October 5 is Energy Efficiency Day (#EEDay2017), a collaborative effort between regional and national organizations, businesses, utilities, and individuals working to promote energy efficiency, which is the cheapest, quickest way to meet our energy needs, cut consumer bills, and reduce pollution. The message is simple: “Save energy. Save money.”
Through the means of energy efficiency, we can both use and waste less energy as well as maximize the productivity of each unit of energy we consume. Energy efficiency offers many important benefits, such as:
- The opportunity to defer or eliminate the need to build new electric power generating and transmitting facilities and capacity, which keeps electricity rates lower;
- The opportunity to reduce electricity bills for utility customers who participate in energy efficiency programs and rebates AND lower rates for all customers;
- The opportunity to address electric grid constraints, and enhance grid reliability, especially during peak hours;
- Reduced environmental impact;
- Local job creation and economic growth (According to the U.S. Department of Energy’s 2017 U.S. Energy and Jobs report, more than 50,000 Tennesseans are currently employed by the energy efficiency industry);
- Improved health, comfort, and productivity for all citizens.
On this year’s Energy Efficiency Day, TDEC’s Office of Energy Programs invites you to participate and find out more about the energy efficiency measures that benefit Tennessee.
The goals for Energy Efficiency Day are to raise awareness of energy issues, educate individuals and businesses on how to reduce energy costs, and unite people who are passionate about cutting energy waste and conserving resources. Here are three ways you and your organization can spread the word about the benefits of energy efficiency:
- Visit the new Energy Efficiency Day website and sign up. You can sign up as an individual or as an organization. By signing up, you will receive information and ideas on how to save energy, including fun facts to share on social media.
- Take the Lightbulb Challenge or the Office Lighting Challenge. By taking the challenge, you agree to replace at least one light bulb with an LED. If each US household purchases just one LED bulb, consumers could save $500 million annually.
- Create and share your own energy efficiency content online. You can share the news about Energy Efficiency Day and the benefits of saving energy—and money!—through blog posts, emails, newsletters, and social media. Tell your own energy efficiency success story with videos, photos, graphics, or other content. Or share this blog post! When you sign up on the EE Day website, you will receive additional material that you can use.
Want to know more about what you can do to enhance your energy savings? There are a variety of financing opportunities and incentive programs within Tennessee that encourage energy efficiency within the State. The Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) offers its EnergyRight Solutions program to both residential customers as well as to commercial and industrial customers. When qualifying customers make an investment in energy upgrades through the EnergyRight Solutions program, they may be eligible for an incentive payment to offset some of the costs.
Similarly, the Pathway Lending Energy Efficiency Loan Program provides below-market loans for energy efficiency and renewable energy improvements to Tennessee businesses, non-profit entities, and local governmental entities. All costs related to the efficiency measures may be financed, including assessments, design, equipment, and installation.
Qualified Energy Conservation Bonds may also be used by local governments to invest in energy efficiency projects within their jurisdictions. Examples of qualified projects include energy efficiency capital expenditures in public buildings, efficiency/energy reduction measures for mass transit, or even energy efficiency education campaigns.
Join the growing network of efficiency advocates by sharing the news about Energy Efficiency Day and the benefits of saving energy today!