(ARLINGTON, VA.) — National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) CEO Jo Ann Emerson today expressed appreciation for the House passage of S. 535, the “Energy Efficiency Improvement Act of 2015.” This long-awaited bill is vital to more than 250 co-ops utilizing large-capacity electric resistance water heaters (ERWH) for demand-response programs. Collectively, the co-op programs can reduce demand by an estimated 500 megawatts, saving consumers hundreds of millions of dollars.


Electric co-ops across the country appreciate the incredible perseverance of Senators Portman, Shaheen, and many others for their leadership in passing S. 535,” said Emerson. “The bill helps save consumers money, promotes reliability of the grid, and helps integrate renewable energy – truly a win-win-win piece of legislation.”


The Energy Efficiency Improvement Act of 2015 establishes a new efficiency standard that applies to large-capacity waters deployed in demand response programs. A separate Department of Energy water heater efficiency standard went into effect on April 16, 2015.


NRECA publicly thanks Majority Leader McCarthy, Energy & Commerce Committee Chairman Upton, Ranking Member Pallone, Reps. Clyburn, Rush, Welch, Whitfield and many others who provided leadership in getting this bill across the finish line. NRECA also thanks Senators Portman, Shaheen, Hoeven, Klobuchar, Murkowski and Cantwell for shepherding this bill through the Senate.

The National Rural Electric Cooperative Association is the national service organization that represents the nation’s more than 900 private, not-for-profit, consumer-owned electric cooperatives, which provide service to 42 million people in 47 states.