Save Energy


“She works hard for the money.” That famous lyric never resonates more than when it’s time to pay that dreaded, ever-increasing hydro bill. It’s a hefty but, alas, necessary expense without which there’d be no nights on the couch watching your favourite Netflix program. Thankfully, there is some good news on the horizon as we can now look forward to an eight per cent rebate on hydro bills (equivalent to the provincial portion of the 13 per cent HST), as recently announced by Premier Kathleen Wynne. Sadly, the savings don’t come into effect until January 2017. Until then, though, here are some useful tips, courtesy of Toronto Hydro and Hydro One to help keep costs down and save some money.  1. A programmable thermostat that lowers the temperature when you’re at work or sleeping makes sense when you consider that for every degree the thermostat is lowered, you’ll save up to three per cent on heating costs. And when you do feel chilly? Try putting on a sweater before cranking it up. 2. During the day, keep curtains open to take advantage of solar heat.  3. Up to 25 per cent of heat loss is through windows. Covering them with plastic wrap can help reduce that loss. Further reduce air leakage, which can also account for as much as 25 per cent of heating costs, by caulking and weather-stripping windows, doors, dryer vents and installing insulated plates on electrical outlets. 4. Using cold water for laundry can significantly reduce energy costs. Even rinsing in cold water can save enough energy for about 100 hot baths per year (based on three loads per week). 5. Whatever the season, use major appliances during off-peak hours, which are 7pm to 7am weekdays, all day weekends and statutory holidays.  6. Try using an energy-saving slow-cooker or electric skillet instead of the oven as often as possible. Both are perfect for cooking comfort foods. 7. If you have a fireplace that you never use, consider getting it sealed since warm air escapes if the damper is open. If you do enjoy sitting by the fire, make sure you turn down your main thermostat. 8. Clean the furnace filter regularly to extend its lifespan and reduce energy consumption. Set the fan switch on “auto” instead of “on”.  Need more help? Wondering if it’s time to replace your furnace or how to spend less on electricity and other forms of energy? Check out these helpful video guides from Hydro One by visiting hydroone.com/MyHome/SaveEnergy. saveenergy –...

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Local charities have begun enrolling low-income residents in the government’s annual Energy Assistance Program and in NIPSCO’s utility aid programs. The Energy Assistance Program is a one-time credit for the season. To qualify, residents’ income must be 150 percent of the federal poverty level or less, which is $ 17,820 if just one person is in the home, $ 30,240 for three people and $ 42,660 for five. If accepted, clients who receive this aid, cannot have their utilities shut off between Dec. 1 and March 15. The aid varies by household. If accepted, and if they are NIPSCO customers, they are automatically enrolled in the company’s CARE program (Customer Assistance for Residential Energy) for discounted bills. NIPSCO also offers a Hardship Program, with up to $ 400 in assistance, for customers whose incomes are just outside of the guidelines, up to 200 percent of the federal poverty level, or a maximum of $ 40,320 for a household of three or $ 56,880 for a household of five. Customers can talk with NIPSCO representatives about that aid from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Central time Monday through Friday at 800-464-7726. To apply for the Energy Assistance Program, you’ll need to first set an appointment with the nonprofit REAL Services at the following numbers: • St Joseph County: REAL Services at 574-232-6501 or 800-225-3367 • Elkhart County: 574-875-1875 (in Elkhart) or 574-534-2564 (The Salvation Army in Goshen) • Fulton County: 574-223-7649 • Kosciusko County: 574-267-2699 • Marshall County: 574-935-0132. Indiana Michigan Power doesn’t provide direct aid for its electric customers. But, like other utility providers, it does work with customers on monthly payment plans. And it can refer customers to agencies that can offer help with paying utility bills. Call 800-311-4634. For a listing of rebates and discount programs, visit www.electricideas.com. saveenergy –...

