State and Local Policy Database

West Virginia

State Scorecard Rank


West Virginia

5.5Scored out of 50Updated 12/2020
State Government
Score: 1.5 out of 6
State Government Summary List All

The state does not offer financial incentives for energy efficiency, nor does it promote energy efficiency in public facilities. Research focused on efficient vehicles is conducted at the West Virginia University Energy Institute.

Financial Incentives List All

Currently, there are no solely state-administered financial incentive programs.

Financial incentive information for West Virginia is provided by the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (DSIRE West Virginia).

Last Updated: July 2018

Equity Metrics and Workforce DevelopmentList All

The state's energy plans or electrification strategies do not currently establish specific policies or equity-related metrics to ensure access for underserved customers, nor do they include specific measures to prioritize clean energy workforce development.

Last Updated: September 2020

Carbon Pricing PoliciesList All

The State of West Virginia does not yet have carbon pricing policies in place.

At this time, neither the state nor the utilities track avoided GHG emissions through energy efficiency programs, and the utilities do not currently include emissions reductions within benefit-cost testing calculations.

Last Updated: July 2020

Building Energy Disclosure List All

There is no disclosure policy in place.

Last Reviewed: July 2019

Public Building Requirements List All

In March 2012, West Virginia enacted the Green Buildings Act, which applies to all new construction of public buildings, building receiving state grant funds, and buildings receiving state appropriations. For those buildings that have not entered the designed phase prior to July 1, 2012, buildings must be designed and constructed to comply with the ICC International Energy Conservation Code and ASHRAE 90.1-2007. If a building is also receiving federal funds, the ICC and ASHRAE standards only apply if they are consistent with federal standards. 

Benchmarking of state facilities is not required. However, the West Virginia Division of Energy (WVDOE) promotes benchmarking in West Virginia public facilities through several programs. The WVOE received a USDOE Competitive SEP Award to begin an initiative to benchmark energy performance of state owned buildings, beginning with K-12 schools. To date, 40% of school buildings have been benchmarked, and 13 schools have been Energy Star certified.

In February 2020, the WV State Legislature passed a study resolution to quantify utility costs to the state and to determine how state agencies can better manage the amount of state taxpayer dollars spent on utilities and to document deferred maintenance needs.

Last Updated: July 2020

Fleets List All

The W.Va. Purchasing Division includes an alternative fueling mechanism for every vehicle classification. Vendors are also required to provide the federal mpg for each vehicle classification, which is given bid award consideration.

Last Updated: July 2020

Energy Savings Performance Contracting List All

West Virginia state code (§18-5-9a and §5A-3B-2) authorizes county boards of education and state agencies to enter into energy-savings contracts. During the March 2011 legislative session, legislation was enacted to allow energy saving contracts by county boards of education to extend up to 15 years. Energy savings contracts are subject to competitive bidding requirements. For state agencies, state code mandates that “An energy-savings contract is subject to competitive bidding requirements.

Last Reviewed: July 2020

Research & Development List All

The West Virginia University Energy Institute works to achieve energy independence and to transition to more sustainable energy forms. Research projects focus on carbon capture and geologic storage, high-efficiency engines and vehicle technologies, fuel production, clean power generation and distribution, utilization of coal for clean fuels and chemicals, biomass conversion and utilization, and sustainable use of water in energy production. AEI currently has 15 staff in their Sustainable Energy program, which houses the Initiative’s energy efficiency research. 

Last Reviewed: July 2019

Important Links List All
Score: 4 out of 9
Buildings Summary List All

Residential buildings must comply with the 2009 IECC, while commercial buildings must meet ASHRAE 90.1-2010 standards due to a code update in 2019. These codes are mandatory, but adoption by jurisdictions is voluntary. West Virginia has convened a stakeholder advisory group and offers code training and outreach.

Residential Codes List All

West Virginia's residential building code is mandatory statewide; however, adoption by jurisdictions is voluntary. The 2013 West Virginia Legislature passed a bill updating the state’s building energy code to follow the 2009 IECC for residential buildings. The new residential code became effective November 30, 2013.

Last Reviewed: September 2020

Commercial Code List All

West Virginia's commercial building code is mandatory statewide; however, adoption by jurisdictions is voluntary. The state now follows ASHRAE 90.1-2010. In February 2019, the Governor signed SB177 authorizing the legislative rule filed by the Fire Commission on July 25, 2018 to amend the State Building Code to update the ANSI/ASHRAE/IESNA Standard 90.1 from the 2007 edition to the 2010 edition.

Last Reviewed: September 2020

Compliance List All
  • Gap Analysis/Strategic Compliance Plan: West Virginia's compliance plan was published in 2011 and is available on BCAP's website. 
  • Baseline & Updated Compliance Studies: The Appalachian Residential Consortium for Energy Efficiency (ARCEE) is currently conducting a field study measuring residential energy code compliance rates in the state. More information is available here.
  • Utility Involvement: NA
  • Stakeholder Advisory Group: The W.Va. Fire Commission Legislative, Code and Regulatory Committee includes representatives from the state’s residential construction industry, code officials, home inspectors and the state energy office. Legislative changes during the 2020 session will more formally establish stakeholder groups and three-member independent dispute resolution panels with certified subject matter experts who will in essence offer a mediator role as a voluntary step before moving complaints in the trades to the W.Va. Fire Commission.
  • Training/Outreach: Using State Energy Program funds, the WV Office of Energy is working with the Homebuilders Association of West Virginia Foundation and Energy Efficient West Virginia to provide training on the 2009 IECC and beyond. 

Last Reviewed: September 2020

CHP Summary List All

CHP systems are eligible for net metering in West Virginia, but the state has not otherwise adopted policies to encourage CHP. No new CHP systems were installed in 2018.

