State and Local Policy Database


State Scorecard Rank



14.0Scored out of 50Updated 9/2016
State Government
Score: 4 out of 6
State Government Summary List All

The state offers several consumer incentives for energy efficiency investments, including a wide-reaching property tax abatement for green buildings. The state government leads by example by requiring energy efficient buildings, benchmarking of energy use in public buildings, and encouraging the use of energy savings performance contracts. 

Financial Incentives List All

Financial Incentive information for Nevada is provided by the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (DSIRE Nevada). Information about additional incentives not present on DSIRE is listed here. In addition to the programs below, Nevada recently passed legislation enabling a state green bank.

Home Energy Retrofit Opportunities for Seniors (HEROS): The joint-Nevada Govenor's Office of Energy (GOE) and Nevada Division of Housing (NHD) program targets seniors 60 years and older and persons with disabilities for residential energy assessments and upgrades. Funding from GOE augments the current weatherization assistance program administered by the NHD and is provided to the homeowner free of charge. GEO administrators the program through a network of non-profit service provider agencies throughout Nevada.  An energy assessment is conducted at the participating senior's home in order to develop a scope of work. Each home may receive up to $6,000 in energy saving measures.

Direct Energy Assistance Loan (DEAL) ProgramThe Nevada State Legislature approved the Governor’s Office of Energy’s DEAL Program on May 30, 2015. This newly created program provides $1,500,000 in zero-interest loans annually to Nevada state employees to receive energy assessments and upgrades and creates a mechanism for the employee to repay the energy efficient loan through a deduction on their paycheck. Funds generated for these grants originate from the Renewable Energy Fund and distributed to the Governor’s Office of Energy. This fund was created during the 2009 Nevada Legislative session to fund energy projects and programs that offset the cost or use of electricity to retail customers of a public utility in Nevada. 

Last Updated: August 2018

Building Energy Disclosure List All

There is no disclosure policy in place.

Last Updated: August 2018

Public Building Requirements List All

Nevada Revised Statutes 701.215 directs the Director of the Office of Energy to develop a state energy reduction plan requiring state agencies to reduce grid-based energy purchases for state-owned buildings by 20% by 2015. The state is still working toward this target. NRS 341.145 requires the State of Nevada Public Works Division to apply for any available utility rebates when constructing public buildings. All buildings are subject to the newly adopted 2012 IECC building standards that took effect on July 1, 2015.

Nevada Revised Statute 701.218 requires the Director of the Governor’s Office of Energy (GOE) to track use of energy in buildings owned by the State or occupies by a state agency. GOE currently obtains utility bills for each building for every month and preserves these records indefinitely. GOE also collects data and tracks building performance to allow for the comparison of utility bills for a building from month to month and year to year, as well as between similar buildings or types of buildings. GOE collects data that allows for the projection of costs for energy for state-owned buildings. GOE recently executed a contract to install Lucid's BuildingOS benchmarking software to track energy use at 500 state-owned buildings at 15 minute intervals and compare buildings based on multiple criteria to determine efficiency upgrade priorities. The state will train energy and facility managers from September through December 2016, and in 2017, the state will begin to analyze benchmarking results. Approximately 74% of state-owned building square footage will have benchmarking programs in place in the coming months.

Last Updated: August 2018

Fleets List All

While Nevada Revised Statute 486A.010 requires clean vehicle purchasing and alternative vehicle use in certain counties, Nevada does not have a statewide energy-efficient fleet requirement.

Note: For state efficient fleet initiatives, policies listed must make a specific, mandatory requirement for increasing state fleet efficiency. State alternative-fuel vehicle procurement requirements that give a voluntary option to count efficient vehicles are thus not included.

Last Updated: August 2018

Energy Savings Performance Contracting List All

Nevada's ESPC programs were enacted initially in 2003 by Nevada Revised Statutes (NRS) 332 and 333A and have been updated and revised over the years to improve their effectiveness. The statutes require state and local government agencies to follow specific guidelines and practices to ensure ESPC program success, including instructions for completing comprehensive audits, contracting, obtaining professional advice and technical assistance, measurement, oversight, and reporting.  The state Public Works Division periodically prequalifies ESCOs and the Purchasing Division prequalifies ESPC Third Party Consultants. As of 2012, over $180 million in ESPC projects have been completed in the State. Nevada School District Boards are required by NRS 332.362 to establish criteria for evaluating all proposed capital improvement projects for their ESPC potential and to report annually on all ESPC projects successfully completed and potential projects not completed, in accordance with NRS 332.360.

