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senate Bill S. 1392

Making Businesses and Homes More Energy-Efficient

Argument in favor

The government has a role to play in fostering energy efficiency projects in the public and private sectors. Spending money on these projects will save money and conserve resources in the long run.

Argument opposed

If the financial benefits of these energy efficiency projects are so obvious, businesses and homeowners should be able to undertake them without the assistance of the government.

bill Progress

  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The house has not voted
  • The senate has not voted
    IntroducedJuly 30th, 2013

What is Senate Bill S. 1392?

This bill aims to create a national energy efficiency strategy by promoting upgrades to residential and commercial buildings that would reduce energy costs. It would also create a program to train workers on the processes involved in retrofitting and operating energy efficient commercial buildings.

In spite of this broad support (across the aisle and from some 270 environmental advocacy groups and business trade organizations) previous versions of this bill have failed to pass beyond the amendment process.


Homeowners, businesses, state and local planning departments, SBA, DOE, GSA, OMB.

Cost of Senate Bill S. 1392

$350.00 Million
A CBO cost estimate of this version of the bill is unavailable. However, Bloomberg reports that this version will likely cost $350 million over five years. The National Resource Defense Council offers a more precise, but similar estimate at $357 million over that period. This represents a decrease from a previous iteration of this legislation that was projected to cost $600 million. The change is caused by the elimination of a program that would have financed commercial energy efficiency improvements.

More Information

In Depth:

S. 1392 directs the Department of Energy (DOE) Secretary help update national building codes to promote energy efficiency. While trying to meet energy saving goals, these updates should also encourage and support of state and local governments in adopting building codes that meet or exceed the national codes for energy efficiency.

This bill would provide funding for grants to establish training and assessment centers at higher education institutions. These would be used to identify concepts and technologies for improving a building’s energy performance. DOE grants would also be offered to eligible nonprofit partnerships to pay the federal share of career skills training for students obtaining a certification to install energy efficient technologies.

The head of the Small Business Administration (SBA) would be required to streamline the consideration of applications from eligible small businesses for loans under the Small Business Act. These applicants would be empowered to implement recommendations of the industrial research and assessment centers.

The Secretary would also have to set goals for reducing waste, conserving natural resources, and preventing pollution — while also issuing guidance for federal agencies to employ advanced tools that promote energy efficiency.

The General Services Administration (GSA) would be authorized to update building designs to meet energy efficiency guidelines for projects that have received congressional funding.

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) would be required to develop and publish a goal for the total amount of increased productivity, in addition to energy and cost savings from the consolidation of federal data centers during the next five years. The Department of Defense (DOD) would be exempted from this goal.  


Sponsoring Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) Press Release



Natural Resources Defense Council Issue Brief (In Favor)

The Heritage Foundation (Opposed)

(Photo Credit: US News)


Energy Savings and Industrial Competitiveness Act of 2013

Official Title

A bill to promote energy savings in residential buildings and industry, and for other purposes.

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