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Energy Efficiency Policies and Practices in Wisconsin

State Government

Beyond simply enacting legislation and regulations to advance energy efficiency within the state's residential, commercial, and industrial sectors, state (as well as county and municipal) governments can also provide vision and leadership for their constituents.

Leading by Example

By having an agency dedicated to energy policies, setting goals for reduction of energy use by state agencies, establishing high standards for the efficiency of state-owned and operated buildings, and implementing policies that promote energy efficiency in public-service buildings, government demonstrate the value of energy efficiency and reduce the amount of the state's revenue that is spent on energy purchases. Every Midwestern state has a state energy office and many have adopted other policies aimed at managing the state’s energy consumption as well as encouraging others to follow its lead.


State Energy Office

Wisconsin's State Energy Office is located within the state's Department of Administration. 

The State Energy Office (SEO) is committed to supporting Wisconsin's goal of: generating electric power and transportation fuels from renewable resources; capturing more of the emerging bioindustry and renewable energy market; and leading the nation in groundbreaking research that will make clean energy more affordable and will create good paying Wisconsin jobs.

Visit the Wisconsin State Energy Office website. Check out NASEO's Wisconsin page.

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State Energy Plan or Vision

In 2008, the Wisconsin Task Force on Global Warming finalized an action plan which included energy efficiency, in addition to renewable energy and a proposed carbon trading schema, as a policy recommendation for addressing the reduction of global warming-causing emissions within the state. With the subsequent change of administrations, that plan has not been updated and Wisconsin does not have an up-to-date comprehensive statewide energy vision document.

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State Agency Energy Reduction Requirement

Wisconsin's Department of Administration, Division of State Facilities, houses the State of Wisconsin Performance Contracting program to allow the DoA to enter into contracts with Energy Service Companies (ESCOs) to develop and implement energy cost saving measures for state buildings. The program includes guidelines for ESCO contracting and a list of approved ESCOs.

The authority for this program comes from state law: Wis. Stat. 66.0133, and is codified in Wis. Code 16.847 and Wis. Code 16.858.

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EE in New State Buildings

Governor Doyle's Executive Order No. 145 (2006) required the Department of Administration to set energy efficiency goals for state facilities, office buildings, complexes, and campuses. New state facilities were required to be 30% more efficient than the state's commercial building code.

Governor Walker's Executive Order No. 63 (2012) revised and superceded that order to reduce the efficiency goal to 10% above code, reflecting a stringency increase in the commercial building code since EO#145 was issued.

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Recognition or Award Program

Wisconsin used to award the Governor’s Award for Excellence in Energy Efficiency, but no longer does so.

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Read the report that accompanies these pages:
Energy Efficiency Policies, Programs, and Practices in the Midwest:
A Resource Guide for Policymakers (2014 Edition)

►more information about the Resource Guide