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Tool Box Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy

In this time of record-high energy prices, recognition of the tie between national security and energy independence, utility system reliability and global climate change concerns, energy efficiency is a key approach among the remedies. A local government or business must act strategically to make the most of every Btu. This section will include links with information on how to measure current energy use and to create an energy plan with the technologies and practices, programs and policies that maximize energy efficiency and cost savings.

For additional information in Energy Efficiency, contact Sustainability Team members:
  • Municipal Clean Energy Toolkit
    Municipal Clean Energy Toolkit: Included within the Toolkit is guidance on how municipalities can finance, purchase, install, and promote clean energy.  The Toolkit contains material for any knowledge level – from municipal clean energy aficionado to beginner.  For those more familiar with clean energy, the search function, the drop down menu, and the clean energy quick links help you access specific information quickly. For users less familiar with clean energy, a navigational outline is provided.

  • Guide to Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy Financing Districts for Local Governments
    The City of Berkeley and the Renewable and Appropriate Energy Laboratory at the University of California, Berkeley, have released a guide for local governments on energy efficiency and renewable energy financing districts. The guide describes the process of setting up an Energy Financing District (EFD) program, including administrative, legal, and financial issues.

  • Climate Protection Toolkit for Small Communities
    International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI) - Local Governments for Sustainability has released a free resource to help communities with 25,000 people or fewer launch and maintain climate, energy, and sustainability initiatives. ICLEI's Small Communities Toolkit provides detailed resources, case studies, and insight to help small communities succeed despite limitations of staff and funding. The toolkit helps smaller communities understand how to take advantage of their significant opportunities.

  • Municipal Energy Planning: An Energy Efficiency Workbook
    This workbook provides a step-by-step guide for developing an energy efficiency (or energy conservation) plan for municipal governments. It was prepared by University of Wisconsin Cooperative Extension faculty serving on the statewide Energy Conservation and Sustainability Teams to address an educational need of elected officials and municipal staff to improve the energy efficiency of their facilities and operations. The workbook provides includes instruction on the following topics:

    • Getting started
    • Assessing current energy use and identifying energy issues
    • Evaluating the potential for municipal energy efficiency and conservation
    • Developing energy goals and evaluating options
    • Developing action plan
    By using this workbook as a guide and following the steps outlined in each of its sections, any municipality should be able to develop a usable energy efficiency plan.

  • UW-Extension Bio-Energy and Bio-Economy Team
    The purpose of the Bio-Energy and Bio-Economy Team is to build the capacity of Extension Agents and Educators to work with communities, residents and farmers to assess opportunities for developing a sustainable bioeconomy.  The Bio-Energy and Bio-Economy Team provides training, resources, public education, and networking opportunities for Extension Specialists on the technical, environmental, social, and economic aspects of the emerging bioeconomy.

  • Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy
    As the public debate and need for information and education builds around the topic of energy—both in Wisconsin and nationally--this site will provide Extension educators and the public with accurate, research-based, objective resources.

  • Property Assessed Clean Energy Programs
    This is a Department of Energy website that explains a financing structure that enables local governments to raise money through the issuance of bonds or other sources of capital to fund energy efficiency and renewable energy projects.  Provides resources and webcast presentations.

  • Best Municipal Practices for Energy Efficiency
    A number of municipalities in both Europe and North America have achieved outstanding success in reducing their energy use and profiting from energy efficiency, and can provide valuable lessons for other municipalities to follow. Several notable examples illustrating a range of possible financing mechanisms are presented.

  • Municipal Approaches to Energy Conservation and Renewable Energy
    A 2007 Cornell University report focusing on energy conservation and renewable energy case studies.

  • How State Governments Enable Local Governments to Advance Energy Efficiency
    A White Paper from the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy (2011) that discusses opportunities for state and local governments to collaborate and advance community energy efficiency.

  • WattzOn
    This site offers tools to compare energy use and bills to similar homes and to create a personalized plan to save and track energy.

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