The Nevada Governor's Office of Energy (GOE) website provides education, tools, and outreach assistance to all government entities and private building owners on the subject of performance contracting, including a step-by -step guide, resources, and success stories. Grants are offered through the GOE's Performance Contracting Audit Assistance Program (PCAAP) to offset the cost of industrial grade energy audits for performance contract projects. Through this program, Nevada government entities that choose to enter into a performance contract for operational cost savings measures are eligible to have their Financial-Grade Operational Audit (FOGA) funded by the GOE. Eligible Nevada Government Entities include counties, cities, school districts, state colleges and universities, and state agencies. There are currently 182 public buildings engaging with ESPCs. The state recently issued $500,000 to the Clark County Schools District (CCSD) for their financial grade operational audit. CCSD currently has contracts for work in 50 of 320 schools and plans to target the rest over the next five years. The state also recently granted $100,000 for performance contracting activities to the City of Henderson and is actively promoting this program through the Nevada League of Cities and Municipalities, among other avenues.

Last Updated: August 2018

Research & Development List All

The Center for Energy Research at University of Nevada-Las Vegas engages in both energy efficiency and renewable energy research. Conventional power generation systems, energy conservation devices and systems, and environmental control issues for energy systems are of interest.

Last Updated: August 2018

Score: 3.5 out of 8
Buildings Summary List All

Nevada Revised Statute 701.220 requires the Director of the Governor’s Office of Energy to adopt the most recent version of the IECC. As of July 1, 2015, the 2012 IECC is effective for commercial and residential buildings statewide, however, municipalities then must adopt the code individually. ASHRAE Standard 90.1-2010 is also an acceptable compliance path for commercial buildings in Nevada. The state has completed a comprehensive set of activities to ensure compliance with building energy codes.

Residential Codes List All

On July 1, 2015, the 2012 IECC became mandatory for residential buildings. While the code is not being enforced statewide, a significant number of localities have adopted it. Local jurisdictions are not allowed to adopt less-efficient energy codes.

Last Updated: August 2018

Commercial Code List All

On July 1, 2015, the 2012 IECC became mandatory for commercial buildings, with ASHRAE Standard 90.1-2010 as an acceptable compliance path. While the code is not enforced statewide, a significant number of localities have adopted it. Las Vegas has not adopted commercial energy codes in recent years. Local jurisdictions are not allowed to adopt less-efficient energy codes. 

Last Updated: August 2018

Compliance List All
  • Gap Analysis/Strategic Compliance Plan: A Gap Analysis study was completed in 2011 which looks into the current state of code implementation and offers suggestions to increase compliance. A strategic compliance plan was also completed in 2011, detailing feasible actions the state should take in order to meet 90% compliance with the 2009 IECC by 2017. The state provided support to local jurisdictions under ARRA funding to pilot the BECP developed compliance tools to learn how local jurisdictions will/can use the tools and what time and expense it will cost the local jurisdictions. The Governor's Office of Energy also partnered with BCAP to develop an energy codes collaborative for the state, which first met in April 2012, and has also named seven Code Ambassadors. GOE continues to work with PNNL and contractors to provide training on the Nevada Compliance Implementation and Evaluation (CIE) Guide to building code officials and the building industry.
  • Baseline & Updated Compliance Studies: A survey on energy code compliance rates was conducted in 2010 and revised. The Governor’s Office of Energy (GOE) is a supporting partner of a grant proposal recently submitted to DOE to establish baseline energy code compliance rates and to increase public education and outreach.
  • Utility Involvement: No regulatory guidelines have been established with regard to involving utilities in supporting building energy code compliance.
  • Stakeholder Advisory Group: GOE partnered with BCAP to develop the Nevada Code Collaborative, which first met in April 2012, and has also named seven Code Ambassadors. GOE continues to work with PNNL and contractors to provide training on the Nevada Compliance Implementation and Evaluation (CIE) Guide to building code officials and the building industry. The Southwest Energy Efficiency Project (SWEEP) continues to facilitate the collaborative.
  • Training/Outreach: The Code Collaborative has formed a Training Subcommittee to determine current and future training needs. The GOE continues to work with PNNL and contractors to provide training on the Nevada Compliance Implementation and Evaluation (CIE) Guide to building code officials and the building industry. The GOE has held multiple training sessions on the Residential and Commercial Provisions of the 2012 IECC in both northern and southern Nevada to educate and train contractors, vendors and building code officials. The GOE budgeted $10,000 for trainings. Four training events held over the most recent reporting year.

