The EMV Forum requested the preparation of a scoping paper with the purpose of improving Forum members’ understanding of how net energy savings is defined, how stakeholders use net savings, and the opportunities and barriers to increasing the consistency of and quality in net savings definitions and measurement in the region. Three issues motivated the request for the study: 1) the prevailing lack of consistency in definitions and measurement in the Northeast; 2) expanded use of energy savings estimates by diverse audiences, particularly with applications to climate change policies; and 3) increasing challenges of determining program “attribution”—that is, demonstrating that an energy efficiency program in a given year caused savings to occur in the face of extensive prior program activity and the existence of additional influences promoting efficient actions. The paper explores these topics through a literature review of over 100 sources, interviews with 12 experts on energy efficiency programs and air regulation, and feedback from Forum members. The paper captures the perspectives of energy and air regulators, program administrators, and energy efficiency and other social science evaluators.
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