“Looking Out For You”
Your Co-op has long been an advocate of energy conservation. We’re always on the lookout for ways we can help you reduce your energy consumption and in the process put more money in your pocket. It’s in that spirit we’re excited to introduce Energy Innovations.
Energy Innovations is our way of looking out for you by finding new and affordable ways to lower your energy consumption. Lowering ones energy consumption can be done by utilizing conservation and energy efficiency techniques. At first glance both of these would appear to be the same but actually they are quite different.
Conservation involves changing ones behavior to reduce energy use, where energy efficiency reduces energy use without changing behavior. To show what we mean, let’s look at heating your home. As much as half of the energy used in your home goes for heating. Since you are concerned about the rising costs of heating your home; what can you do?
A conservation technique would be to simply turn down your thermostat and put on a sweatshirt (behavior change). Each degree you lower your thermostat saves you about 2% on your heating bill. For those who say I like my house at 72 degrees and don’t want it any cooler or warmer (no behavior change) but still want to reduce their heating and cooling costs, energy efficiency techniques can be used.
Energy efficiency methods such as adding insulation, replacing windows, weather stripping & caulking and furnace upgrades will allow you to reduce your energy consumption and still maintain the temperature you’re used to. Of course, a combination of conservation and energy efficiency is the optimum situation. The goal of Energy Innovations is to provide you with conservation and efficiency solutions that are right for you.
Not all of us are the same and what may work for some, won’t necessarily work for others. The first step in the Energy Innovation process is for us to learn a little about your energy consumption. To assist us in customizing your energy use profile we developed a short questionnaire (.pdf) along with an inventory of household items (.pdf). We can use this information to offer both conservation and energy efficiency suggestions so please take a few minutes to complete these forms.
The second leg of Energy Innovations is a program we’re real excited about called Capital Credits for Conservation. When we talk to members about energy efficiency upgrades the biggest obstacle facing them is the initial cost. As a member of Central Wisconsin Electric Co-op you share in any excess margins (revenues – expenses) the Co-op has in a particular year. The surplus margins are allocated to members of the Cooperative in the form of Capital Credits and then, depending on the financial position of the Co-op, the board of directors approves returning a portion back to the members. Capital Credits for Conservation will allow you to “cash in” your accumulated Capital Credits on a discounted basis to pay for energy efficiency upgrades such as insulation, new windows, solar or heat pump water heaters, geothermal heat pumps and electric thermal storage heating systems. There is no cost share requirement, so depending on how much you have available and factoring in tax credits and rebates your cash outlay can be very minimal. As a member of Central Wisconsin Electric Cooperative, YOU get the credit. Thank you for being a member! How Do Capital Credits Work.
To find out how much you might be eligible to receive please give us a call!
This is just the beginning as we’ll continue to explore other avenues to help you lower your energy consumption.
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