Last Updated: August 2018

Score: 0.5 out of 4
CHP Summary List All

CHP is considered an eligible resource within the state's energy efficiency resource standard, but the state has not otherwise adopted policies to encourage CHP deployment. No new CHP systems were installed in 2017.

Interconnection StandardsList All

Policy: Nevada Interconnections Standard

Description: In December 2003, the Nevada Public Utilities Commission (PUC) adopted interconnection standards for customers of Nevada Power and Sierra Pacific Power with on-site generation up to 20 megawatts (MW) in capacity. These standards are largely consistent with IEEE 1547 standards, California's interconnection rule (California Rule 21) and the model interconnection agreement developed by the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC). Nevada Power and Sierra Pacific Power have incorporated the standards into their tariffs as Rule 15. These standards apply only to CHP fueled by biogas, biomass, LFG, municipal solid waste, or tire-derived fuel.

Last Updated: July 2017

Encouraging CHP as a ResourceList All

There are currently no state policies designed to acquire energy savings from CHP (like other efficiency resources) or energy generation from CHP (in terms of kWh production) that apply to all forms of CHP. 

Last Updated: July 2017

Deployment IncentivesList All

There are currently no state policies that provide incentives for CHP deployment.

Last Updated: July 2017

Additional Supportive PoliciesList All

Some additional supportive policies exist to encourage CHP in Nevada. Nevada's renewable portfolio standard (RPS) was initiated in 1997 and was expanded to include energy savings from efficiency measures in 2005. It requires the state's two investor-owned utilities, Nevada Power and Sierra Pacific Power, to achieve 25% renewable energy by 2025 and allows energy efficiency to meet a quarter of the standard in any given year. All types of CHP systems are eligible under the RPS as a "qualified energy recovery process." 

Last Updated: July 2017

Score: 4 out of 20
Utilities Summary List All

Nevada's two investor-owned electric utilities, Nevada Power Company and Sierra Pacific Power, administer customer energy efficiency programs that are funded by rate adjustments noted on customer bills. Both utilities are subsidiaries of NV Energy; since 2008, they have done business under the NV Energy brand. Nevada's renewable energy portfolio standard allows energy efficiency to be used in partial fulfillment of its portfolio requirements. Nevada utilities can recover lost revenues that result from successfully conducting energy efficiency programs.

The levels of funding and program services have grown rapidly since Nevada reestablished requirements for energy efficiency programs provided by the state's investor-owned electric utilities, as well as integrated resource planning. These utilities aggressively pursued energy efficiency and grew their portfolio until they achieved saving of 1.5% of sales in 2009. Since then their savings have dropped to half that amount. Nevada’s publicly-owned utilities also provide some energy efficiency programs to their customers.

In June 2017, SB 150 was signed into law directing the PUCN to establish annual energy savings goals for NV Energy and to establish performance-based incentives that an electric utility can recover if it exceeds those goals. 

The most recent budgets for energy efficiency programs and electricity and natural gas savings can be found in the State Spending and Savings Tables.

Customer Energy Efficiency Programs List All

Nevada returned to a traditional regulated utility structure after it restructured its industry in the late 1990s. Nevada’s vertically integrated, investor-owned utilities are required to perform integrated resource planning and related demand-side management programs. The utility companies collect an energy efficiency system benefits charge through customers' electric rates. The companies file general rate cases every three years, and DSM Program Costs and the associated lost revenues are recovered on an annual basis in the Deferred Energy Docket filed every March.

The utility companies administer the energy efficiency programs with oversight by the Public Utilities Commission of Nevada (PUCN). The companies propose a three-year budget and program plan to the PUCN as part of 20-year integrated resource planning requirements. The utility companies must have their program plans and budgets approved by the PUCN prior to implementation. Sierra Pacific Power and Southwest Gas offer natural gas efficiency programs. Investor-owned utilities aggressively pursued energy efficiency and grew program portfolios, achieving a high of 1.5% savings in 2009. Since then, savings have dropped to half that amount.

Nevada’s publicly-owned utilities (cooperatives and municipal utilities) also provide some energy efficiency programs to their customers.

The most recent budgets for energy efficiency programs and electricity and natural gas savings can be found in the State Spending and Savings Tables.

