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Maryland is tenth in the country when it comes to saving energy, according to the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy. One big reason is the 2008 Empower Maryland Act, now in effect, that requires utilities to help their customers save energy.
"You can get somebody who's been trained by the state, they'll come out, do an energy assessment of your home, and make recommendations of what your home needs, customized to your particular situation," says Malcolm Woolf, Director of the Maryland Energy Administration. "And you can get up to 50 percent off on implementing those measures right now through a combination of state and utility incentives."
He says 1,500 families have taken advantage of the program. The incentives are available through the Maryland Energy Administration Website.
Michael Sciortino, a senior research analyst at the ACEEE, put the ranking together. He says Virginia is far behind at number 34.
"Virginia has strong building energy codes, so they're buildings are built smart from the start," says Sciortino. "But businesses and home owners don't have a lot of opportunity to use rebates for efficient appliances or lighting; they have to do it on their own. And a lot of consumers don't know much about their options. So across the board, other than building energy codes, Virginia is not really doing much."
Sciortino had high marks for D.C.,which came in at number 22, for its Sustainable Energy Utility, which helps customers find ways to save energy.