The state finished second in the scorecard compiled by the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy, a Washington, D.C.-based group that pushes energy efficiency efforts around the country.
Massachusetts topped the council's efficiency list for the third year in a row.
"We have a healthy competition going and that's a good thing," Andrew McAllister, a member of the California Energy Commission, said of the Bay State during a conference call.
McAllister attributed California's high ranking to its standards on home appliances and new construction, utility rebate programs that encourage people to turn in inefficient appliances, and the increasing number of zero-emission and electric vehicles.
"The future energy grid is really upon us in California," McAllister said.
PHOTO: This two-story home in Folsom, shown here in January 2009, won top honors from green building and energy efficiency, a designation as LEED Platinum from the US. Green Building Council. The Sacramento Bee/Anne Chadwick Williams.