The electric power industry’s record on energy efficiency demonstrates its commitment to—and expertise in—helping all of its customers use energy more wisely. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, electric company energy efficiency programs saved 124.6 billion kilowatt-hours of electricity in 2012—or enough to power nearly 11.5 million average U.S. homes for one year.
Electric companies offer a variety of programs and incentives to improve energy efficiency and reduce energy use. Examples of company programs and services include:
- Energy-efficiency rebates to make high-efficiency appliances (including lighting, air conditioning, and refrigeration) more affordable.
- Low-interest loans for financing the purchase of high-efficiency equipment.
- Online energy audits to analyze a home's energy use and offer recommended adjustments.
- Home construction programs to encourage builders to use energy-saving designs and specify high-efficiency appliances and equipment in new homes.
- Demand response programs to encourage customers to reduce their electricity use during peak periods.
Efficiency and Demand Response Programs
Help for Low-Income Customers
Low-Income Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)
Low-income customers are the most vulnerable to fluctuating energy prices, and often must choose between paying their energy bills or buying other necessities, such as food and medicine. LIHEAP is a federal program that delivers critical short-term aid to our nation's most vulnerable citizens, including seniors on fixed incomes and the desperately poor. Increased funding for LIHEAP is the most immediate way to guarantee those in need will have energy assistance.
In addition, utility companies have created programs to help low-income customers, including billing assistance, weatherization help, community development and outreach, and more. Many of these companies also establish fuel funds to help those in need with their utility bills, weatherization repairs, and other programs, at a cost of more than $1 billion annually.