Latest Thinking on the Evolution of Energy

I first heard of Amory Lovins in the 1980s, when he created the concept of “Negawatts,” which recognized that saving energy was more cost-effective than creating new energy supplies, and aimed to give utilities an incentive to invest in energy efficiency. Before then utilities lost money whenever they saved energy. With “Negawatt Demand Side Management” programs, utilities were given incentives to save energy. For instance, instead of building another $4 billion power plant, utilities would spend $2 billion on energy efficiency measures that would save the same amount of energy. Society would gain from the environmental benefits; more jobs would be created than from building new power plants; ratepayers would save money; and the utilities could earn a profit from saving energy (instead of just making money on selling energy supply). This article introduces some of Lovins’s latest thinking on the evolution of energy in today’s New York Times…