A survey by market research firm Gartner found that while electric utilities are increasingly offering energy efficiency programs to willing consumers, more than half of respondents were unsure if such programs wer e available from their service provider. The problem is not marketing, says Gartner, but rather that most utilities’ regulations require them to sell more power to increase profits, giving them little incentive to encourage customers to reduce their carbon footprints. The study predicts that about two-thirds of utilities in the developed world will have some form of efficiency initiatives in place by 2012, but have little incentive to implement them.

But utilities in some regions in California, Canada, and Australia are rolling out effective initiatives due to decoupling structures, meaning their revenue is not directly tied to how much power they sell. Some analysts are suggesting that the US government will focus on stricter regulations requiring a 10% demand reduction by 2020 rather than a decoupling plan. (Source: CNN, June 10, 2009)

Contact: Tom McCall, Gartner, (408) 468-8101, tom.mccall@gartner.com, www.gartner.com