The Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance (NEEA) has said that 13 regional energy organizations have pledged to renew their investment in NEEA with $192m for the 2010-2014 period.

NEEA’s funding backs a plan to save the region 200 average megawatts (aMW) of power by 2014 at a projected cost of under 3.5 cents per kilowatt hour, enough energy to power 138,000 homes for a year, and at a cost less than any other type of generation source.

NEEA’s funding organizations are based in Idaho, Montana, Oregon and Washington and represent about 130 regional public utilities on behalf of Northwest energy consumers.

Cathy Zoi, assistant secretary of US Department of Energy, said: “Investments in energy efficiency are helping to lay the groundwork for a new energy future for America. By continuing to promote energy-efficient technologies, the Northwest is helping to reduce our dependence on foreign oil, while creating green jobs and driving our economy forward.”

Working through NEEA, the region has already saved a substantial amount of energy. From 1997 through 2008, the Northwest achieved 264aMW of energy savings through its regional efforts, which is enough energy to power the cities of Spokane and Tacoma, Washington or 182,000 homes each year. These energy savings were achieved at a cost of about two cents per kilowatt-hour, NEEA said.

Including the investment in NEEA, the region as a whole is expected to spend roughly $2bn on new energy efficiency programs by 2014.

Claire Fulenwider, executive director of NEEA, said: “We will use our increased funding to deepen market transformation for energy efficiency, create green jobs, directly support the region’s Sixth Power Plan and strengthen the Northwest economy by helping to secure low power rates for energy consumers for the long term.”

NEEA’s five-year business plan outlines how it will work to increase the market adoption of energy-efficient products and services through collaboration, and to increase the availability of new energy-efficient technologies.

In addition, NEEA’s work will focus on improving both knowledge and capabilities in the market through education and training. Its efforts will help its utility funders and states meet their own energy efficiency goals.