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ERP Power LLC (ERP), a leading provider of small, smart and efficient LED drivers for the lighting industry, is honored to be recognized as the “Growth Company of the Year” by the Association for Corporate Growth (ACG). ERP and Angeles Equity Partners founders will attend the “Stars of the 101” awards banquet on Thursday, 3 November 2016 in Westlake Village, California. “ERP’s LED power electronics expertise and innovation continues to fuel our growth,” said Michael Archer, CEO of ERP Power. “LED lighting reduces utility costs, improves safety, creates ambiance, and enables interactive experiences wherever there are people. It’s exciting to be literally powering the change to LED lighting across all types of businesses.” “As the leading voice for business growth in the 101 Corridor, ACG 101 understands the important contributions the area’s business leaders, entrepreneurs and professionals make to our community, as well as the significant challenges they face in a complex, fast-changing business environment,” said Jeff Tillman, ACG 101 Chapter President and Business Development Director at Crowe Horwath LLP. “We are delighted to honor these innovative firms and the men and women who lead them at our annual Stars of the 101 Banquet.” “We’re proud ACG has recognized ERP’s creativity and business savvy as they continue to outpace the competition,” said Timothy Meyer, co-founder and managing partner of Angeles Equity Partners. “We see ERP as a compelling high growth platform to drive industry consolidation.” About ERP Established in 2004, ERP designs and manufactures small, smart and efficient LED driver power electronics for architectural, commercial and industrial lighting applications. Powerful ERP products deliver an industry-leading combination of compact size, extensive dimmer compatibility, wireless controls, programmable output, and high efficiency at competitive cost. Headquartered in Moorpark, CA, ERP owns and operates its own ISO 9001 certified manufacturing facility to ensure quality of design, sourcing, production and testing. Learn more online at www.erppowerllc.com or by emailing SaveEnergy@erppowerllc.com. About Angeles Equity Partners, LLC Angeles Equity Partners is a private equity firm that invests in companies across a wide range of industrial sectors and specifically targets businesses which it believes can directly benefit from the firm’s deep expertise in operational transformation and strategic repositioning. This skill set drives the firm’s investment philosophy and, in its view, can help underperforming businesses reach their full potential. Learn more online at www.angelesequity.com. About ACG 101 Corridor Chapter ACG 101 (www.ACG101.org) serves the San Fernando Valley, Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties. It is one of 56 chapters around the world that form the international ACG organization, which focuses on corporate growth, corporate development, and mergers and acquisitions. With some 100 members, ACG 101 holds monthly networking and...

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Each year, NIPSCO provides a forecast for home heating bills to help customers plan for the upcoming winter heating season. Based on current market projections and assuming normal winter weather, bills for natural gas residential customers are estimated to be higher compared to last year during the same time. Over the course of the upcoming five-month winter heating season — Nov. 1 to March 31 — NIPSCO’s average residential customers using a total of 626 therms could expect to pay approximately $ 399. This compares to about $ 321 last winter, which was the second lowest in 10 years. For the five total months, that translates to $ 78 more this winter — or approximately $ 15 more per month. While this winter’s bills are projected to be higher than last winter by comparison, they are approximately $ 100 less than two winters ago and still among the lowest in the last decade. NIPSCO Winter Bill Projections Additionally, NIPSCO continues to be among the lowest natural gas cost providers in Indiana according to the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission (IURC), Residential Natural Gas Bill Surveys. “Providing affordable energy for customers is important, especially during the winter months when they’re using more to heat their homes,” said Violet Sistovaris, executive vice president for NIPSCO. “Although market prices have gone up over last year, they remain low overall, and natural gas continues to be one of the most cost-effective, reliable and abundant sources of energy.” The projections take into account market forecasts, supply trends and storage levels, and are based on normal weather projections. If temperatures are colder or warmer than normal, usage amounts and bills could differ from what is projected. The higher bills this winter are due to higher natural gas costs, as well as investments made by NIPSCO to modernize the natural gas infrastructure, which continue to improve safety and reliability for customers. To help ensure customers receive the best price for natural gas, NIPSCO purchases gas in the market from a variety of supply sources at different times throughout the year, and uses gas storage also to help offset market price volatility. NIPSCO’s gas distribution system consists of two on-system storage facilities and connects to seven interstate pipelines providing access to major North American supply basins. The cost of natural gas represents a major component of customer bills. NIPSCO has no mark-up and makes no profit on the cost of natural gas billed to its customers. Before billing, natural gas commodity costs must be reviewed and approved by the IURC. Billing and Payment Options Customers who are experiencing financial difficulties are encouraged to call NIPSCO’s 24-hour Customer Care...

