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Germany leads energy efficiency rankings; Saudi Arabia marks debut at 23rd position

The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) evaluated countries using 35 policy and performance metrics spread over four categories: Buildings, industry, transportation, and overall national energy efficiency efforts.

| | Jul 25, 2016 | 11:06 am
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Washington DC, United States: Germany has been ranked number one in energy efficiency, followed by Italy and Japan (tied for second place), France and the United Kingdom (not reflecting energy-related government changes in 2016), according to the 2016 International Energy Efficiency Scorecard, published on July 20 by the non-profit American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE). New to the rankings this year, a press release said, are eight nations:  Indonesia, Netherlands, Poland, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Taiwan, Thailand, and Turkey.

Currently in its third edition, the ACEEE report observed that the United States rose in the international rankings from number 13 in 2014 to 8 in 2016.

Giving further details, the press release revealed that on a scale of 100 possible points in 35 categories, the nations were ranked by ACEEE as follows:  Germany (1), Italy (2, tied), Japan (2, tied), France (4), United Kingdom (5), China (6), Spain (7), South Korea (8, tied), United States (8, tied), Canada (10), Netherlands (11), Poland (12), Taiwan (13), India (14), Turkey (15), Australia (16), Russia (17), Indonesia (18), Mexico (19), Thailand (20), South Africa (21), Brazil (22), Saudi Arabia (23).

Together, these countries, the press release added, represent 75% of all the energy consumed on the planet and over 80% of the world’s gross domestic product (GDP).

The press release said that the Council evaluated each country using 35 policy and performance metrics spread over four categories: Buildings, industry, transportation, and overall national energy efficiency efforts. It further said that Germany scored the most points in the national efforts, buildings and industry categories, while India tied with Italy and Japan for first place in transportation.

The United States rank, ACEEE highlighted, was boosted by high scores in a number of new metrics added to the report for 2016, as well as improvements in energy intensity, or energy use per dollar of GDP; in addition to benefitting from changes to the scoring methodology, which now allocates more weight to policy actions. The Council added that its report outlines a number of international best practices that the country could implement to improve its score.

“Energy efficiency is often the lowest-cost means of meeting new demand for energy,” said Steven Nadel, Executive Director of ACEEE. “Governments that encourage investment in energy efficiency and implement supporting policies save citizens money, reduce dependence on energy imports, and reduce pollution. Yet energy efficiency remains massively underutilised globally, despite its proven multiple benefits and its potential to become the single largest resource to meet growing energy demand worldwide.”

German Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy Senior Advisor for General Issues of Energy Efficiency, Georg Maue, said: “Energy Efficiency plays a key role in Germany’s energy policy, the Energiewende, which aims to achieve a highly efficient and almost carbon neutral economy by 2050 at the latest. Our latest program, the National Action Plan on Energy Efficiency (NAPE), focuses on innovative industrial processes, energy-efficient buildings and products, and long-term investments.”

He added that Germany will continue to step up efforts, as the target of reducing the energy demand by 50% by 2050 is still a long way.

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