Interconnection StandardsList All

Policy: West Virginia Interconnection Standard

Description: In 2010 the West Virginia Public Service Commission established an order that developed a new interconnection standard. This standard features two tiers of application, up to 2MW in size. CHP is an eligible technology.

Last Updated: July 2018

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 2018

Deployment IncentivesList All

Net metering:  West Virginia’s net metering rules were expanded and improved in 2010. Today there is a system cap of 2MW, and systems over 500kW must carry at least $1,000,000 in liability insurance.  Systems that generate electricity using "alternative" or "renewable energy" resources are eligible for net metering, including combined heat and power (technically called "recycled energy" in the rules).

Last Updated: July 2018

Additional Supportive PoliciesList All

There are currently no additional supportive policies to encourage CHP. In January 2015, West Virginia legislators voted to repeal the states Alternative and Renewable Energy Portfolio Standard, which once required utilities to obtain 25% of their retail electric sales from eligible alternative and renewable energy resources by 2025. CHP was an eligible technology before the repeal bill, H.B. 2001, eliminated the standard.

Last Updated: July 2018

Score: -1 out of 20
Utilities Summary List All

West Virginia utilities implement some small-scale customer energy efficiency programs. West Virginia's state legislature proposed an Energy Efficiency Resource Standard in 2011 (see HB 2210), but the bill failed to make it through the House Judiciary Committee. 

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

Case 09-0177 ordered Appalachian Power to submit an energy efficiency plan with its 2010 rate case. The final order was issued in 2010. It directed power companies to implement approved programs, which included: low-income weatherization, residential home audit, residential lighting, and commercial/industrial prescriptive incentives. In 2012, several other utilities followed suit, as Monongahela Power and Potomac Edison began offering limited programs. Currently Appalachian Power offers seven residential and two C&I programs in 2019.  See WV Case 17-0401.

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 reviewed: July 2019

Energy Efficiency as a Resource List All

There is currently no comprehensive policy in place that treats energy efficiency as a resource. In 2011, the Public Service Commission (PSC) approved Appalachian Power Company’s petition to submit energy efficiency and demand-response programs for credits toward the state’s Alternative and Renewable Energy Portfolio Standard in Case No. 11-1034-E-P.

For more information on energy efficiency as a resource, click here.

Last reviewed: July 2019

Energy Efficiency Resource Standards List All

There is currently no EERS in place.

For more information on Energy Efficiency Resource Standards, click here.

Last reviewed: July 2019

Utility Business Model List All

In Case 14-0345 (2014), if Appalachian Power expends funds of their own on EE/DR activities, such funds shall be treated as an investment and deferred as a regulatory asset.  Appalachian Power is allowed to earn a return on such investment at the weighted average cost of capital ("WACC") plus fifty (50) basis points. There is currently no method for utilities to earn a higher rate of return based on performance of EE/DR programs.

Last Updated: February 2021

Evaluation, Measurement, & Verification List All

Appalachian Power is required to have a third-party program evaluator. All energy efficiency programs have process and impact evaluations. Gross and net savings are reported for each program. 

Last Updated: January 2019

Guidelines for Low-Income Energy Efficiency Programs List All

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

No specific required spending or savings requirements were identified.

Cost-Effectiveness Rules for Low-Income Energy Efficiency Programs

Cost Effectiveness tests are not currently applied to low income Programs.  WV Case 19-0396 is currently pending.

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

WV WAP operates the Energy Crisis Intervention Program (ECIP) which provides emergency heat repair and replacement, and works with utility companies throughout the state to provide services to reduce consumers’ energy burden..

Last reviewed: July 2019

Self Direct and Opt-Out Programs List All

Opt out is developed individually by utilities. Customers with demand of 1 MW or greater may opt out. Participants must document that they have achieved similar/equivalent savings on their own in order to retain opt-out status. Claims of energy and/or demand reduction are certified to utilities with future evaluation by the Commission to take place in a later proceeding. The method has not been specified. Approximately 20 large customers have opted out.

Last Updated: October 2018

Data AccessList All

West Virginia has no policy in place that requires utilities to release energy use data to customers or third parties. 

Last Updated: October 2018

Score: 1 out of 12
Transportation Summary List All

In 2013, the state passed transit legislation establishing a fund to pay track access fees accrued by commuter rail services. West Virginia has also passed complete streets legislation.

Tailpipe Emission Standards List All

No policy in place or proposed.

Last Reviewed: July 2019

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: On April 10, 2013, West Virginia Legislature passed Senate Bill No. 158, the Complete Streets Act. This policy promotes the consideration of all forms of transportation when designing roads and highways in West Virginia.  

FAST Freight Plans and Goals: No finalized freight plan or goals in place. 

Last Reviewed: July 2019

Transit Funding List All

On April 13, 2013, West Virginia Legislature passed Senate Bill No. 103. This bill is known as the WV Commuter Rail Access Act. It establishes a special fund in the State Treasury to pay track access fees accrued by commuter rail services operating within West Virginia borders. The funds have the ability to rollover from year-to-year and are administered by the West Virginia State Rail Authority.

Last Reviewed: July 2019

Incentives for High-Efficiency Vehicles List All

No policy in place or proposed.

Last Reviewed: July 2019

Equitable Access to TransportationList All

West Virginia does not have any state programs in place to incentivize the creation of low-income housing near transit facilities, nor does it consider the proximity of transit facilities when distributing federal Low-Income Housing Tax Credits to qualifying property owners.

Last Reviewed: July 2019

Appliance Standards
Score: 0 out of 3
Appliance Standards Summary List All

West Virginia has not set appliance standards beyond those required by the federal government.

Last Reviewed: June 2019