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New ERP LED Drivers Address Higher Power Outdoor Applications with Intelligent Controls, Wireless Mesh Connectivity and Programmable Outputs to Save Energy, Time and Money MOORPARK, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–October 18, 2016– ERP Power LLC (ERP), a leading provider of small, smart and efficient LED drivers for the lighting industry, today announced the next generation of drivers for outdoor LED lighting fixtures will be demonstrated October 27-30, 2016 at the Hong Kong International Lighting Fair. The ERP next generation LED driver design is one-fifth smaller than similar capacity drivers in the industry; programmable for flexible deployment in a broad range of constant current or constant voltage applications; intelligent with wired and wireless controls; and high efficiency to reduce electricity consumption. The new ERP drivers are targeted for deployment in area, floodlight, parking garage, roadway, tunnel and other outdoor lighting fixtures. In a typical street lighting application, a single ERP driver can replace market alternatives that require two drivers. The ERP single-driver approach requires up to 60% less space at less than one half the cost. “ERP is helping accelerate what’s happening in power control and affordable management for street lights, outdoor lighting, industrial and commercial complexes,” said Michael Archer, CEO of ERP Power. “LED drivers are the natural place to embed intelligence for lighting controls as they are able to communicate fixture status, measure power consumption, optimize energy savings and ensure ambiance. Beyond lighting- ERP drivers can also integrate with a variety of sensors-acting as a backbone for access to Internet of Things (IoT) applications. We call it the Internet of Lights.” Programmable Output Customers can deploy a single driver across multiple lighting fixtures if the power output is programmable. This lowers inventory costs in the customer’s supply chain. The ERP next generation driver output is high efficiency and fully programmable from 150-260W in a wide range of output currents and voltages while maintaining efficiency of 94% from 50-100% of load, with power factor greater than 0.9 and THD less than 20%. Programmable currents range from 430 to 1700 mA and programmable voltages range from 100 to 400 Vdc. A configurable auxiliary constant voltage output provides 24V/12V/5V/3.3V up to 500 mA to power an external motion or occupancy sensor. Wireless Controls It is estimated that over 30% of lighting energy consumption is wasted when spaces and rooms are not in use. The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that if the United States reduced energy use in buildings by 20 percent, the nation could save nearly $ 80 billion annually on energy bills. LED luminaire manufacturers looking to comply with regulations like Energy Star 2.0 and California Title 24 can use ERP wireless...

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Higher heating costs predicted


Posted By on Oct 16, 2016

NIPSCO winter bills 2016-17 (projected) 2015-16 Nov.: $ 44 $ 39 Dec.: $ 73 $ 62 Jan.: $ 101 $ 81 Feb.: $ 100 $ 81 March: $ 81 $ 58 Total: $ 399 $ 321 Prices for natural gas will be going up this winter, with the average customer paying about $ 78 more over the winter heating season, which runs from Nov. 1 to March 31, NIPSCO announced Thursday. The increase comes to about $ 15 more per month, the company said, but it is it is still the second lowest price in the last 10 years. While this winter’s bills are expected to be higher, they will still be about $ 100 lower than two years ago, the company said. The higher bills are the result of higher natural gas costs and investments made by NIPSCO to modernize its infrastructure and improve safety and reliability, the company said. The price projections take into account market forecasts, supply trends and storage levels and are based on a normal winter. If the winter is colder or warmer than normal, bills could differ from the company’s projections. The company projects that the average bill will be $ 44 for November, $ 73 for December, $ 101 for January, $ 100 for February and $ 81 for March. NIPSCO serves 821,000 natural gas customers in Indiana. fgray@jg.net For programs and tips go to NIPSCO.com/SaveEnergy. saveenergy –...

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