Last Updated: July 2018

Energy Efficiency as a Resource List All

Nevada Administrative Code §704.934 directs each regulated utility to submit a plan for conservation and load management as part of its resource plan. The plan must include, among other things:

  • an assessment of potential savings attributable to technically feasible programs for conservation and load management
  • a list of proposed programs for reducing energy and demand
  • a determination of the reduction in the use of energy and the demand for energy that would result from the proposed programs
  • an assessment of the costs of the proposed programs and the reductions in the utility’s costs produced by the proposed programs, and
  • an assessment of the impact on the utility’s load shapes of proposed and existing programs for conservation and load management.

Last Updated: July 2018

Energy Efficiency Resource Standards List All

Summary: 25% renewable energy by 2025—energy efficiency may currently meet 20% of the standard in any given year, but phases out of the RPS over time.

In 1997, Nevada established a renewable portfolio standard (RPS) as part of its restructuring legislation. Assembly Bill (AB) 3 in 2005 revised the RPS, increasing the portfolio requirement to 20% by 2015 and allowing utilities to use energy efficiency to help meet the requirements. Amendments in Senate Bill 358 in 2009 raised the portfolio requirement to 25% by 2025. Energy efficiency measures qualify if they are subsidized by the electric utility, reduce demand (as opposed to shifting peak demand to off-peak hours), and are implemented or sited at a retail customer’s location after January 1, 2005. AB1 of 2007 expanded the definition of efficiency resources to include district heating systems powered by geothermal hot water. For years 2015 to 2019 not more than 20 percent of the RPS can be met utilizing energy efficiency. This amount drops to 10 percent for calendar years 2020 to 2024 before reducing to zero for 2025.

The Public Utilities Commission of Nevada (PUCN) established a program to allow energy providers to buy and sell portfolio energy credits (PECs) in order to meet energy portfolio requirements. The number of kWh saved by energy efficiency measures is multiplied by 1.05 to determine the number of PECs. For electricity saved during peak periods as a result of efficiency measures, the credit multiplier is increased to 2.0. PECs are valid for a period of four years. The PUCN currently has an open rulemaking regarding the annual savings goals in Docket Nos. 17-07011 and 17-08023.

In 2013, the legislature voted to phase out this energy efficiency allowance in order to effectively increase the requirement for new renewable energy.  

In June 2017, SB 150 was signed into law directing the PUCN to establish annual energy savings goals for NV Energy and to establish performance-based incentives that an electric utility can recover if it exceeds those goals.

Nevada has no natural gas EERS.

Last Updated: July 2018

Utility Business Model List All

In May 2011, the Public Utilities Commission of Nevada (PUCN) issued an order approving the first recovery of lost revenues from demand-side management (DSM) programs for NV Energy, parent company of Nevada Power and Sierra Pacific Power Companies. This was the first filing under new regulations that provide for the recovery of DSM expenses and lost revenues in an annual balancing account. The investigation into an alternative to the lost revenue mechanism was completed in 2015, and in Docket No. 14-10018, a new multiplier method was proposed by the electric utilities. Regulations approving the multiplier methodology have been drafted but have not yet been approved by the Commission.

In 2008, the Commission adopted temporary rules pursuant to a 2007 law allowing gas utilities to propose decoupling their profits from their sales in a general rate case filed within one year of the approval of their energy efficiency programs. The rules specify a revenue-per-customer system for determining utility revenues to recover fixed costs. The PUCN adjusts this revenue on a per-class basis (i.e., “residential”) (PUCN Docket No. 07-06046 and Nevada Admin. Code 704.953). Gas utilities in Nevada can choose to either implement decoupling or use a performance.

In 2009 the Nevada Legislature passed SB 358, which directed the Commission to remove the financial disincentives faced by the utilities, and in 2010, the PUCN approved a Lost Revenue Adjustment Mechanism for electric utilities. The partial decoupling mechanism allowed utilities to recover "lost revenues" based on estimated savings through a third party M&V contractor during annual DSM filings. In 2015, the PUCN completed an investigation into an alternative lost revenue mechanism, and in Docket No. 14-10018, a new multiplier method was proposed by the electric utilities. Regulations approving the multiplier method were adopted in 2016. 

