TexasIsHot – Energy Efficiency

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Mar 26 2012

San Antonio Small Businesses “Seeing the Light” with Energy Upgrades

If you were going to a new gallery showing of your favorite local artist, would you want to view the canvasses under dim lights? Or if you were reupholstering your favorite sofa, would you want to look at fabric samples under fluorescent lighting and risk mistaking indigo blue for charcoal black?

Small businesses are a main economic driver in cities across the country — and San Antonio is no different. Lighting may seem like a small detail, but as more than 800 small businesses in San Antonio have discovered, having the right lighting can improve business and conserve energy. With over 40 percent of a company’s energy consumption coming from interior lighting, upgrading to more efficient lighting can dramatically reduce a company’s energy consumption and lower utility bills.

As part of San Antonio’s “Mission Verde” initiative, the city launched the City Lights Small Business Lighting Retrofit Program using Recovery Act funding through the Energy Department’sEECBG program. The City Lights program is helping business owners increase their lighting efficiency, reduce energy use and lower electricity bills.

In the first 10 months of City Lights, participating small business saved an estimated 4.9 million kilowatt-hours of electricity. Beyond these savings, the program trained and employed local energy audit experts and electrical contractors who helped businesses identify potential energy and cost saving measures.

The program worked in cooperation with the municipally owned local utility, CPS Energy, as well as the energy-efficiency program management company EnerPath, which helped the city oversee the program.

City Lights has not only lowered utility bills, but the city has also received positive feedback from owners and staff of the participating businesses as well as their patrons.

Richard Sanchez, co-owner of A.J’s Fresh Line Up barbershop, offered his views on his shop’s new lighting upgrades, which only cost the business approximately $20 after the program’s incentives were included.

“You can’t give a good haircut in bad lighting. We are already seeing our bills drop and it’s much brighter than it was before,” said Sanchez.

Like Richard Sanchez, the 847 other businesses owners participating in the program are leading the way for San Antonio to become a sustainable community leader in the 21st century.

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Testimonials
  • "“As the Texas population continues to grow, so will our energy consumption needs. We must have tools that empower the consumer to choose their products and monitor their usage wisely. TexasIsHot.org is a great resource, which is exactly what Texans need in today’s deregulated market.”" - State Rep. Burt Solomons (R-Carrollton), Chairman of House State Affairs Committee
  • "In order to meet our goals, we need programs like the TexasIsHot campaign to help change the way people think about energy." - State Sen. Troy Fraser (R-Horseshoe Bay), Chairman of Senate Natural Resources Committee
  • "Texas leads the nation in wind power because it makes money, not because it makes us feel better. Texans are a practical, penny-wise people who I think will be happy to learn how to save a few bucks on their power bills with the common-sense advice at TexasIsHot.org."-Jerry Patterson, Commissioner of the Texas General Land Office
  • "If every Texas household adopted just a few of the dozens of energy efficiency strategies referenced on TexasIsHot.org, our air would be cleaner, our limited supply of natural resources would be better protected, and our wallets would be heavier..." Kip Averitt (R-Waco), Former State Senator and Chairman of Senate Committee on Natural Resources
  • ”The TexasIsHot campaign targets an important piece of the clean energy effort -- educating Texans on the way we use electricity and quantifying the financial and environmental costs associated with our use. By just reducing the amount of electricity we use and waste, TexasIsHot.org can show people how to save money..." State Sen. Kirk Watson (D-Austin)
  • "Fluctuating energy costs are really hurting Texas families and businesses, but by just making a few easy changes, Texans can cut down on energy waste. TexasIsHot.org is a tremendous resource which arms consumers with the information they need to save themselves money by becoming more energy efficient, and help our environment." State Sen. Rodney Ellis (D-Houston)
  • "Texas is the third fastest growing state in the nation with a net growth of 1,000 people each and every day. This brings many challenges including providing clean and affordable electricity. That is why I'm excited about TexasIsHot.org. This website is an instructional resource that will help Texans save on their energy bills at home and in the workplace..." State Rep. Phil King (R-Weatherford)
  • "Now, more than ever, Texans need to work together to conserve energy and to make more efficient use of the energy we consume. The TexasIsHot.org website is an extraordinary resource for people who want to save money and help conserve our precious natural resources..." State Rep. Rafael Anchía (D-Dallas)
  • "By partnering with the TexasIsHot Coalition we can extend our effort’s reach, leverage our resources, and ensure that Austin’s energy grid continues to be a test-bed for technologies, products, and services that will transform our state’s energy system." Brewster McCracken, Executive Director, Pecan Street Project
  • "The City of Houston is working harder than ever to make Houston green and energy efficient, but we need the help of every citizen. I would encourage everyone to take a moment to explore the TexasIsHot website to learn what we can all do to make Houston, and the rest of Texas, the green and energy efficient example for the rest of the nation." Mayor Annise Parker, Houston
  • "Energy efficiency is one of our top priorities. Partnering with the TexasIsHot Coalition will help us educate citizens and local businesses about energy-efficient practices in order to meet our goal of reducing residential and commercial electric use." Gavin Dillingham, Chief of Sustainable Growth – General Services Department, for the City of Houston
  • "We are excited about the new partnership that the City of Corpus Christi has entered into with the TexasIsHot Coalition. TexasIsHot.org provides a platform to educate policy makers, city employees and citizens on how to save money and help the environment by conserving energy..." Mayor Joe Adame, Corpus Christi
  • "I am excited that the City of Corpus Christi has joined the TexasIsHot Coalition and look forward to working with them to help Texans become smarter energy users. Energy efficiency is by far the best way for people to reduce their bills and help the environment, but we need education and outreach to make this happen." State Rep. Solomon Ortiz, Jr (D-Corpus Christi)
  • "Because of its fast growth and hot summers, Texas has to get smarter about energy conservation. I applaud the efforts of Corpus Christi and TexasIsHot to help businesses and residents reap the benefits of increased efficiency." Senator Juan “Chuy” Hinojosa (D-McAllen)
  • "Energy efficiency is the cleanest, quickest and cheapest way to get smart about energy use, saving both money and the environment. I applaud the TexasIsHot Coalition in their effort to educate Texans about the benefits of energy efficiency..." Luke Metzger, Director, Environment Texas
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