US Panorama 2014 (slight revision, Oct-2014)

Regardless of one's thinking or feeling about climate issues in the 21st century, the situation in the United States is that, although many people still feel fervently about impending climate doom, the message of the doomsayers has become tiresome. This is especially so given the evolving imperial nature of the presidency, in concert with disturbing incompetence of the governing class at addressing the destruction of the middle class, the continuing lack of jobs, and the split performance of the economy, where the rich are easily able to keep increasing wealth but the ranks of the poor keep increasing. Regardless of political party, the divide keeps increasing, possibly worse under current leadership.

So the top issues to Americans in 2014 are all economic. Global warming is at the bottom of the heap on major issues of concern.

In the energy performance measurement arena, rating and scoring systems have proliferated to the point that it's challenging to even keep track of them all. To the extent that property owners see value in obtaining scores or certifications, momentum for the use of such systems or tools continues to grow. A recent report by the International Partnership for Energy Efficiency Cooperation summarizes current knowledge well ( download report here).

The focus on individual buildings in the United States has not led to much, if any, recognition that some type of empirical performance rating for states is needed. Although there are subjective rating systems that have been developed, current empirical evidence ( see this website) does not support the subjective ratings results.

In contrast, Europe has seen the need to move toward state-level performance evaluation and target setting ( see the Panorama Europe 2013 discussion on this website), although there is still skepticism about how useful or effective the state level efforts will be.

Of interest here is how long it will take the United States to begin testing or evaluating state-level energy performance measurement systems.