall lighting for small business, housing-efficiency upgrades for low-income families, a commercial and industrial custom program and an efficient-lighting products awareness campaign. Electricity rebates are also available for new home construction and homeowners who make energy upgrades to homes through the Nova Scotia EnerGuide for Houses program.
The new administrator is expected to be in place next spring. The province plans to have the new corporation manage many of the energy-efficiency and conservation programs currently being delivered through Conserve Nova Scotia.
“ To simplify the process for accessing energy-efficiency and conservation programs, and avoid duplication of services, we believe that a single access point for Nova Scotians through the new energyefficiency corporation is the best solution,” said Mr. Estabrooks. “Government also hopes that the new energy efficiency corporation draws on the necessary expertise, including employees from Conserve Nova Scotia, to get the new corporation up and running as soon as possible.”
David Wheeler, dean of Dalhousie University’s faculty of management, led a consultation to determine who should administer electricity-efficiency programs. The report recommended the creation of an independent electricityefficiency entity, reporting to a board of directors, and overseen by the UARB under the Public Utilities Act.