Trialling a multiple benefits indicator framework for residential and community energy efficiency programs in NSW
Jennifer Wood and Nina Bailey
Organisation of Presenter:
NSW Office of Environment and Heritage, Australia
The NSW Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH) has been delivering and evaluating residential and community energy savings programs since 2007. OEH has traditionally focused on measuring the energy savings achieved from these programs. With the increasing recognition internationally that energy efficiency offers multiple benefits in addition to reduced energy demand and lower greenhouse gas emissions, OEH is seeking to better understand these multiple benefits.
While residential energy savings can be easily quantified through reduction in energy use and utility bill savings, there has yet to arise an agreed way to capture the broader non-energy benefits such as health and wellbeing, employment and program partnerships. There is a particular lack of published measurement of non-energy benefits in a NSW or even an Australian context. The early research in this field is primarily from the UK and New Zealand, both of which have different climatic conditions to NSW.
To provide a consistent approach to measure the multiple benefits across programs, OEH has developed and is trialling a “Multiple Benefits Indicator Framework”. The Framework provides guidance to program managers on collecting evidence of the potential broader impacts of their activities. As the NSW Government explores new opportunities to partner with organisations to deliver its programs, measuring and demonstrating multiple benefits can provide compelling evidence of the broader benefits of energy efficiency that may also be important to partner organisations.
This presentation outlines how the Multiple Benefits Indicator Framework was developed and how it is being trialled in OEH’s residential and community energy efficiency programs. The Framework aims to provide methodological rigour, be feasible to implement and align with other programs for comparability. The presentation discusses some of the challenges and learnings experienced through the development and trialling of the Framework, with a focus on OEH’s partnerships with Community Housing Providers via the Home Energy Action Program for low income households.