Just a few short years ago, compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) were the “hottest” efficient technology and utilities were building entire programs around encouraging customers to swap out their old incandescent lights. Then the price of the even more efficient LED, or light-emitting diode, lamps started to drop and customers had another option. They also had a case of technology whiplash that left many feeling more than a little skeptical about manufacturer claims. If you would like some help in persuading your customers about the benefits of state-of-the-art lighting technology, check out this lighting fact sheet from Lincoln County Power District No. 1.
The fact sheet promotes LCPD’s lighting program that offers each residential customer one 10-watt LED lamp to try out at home for a year. The 10-watt LED gives off light that is equivalent to a 60-watt incandescent bulb or a 14-watt CFL. Installing an LED in the most used light fixture in the house could save consumers nearly 55 kilowatt-hours annually.
Some of the information on the fact sheet is specific to LCPD customers, of course, but much of it is general or can easily be adapted to your utility. For example, if you simply change the price of electricity on the cost comparison table, it will show your customers how much money LEDs can save them in their own homes.
The fact sheet explains how to use LEDs (hint: just like incandescents and CFLs) and gives tips on getting the most benefits from the efficient lighting technology. You don’t need to be offering a program similar to LCPD’s lighting program to find this fact sheet useful, but your customers may ask for one when they learn about the advantages of LEDs.
Visit Energy Services Publications to find more fact sheets on technologies and programs to improve load management and customer relations.
Compared to programs targeted at other sectors, industrial efficiency programs offer significant energy-saving opportunities at a relatively low cost, yet many large energy users have barely tapped their industrial energy efficiency potential. To help communicate the value of commercial and industrial (C&I) energy efficiency, the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy has released four new fact sheets examining different aspects of industrial efficiency programs.
According to a white paper by the State and Local Energy Efficiency Action Network (SEE Action), on a national level, the industrial sector saves more energy per program dollar than do other customer classes. Industrial programs can help states comply with the Clean Power Plan, while improving productivity and competitiveness for manufacturers and keeping energy costs low for all customers.
First, however, your board and large account representatives must fully understand the benefits of C&I programs and be prepared to make the business case for them to your customers. Start by sharing these fact sheets with your staff:
- Industrial Efficiency Programs Can Achieve Large Energy Savings at Low Cost cites statistics from programs across the country supporting the cost-effectiveness of implementing industrial efficiency measures. Because industrial customers often represent the majority of a utility’s energy demand, building strong relationships with a few of the largest energy users is an effective use of program resources. You will also find tips from SEE Action for designing effective offerings.
- The Dollars and Cents of Industrial Efficiency Program Investment explains how combining industrial customer investments in energy efficiency combine with utility infrastructure investments to yield deep energy savings with medium-term paybacks. Industrial customers can often be persuaded to make investments with longer payback periods when utility programs address capital planning processes and financial hurdles. A list of the broader benefits of energy efficiency to the business, the utility and the community could help to sell the partnering strategy to your board.
All 50 states have mandated a ratepayer-funded energy-efficiency program that counts efficiency as a resource and provides a mechanism for funding customer projects that reduce energy use. However, some of these laws allow businesses to opt out of funding and participating in the programs, or that allow customers to control some or all of their efficiency fees. These fact sheets clarify these exemptions and discuss the often- misunderstood implications of such policies:
- Overview of Large-Customer Self-Direct Options for Energy Efficiency Programs outlines the status of self-direct programs and opt-out provisions by state, and includes tips for designing successful self-direct programs. If the biggest energy consumers do not participate in a program designed to spread the cost of efficiency across all customer sectors, all customers miss out on the the benefits of efficiency. Alternatively, the self-direct option gives C&I customers the flexibility to design programs that meet their business needs while ensuring measurable and verifiable energy savings. The fact sheet also identifies key elements in successful self-direct provisions.
- Myths and Facts about Industrial Opt-Out Provisions busts commonly held misconceptions that lead policy makers to include opt-out provisions in energy-efficiency programs. This fact sheet may be particularly useful where lawmakers and big energy users are pushing to add opt-out provisions to an effective existing program.
Links to all four of these fact sheets can be found in Energy Services publications, along with other resources on technology and programs.