Last Updated: July 2018

Evaluation, Measurement, & Verification List All
  • Cost-effectiveness test(s) used: TRC, UCT, RIM, SCT, PTC, ATRC (TRC is primary)
  • Uses a deemed savings database: no

The evaluation of ratepayer-funded energy efficiency programs in Nevada relies on statute (NRS 704.785(1)) and regulatory orders (NAC 704). The statute states that the Commission shall adopt regulations authorizing an electric utility to recover an amount based on the measurable and verifiable effects of the implementation by the electric utility of energy efficiency and conservation programs approved by the Commission. The Commission has taken this language to mean that M&V is mandated for energy efficiency programs. Evaluations are mainly administered by the utilities and are conducted for each program.

Nevada considers all of the five classic benefit-cost tests identified in the California Standard Practice Manual. These are the Total Resource Cost (TRC), the Utility Cost Test (UCT), the Rate Impact Measure (RIM), Participant Cost Test (PCT) and the Societal Cost Test (SCT). The PUCN requires the electric utilities to provide an adjusted TRC (ATRC). The benefit-cost tests are required for each individual program as well as on the portfolio level. The PUCN requires that each program is cost effective and relies upon the TRC and ATRC for this analysis. Some exceptions exist in the application of benefit-cost tests to low-income programs, pilots, and new technologies.

Last Updated: July 2018

Guidelines for Low-Income Energy Efficiency Programs List All

Requirements for State and Utility Support of Low-Income Energy Efficiency Programs

In July 2001, Nevada passed AB 661, which created the Nevada Fund for Energy Assistance and Conservation (FEAC) through a universal energy charge (UEC) assessed on retail customers of the state’s regulated electric and gas utilities. Nevada’s Energy Assistance Code specifies the UEC is 3.30 mills per therm of natural gas and 0.39 mills per kWh of electricity purchased by these customers.

NRS 702.270 requires that 25% of the money in the FEAC must be distributed to the Nevada Housing Division for programs of energy conservation, weatherization, and energy efficiency for eligible households. The Housing Division may use not more than 6% of the money distributed to it, pursuant to this section, for its administrative expenses.

In June 2017, SB 150 was signed into law, which, in addition to directing the PUCN to establish annual energy savings goals for NV Energy, also requires utilities to set aside 5% of efficiency program budgets for low-income customers.

Cost-Effectiveness Rules for Low-Income Energy Efficiency Programs

No specific adjustments or exceptions to general cost-effectiveness rules are in place for low-income programs.

Coordination of Ratepayer-Funded Low-Income Programs with WAP Services

Level of coordination is unclear from publicly available data.

Last updated: July 2018

Self Direct and Opt-Out Programs List All

There are no self-direct or opt-out provisions in Nevada. 

Last updated: July 2018

Data AccessList All

Guidelines for Third Party Access

Customer energy use data is available to third parties contracted by the utilities solely for program implementation and measurement and verification. 

Requirements for Provision of Energy Use Data

In Nevada there are no requirements for the provision of energy use data. 

Energy Use Data Availability

The state does not have a standardized system through which access to individual or aggregated energy use data may be requested. 

Last Updated: July 2018

Score: 2 out of 10
Transportation Summary List All

Nevada has not focused its efforts on policies to encourage efficient transportation systems, leaving significant room for growth.

Tailpipe Emission Standards List All

No policy in place or proposed.

Last Updated: August 2018

Transportation System Efficiency List All

Transportation and Land use Integration: No policy in place or proposed.

VMT Targets: No policy in place or proposed.

Complete Streets: No policy in place or proposed.

FAST Freight Plans and Goals: Nevada has a state freight plan that identifies a multimodal freight network, but it does not include freight energy or greenhouse gas reduction goals.

Last Updated: August 2018

Transit Funding List All

No policy in place or proposed.

Last Updated: August 2018

Incentives for High-Efficiency Vehicles List All

No policy in place or proposed.

Last Updated: August 2018

Equitable Access to TransportationList All
Nevada does not have any state programs in place to incentivize the creation of low-income housing near transit facilities, but it does consider the proximity of transit facilities when distributing federal Low-Income Housing Tax Credits to qualifying property owners. Last Updated: August 2018
Appliance Standards
Score: 0 out of 2
Appliance Standards Summary List All

Policy: NRS § 701.260

Description: Assembly Bill 178, adopted June 2007 and codified as NRS § 701.260, established efficacy standards (efficiency of light) for general purpose incandescent lamps, effective January 1, 2012. The Nevada standard is exempt from federal preemption because it predates and is stronger than the federal standard. However, the state has not yet begun enforcing the standard and it is uncertain when enforcement will commence.

Last Updated: June 2017