Utah Clean Energy - reducing pollution by saving energy

Improving Air Quality Through Energy Efficiency

 Utah Clean Energy is thrilled to partner with UCAIR to educate building owners and facility managers about how our homes and buildings can help address Utah's air quality problems.

 The "Clean Energy = Clean Air" project was launched to bridge the gap between our air quality and energy consumption. Through this unique project, Utah Clean Energy will engage Utah businesses to increase awareness of the link between energy consumption in buildings and our local air quality, and provide immediate access to the tools and resources to decrease their energy use. This educational campaign will be coupled with efforts to launch C-PACE financing in Utah, which will enable the commercial and industrial sectors to dramatically reduce their energy consumption and the associated criteria air pollutants generated from their business operations.

Cean Energy  Clean Air

UCAIR partner logo

UCE is thrilled to partner with UCAIR to educate building owners and facility managers about how our homes and buildings can help address Utah’s air quality problems.

Monday, 11 April 2016 09:24

Utah Homes Get Energy Equivalent to MPG

Utah Adopts the “Energy Rating Index” into the State Energy Code

The State of Utah has joined the ranks of only seven other states to incorporate the “Energy Rating Index” into the energy conservation code for new homes. This is one of the successful outcomes from Utah Clean Energy’s work during 2016 Legislative Session. The new Energy Rating Index method, which becomes part of Utah’s residential energy code on July 1, 2016, utilizes the HERS Index, as a method for builders to show compliance with the updated energy code. The ERI is important because it helps homebuyers compare the energy costs of new homes on the market today! Think of it like comparing the miles-per-gallon rating when shopping for a new car.

What this means for Utah is that Utah homebuilders can use the Energy Rating Index as a tool to show that they have complied with new building energy code. They can get the rating by having a certified Home Energy Rater assess the energy efficiency of a home, assigning it a relative energy performance score. The lower the number, the more energy efficient the home.

Understanding the Rating

According to the U.S. Department of Energy:

  • A typical resale home scores 130 on the HERS Index
  • A standard new home is awarded a rating of 100.
  • Local example, Garbett Homes is a local homebuilder that specializes in super-efficient homes.  Their average homes receive a HERS Rating of between 40 and 50, making theirs some of the most energy efficient homes available.

Builders that want to comply with the new energy code via the ERI method must achieve a score between 65 and 69, depending on where in Utah the home is built. Get a deep dive into the scoring here.

Tuesday, 21 October 2014 00:00

Utah Industrial Energy Efficiency Challenge

UIEECWe often overlook the impact energy waste in our buildings has on the air we breathe. We can help improve our air quality by reducing energy consumed by Utah's largest energy customers – the industrial sector. Utah's industrial sector alone consumes 29% of all the energy consumption in the State including 32.4% of the state's electricity consumption. With energy use like this there are plenty of opportunities to stop energy waste.

The Utah Industrial Energy Efficiency Challenge is a voluntary program that encourages new and ongoing investment in energy efficiency by Utah manufacturing and industrial companies. The two-part Challenge includes peer-to-peer networking workshops and technical trainings, followed by public recognition of leading industrial firms.

Best Practies in Industrial Energy Efficiency: Project Profiles

The Business Case for Energy Efficiency


Project Profile: 2015 Clean Room with LED Lighting
Efficiency Leadership in Healthcare Manufacturing


Project Profile: Comprehensive Energy Management

Upgraded Equipment Pump up Energy Savings


Project Profile: Tailings Pumps Variable
Frequency Drive


Congratulations to the 2016 Excellence in Energy Efficiency Awardees 

To recognize Utah's industrail energy efficiency leaders, the Governor’s Office of Energy Development in partnership with Utah Clean Energy honored three innovative companies with the "Excellence in Energy Efficiency Award" for their success in dramatically reducing enery waste in their buildings. To read the full News Release Click Here

2016 Winners

CVZ 3003 edit CVZ 3015 CVZ 3021

 Futura Industries 

 Jordan Valley Water Conservancy District

Holcim (US) Inc. 

Other Finalists

 From Left to Right: 

JR Simplot - BD Medical - Varian Medical

For additional information contact Mitalee Gupta:

Project Skyline: Advancing City-Wide Energy Savings

Utah Clean Energy is honored to partner with Salt Lake City on the Project Skyline initiative. Project Skyline is a "cornerstone initiative of Sustainable Salt Lake – Plan 2015, which is designed to dramatically cut energy waste and associated air pollution in buildings across Salt Lake City, while creating local jobs, and increasing the economic vitality of Salt Lake City.

The Latest

The Mayor's Skyline Challenge encourages building owners to meet ambitious air quality and energy savings goals. Participants evaluate their buildings energy use, set energy goals, and implement energy buildingsprojects. Buildings and facilities that lead the way in energy savings will receive special recognition from the City.  Interested building and facility owners can join the Challenge now.

Making it Easier to Measure Energy Use – Automated Benchmarking
Measuring and benchmarking a building's energy consumption is the first step to stopping energy waste, saving money and cutting pollution. Since late 2014 Utah Clean Energy has partnered with Salt Lake City, the US Department of Energy, and Rocky Mountain Power to accelerate automated access to building energy data. We are thrilled to report that Rocky Mountain Power will soon launch a new automated benchmarking platform that makes it easy for building owners and managers to automatically upload energy consumption data into EPA's free energy benchmarking program, ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager.  This program gives buildings a score similar to a miles per gallon metric for vehicles.  Questar Gas is expected to follow suite soon, making energy benchmarking simple and seamless!    

