Testimony at the Maine Legislature
by Sue Jones, NRCM energy project director
Thank you for the opportunity to submit comments on behalf of the Natural Resources Council of Maine (Council). I am Sue Jones, and am the Energy Project Director for the Council. I live in Freeport. The Council is a public interest, nonprofit organization that seeks to protect and conserve Maine’s environment for now and future generations. As part of the Council’s work, we advocate for clean air and energy measures, including those that reduce air and global warming pollution.
LD 1435 will set minimum energy efficiency standards for 19 consumer products not covered by federal standards.
The Council supports LD 1435 because:
1. These standards will permanently reduce energy consumption by 164,500 megawatt hours and 619 billion Btus per year. This is equivalent to permanently reducing thousands of tons of air and global warming pollution in Maine.
By 2020, these reductions would be equivalent to the following annual avoided pollution:
Carbon dioxide emissions avoided: 54,300 metric tons per year
Sulfur dioxide emissions avoided: 147 metric tons per year
Nitrogen oxides emissions avoided: 78 metric tons per year
To put this in a different perspective, this is equivalent to the energy and heating use of nearly 30,400 households.
2. Reducing air and global warming pollution generated or coming into Maine will reduce dangerous public health impacts to Maine.
The primary culprits of air pollution in Maine are nitrogen oxides, sulfur dioxides, carbon dioxide, mercury, and particulate soot. Each threatens Maine’s public health and permanently harms our environment.
3. In addition, reducing air and global warming pollution generated or coming into Maine will reduce costly impacts to our environment and natural resources, namely:
4. The Governor, the DEP, and the Climate Change Stakeholders Group unanimously support adoption of energy efficiency standards as a high priority action for reducing global warming pollution in Maine, and to meet our State reduction goals by 2010 and 2020.
5. Passage of LD 1435 will help to reduce global warming pollution in Maine. Global warming is a threat that will have real impacts to Maine. Some of the expected outcomes caused by global warming pollution in Maine include:
We urge you to pass L.D. 1435 to reduce energy consumption and its impacts to public health and the environment in Maine and downwind.
 Based on average use in New England households.
 ALA’s “Respiratory Health Indicators For Maine Annual Report” (February 2004).
 EPA’s “EPA New England: Ground-level Ozone and Ozone Non-Attainment Areas in New England”, 21 July 2004.
 Note that the concept of appliance standards was unanimously supported by stakeholders, not this particular bill.