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(a) The legislature finds that energy savings are an energy resource, and that cost-effective energy savings are preferred over all other energy resources. In addition, the legislature finds that optimizing the timing and method used by energy consumers to manage energy use provides significant benefits to the consumers and to the utility system as a whole. The legislature further finds that cost-effective energy savings and load management programs should be procured systematically and aggressively in order to reduce utility costs for businesses and residents, improve the competitiveness and profitability of businesses, create more energy-related jobs, reduce the economic burden of fuel imports, and reduce pollution and emissions that cause climate change. Therefore, it is the energy policy of the state of Minnesota to achieve annual energy savings equivalent to at least 2.5 percent of annual retail energy sales of electricity and natural gas through multiple measures, including but not limited to:

(1) cost-effective energy conservation improvement programs and efficient fuel-switching utility programs under sections 216B.2402 to 216B.241;

(2) rate design;

(3) energy efficiency achieved by energy consumers without direct utility involvement;

(4) advancements in statewide energy codes and cost-effective appliance and equipment standards;

(5) programs designed to transform the market or change consumer behavior;

(6) energy savings resulting from efficiency improvements to the utility infrastructure and system; and

(7) other efforts to promote energy efficiency and energy conservation.

(b) A utility is encouraged to design and offer to customers load management programs that enable: (1) customers to maximize the economic value gained from the energy purchased from the customer's utility service provider; and (2) utilities to optimize the infrastructure and generation capacity needed to effectively serve customers and facilitate the integration of renewable energy into the energy system.

(c) The commissioner must provide a reasonable estimate of progress made toward the statewide energy-savings goal under paragraph (a) in the annual report required under section 216B.241, subdivision 1c, and make recommendations for administrative or legislative initiatives to increase energy savings toward that goal. The commissioner must also annually report on the energy productivity of the state's economy by estimating the ratio of economic output produced in the most recently completed calendar year to the primary energy inputs used in that year.

Official Publication of the State of Minnesota
Revisor of Statutes