Imagine never receiving a bill for your energy usage. With a zero energy home, monthly charges for lighting and heating become a thing of the past! By building smart from the start and using energy-saving (and energy-producing) technology, new homes can be constructed to produce all the energy they need using renewable sources. There are two pieces to zero energy construction: energy-efficient building technology that eliminates leaks and other causes of wasted energy, and clean energy technology like wind, solar, and geothermal. It all adds up to zero out your energy usage (and the hit to your wallet each month!)

The Latest

Builders are proving that zero energy construction doesn't have to be expensive or resemble something from a science-fiction movie. We promote the latest tools and resources to Utah contractors, architects, and engineers to help make super-efficient and zero energy buildings a reality in Utah.

  • As a training partner for the U.S. Department of Energy's Challenge Home program, Utah Clean Energy hosted training for local builders in the fall of 2013. The Challenge Home program provides technical specifications and recognition for leading home builders who are constructing buildings that increase energy efficiency, improve indoor air quality, and make homes "zero net-energy ready."

  • ASHRAE and its partners produced the Advanced Energy Design Guides, free building design guides that can be used to build cost-effective commercial buildings that exceed the minimum energy code requirements by 30% to 50%.

  • The Zero Energy Commercial Building Consortium, a public/private consortium of commercial building stakeholders working with the U.S. Department of Energy, develops reports, resources, and case studies and holds events to advance zero energy buildings across the U.S. Utah Clean Energy is a member of the CBC.

  • Download the DOE Zero Energy Ready Home Training:
     - Part 1
     - Part 2
     - Part 3
     - Part 4


Wednesday, 13 November 2013 00:00

Efficiency Incentives

The following table provides a quick summary of the various types of incentives available to builders, to the residential sector and the commercial/non-residential sector. Please be sure to consult with an expert and review all the guidelines and rules carefully.


Incentive Type  

Grants/Other Financing


Varies by Utility (see below)

Energy-Efficient New Homes Tax Credit for Home Builders 





Varies by utility
(see below)

Federal Residential Energy Efficiency Tax Credit


 Energy-Efficient Mortgages

Residential Energy Conservation Subsidy Exclusion


Commercial & Non-Residential


Varies by utility
(see below)

Energy-Efficient Commercial Buildings Tax Deduction



Residential Energy Conservation Subsidy Exclusion

 Utility-Scale & Manufacturing 








Schools & Local Government





Utah State Facility Energy Efficiency Fund

Utah Revolving Loan Fund




Tribal Energy Program Grant

Other Energy Efficiency Incentives:


Residential Incentives:

Commercial Incentives:

  • Tax credits: Utah offers commercial entities that install solar an Investment Tax Credit that is worth 10% of the cost of system, up to $50,000. A comprehensive summary of the 30% Federal Investment Tax Credit is available here.

Another Commercial Incentive comes in the form of Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy (C-PACE) that allows commercial properties to install Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy up grades with little or no upfront cost. Click here to learn more.

Resources & Technical Assisstance:

Summary of All Utah Solar Policies, Incentives, and Financing Programs (DSIRE) 

Published in How To
Wednesday, 02 October 2013 00:00

Commercial Clean Energy Financing (C-PACE)

Allow us to introduce you to the most exciting coupling since peanut butter and chocolate: clean energy projects + property tax assessments! Trust us on this one. One of the main hurdles to investments in energy efficiency and renewable energy is upfront costs. A new financing mechanism (known as Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy, or "C-PACE," financing) allows businesses to get loans for building energy or water conservation improvements and pay it back through a voluntary property tax assessment. The annual utility bill savings from the improvements are greater than the annual payments, thus helping businesses reduce operating costs from day one! Plus, the tax assessment stays with property, not the property-owner. So if the building is sold, the benefits of that investment and the obligation to repay the loan pass to the new owner.

The Benefits of PACE

1. No up-front cash required
2. Low interest rates
3. Immediate energy savings make investment
cash-flow positive from day one
4. Increased Property Value
5. Costs and savings may be shared with tenants
6. Not based on business credit
7. Preserve cash for other needs
8. Loan remains with the property
9. Loan does not show up as debt on your balance sheet
10. Hedge against rising energy costs
11. Local economic development and job creation
12. Improved air quality

For a quick overview of C-PACE, check out our C-PACE Brochure.  For detailed information or to apply to participate, visit the Utah Office of Energy Development's C-PACE website: http://energy.utah.gov/utah-c-pace/

The Latest

More clean energy means more clean air! Thanks to our partnership with UCAIR, Utah Clean Energy drafted a state-wide model C-PACE program for Utah. As part of the year-long development process we assembled an Advisory Committee comprised of over 75 local government representatives, business leaders, attorneys, and financial institutions to identify best practices and get Utah's C-PACE program up and running.

In 2015, Utah Clean Energy worked with the Utah Governor's Office of Energy Development to refine guidelines for Utah's C-PACE program, thanks to support from the U.S. Department of Energy's Solar Market Pathways program.

As the administrator for Utah's C-PACE program, the Utah Governor's Office of Energy Development is now accepting applications from potential C-PACE projects, from municipalities who would like to opt-in to C-PACE, and from companies seeking to become an approved contractor.  Learn more at the Office of Energy Development's C-PACE website: http://energy.utah.gov/utah-c-pace/

If you are interested in learning more about using C-PACE to finance your building upgrades, or for more information, please contact the Govenor's Office of Energy Development: 

C-PACE Nationwide

Utah now proudly joins the ranks of over 31 states and the District of Columbia that allow C-PACE financing. This summary of eight existing commercial PACE programs from across the U.S. demonstrates the wide range of options employed by PACE programs and provides ideas for best practices used in the development of Utah's C-PACE Model Program. This massive document is not for the casual reader, but feel free to dive in to learn about various C-PACE program options in the United States.

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