Tampa Electric seeks to expand energy-efficiency programs and incentives

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The company’s proposal to the Florida Public Service Commission includes increased use of renewable technologies to help Tampa Electric meet its demand-side management goals for 2010-2019.

Tampa Electric yesterday filed for approval from the Florida Public Service Commission to expand its current lineup of energy-efficiency programs for customers. In addition to the new proposed programs and enhancements to existing programs, $1.5 million in incentives will be offered by Tampa Electric each year for five years to help customers install renewable technologies such as photovoltaic (PV) solar systems and solar water heating. Those measures include:

  • Residential Solar Water Heating – provides customer rebates up to $1,000 for installing new solar hot water heating systems.
  • Solar PV Systems – provides rebates to customers who install PV systems at their homes or businesses.
  • PV for Schools – Tampa Electric will install five 10-kilowatt systems with battery backup at schools that also can function as emergency shelters. The PV technology will provide educational opportunities to teachers and students.
  • Low Income Solar Water Heating – Solar water heating systems will be available for installation on new construction in collaboration with nonprofit building organizations.

The company’s filing with Public Service Commission also includes plans to add new features or enhancements to its existing residential and commercial energy conservation programs, such as:

For residential customers:

Energy Audits – four types of comprehensive energy audits are available that aim to educate customers about wise energy usage while providing eight free compact fluorescent lamps.

Heating and Cooling – rebates up to $400 to encourage the installation of high-efficiency heating and cooling systems in existing dwellings.

Ceiling Insulation – pays incentive up to $350 when new insulation is added; up from the previous incentive of $200.

Window Replacement/Upgrades – pays incentive of $2.65 per square foot with no maximum; the previous maximum amount was $350.

Window Film – pays incentive up to $2 per square foot with no maximum; an increase from the previous $1 per square foot with a $200 maximum.

Wall Insulation – pays incentive of $0.31 cents per square foot with no maximum; up from the previous $200 maximum for all exterior walls.

HVAC Re-commissioning – pays incentive up to $75 for maintenance and tune-up of HVAC equipment to ensure operation at optimal efficiency.

For business customers:

Commercial Lighting – Offers an increased incentive of $175 per kW for lighting upgrades as well as $25 for each exit sign upgrade to LED technology.

Commercial Cooling – Increased incentives for installation of high-efficiency cooling systems in existing dwellings.

Commercial Duct Repair – pays incentive of $350 for the repair of leaking duct systems; up from the previous level of $200.

HVAC Re-commissioning – pays up to $25 per ton of costs for maintenance and tune-up of HVAC equipment to ensure operation at optimal efficiency.

Standby Generator – pays an increased incentive of $4 per kW for utilization of a customer’s emergency generation capacity during peak time periods.

Commercial Energy-Efficient Motors – pays incentive of $6 per horsepower for energy- efficient motor upgrades.

Cool Roof – pays incentive up to $0.60 per square foot for the installation of a cool roof system designed to reduce heat transfer.

Low-Income Program Enhancements

Tampa Electric’s Low-Income program will receive additional weatherization measures such as insulation and duct repair. Neighborhood service centers that have an established relationship with customers will make initial contact and work with the company to provide customers with information on how to use energy wisely. Together, Tampa Electric and neighborhood service centers will mass deliver low-cost, energy-efficient measures via direct customer contact throughout the company’s service territory.

“Tampa Electric understands that our customers are becoming increasingly aware of their energy costs and our goal is to provide them with the resources and tools to effectively manage their energy use,” said Tampa Electric President Gordon Gillette.

Tampa Electric began its conservation program initiatives in the late 1970s, prior to any federal or state energy conservation requirements. From 1979 through 2009, almost 400,000 customers have participated in Tampa Electric’s conservation programs – offsetting the need to generate enough electricity to serve more than 683,500 average-size homes over a 12-month period.

In 1999, the company installed an 18,000-watt solar panel at the Museum of Science and Industry in Tampa. Additional installations include a 4,000-watt solar panel at Walker Middle School in Odessa, a 7,000-watt solar panel at Tampa Electric’s Manatee Viewing Center in Apollo Beach, a 10,500-watt solar panel at Middleton High School in Tampa, a 15,000-watt photovoltaic array at Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo and a 10,000-watt photovoltaic array at the Florida Aquarium. The energy generated by these arrays helps to serve the customers participating in Tampa Electric’s Renewable Energy program and reduces the need for energy from non-renewable sources.

Tampa Electric offers a Renewable Energy program that makes it easy for customers to purchase a portion of their electricity from renewable sources by signing up for $5 blocks of renewable energy. For each block purchased, Tampa Electric will produce and distribute 200 kilowatt-hours of renewable energy.

As of the end of February 2010, Tampa Electric customers are purchasing approximately 3,785 blocks of renewable energy each month. This is equal to offsetting 757,000 kWh or 647 tons of carbon dioxide monthly – the same as removing 80 cars from the road for one year.

Customers of all kinds, including organizations, can also purchase renewable energy to power one-time events at a convention center, hotel, stadium or any other location. Participation in the company’s Renewable Energy program will help support technologies that create more energy from renewable sources.

For more information on Tampa Electric’s energy-saving programs visit, tampaelectric.com/renewable.

Tampa Electric Company is the principal subsidiary of TECO Energy, Inc. (NYSE: TE), an integrated energy-related holding company with regulated utility businesses, complemented by a family of unregulated businesses. Tampa Electric Company is a regulated utility with both electric and gas divisions (Tampa Electric and Peoples Gas System). Other subsidiaries are engaged in coal, and electric generation and distribution in Guatemala.

Source: Tampa Electric Company

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