CUB Report Finds Efficiency Programs are Best Bet for Savings

CUB Report

CUB Report: Efficiency Overtakes Electricity Competition As Most Reliable Way To Cut Power Bills

PR Newswire, March 2, 2015

As shopping for electricity suppliers becomes more expensive in Illinois, energy efficiency programs have emerged as the most reliable way to cut utility bills, replacing low-cost power deals that have become scarce since the early days of market deregulation, according to a Citizens Utility Board (CUB) analysis released Monday.

CUB’s report, “Tipping Point: A Shifting Electricity Market and Illinois’ Best Bet for Savings,” shows how even the most basic efficiency program, CUBEnergySaver.com, has the potential to save Commonwealth Edison customers $153 million a year.

“While there are still opportunities to save through electricity competition, shopping for an alternative supplier has become more of a gamble in Illinois,” CUB Executive Director David Kolata said. “Efficiency programs like CUB Energy Saver are never a gamble. They are the best bet in today’s market.”

CUBEnergySaver.com, which gives homes customized money-saving plans, is among the most accessible of Illinois efficiency programs—it’s free and all customers can use it regardless of their power supplier. CUB’s analysis of CUB Energy Saver vs. alternative supplier deals pitched door-to-door, online, by mail and by phone indicates a major shift in the market.

CUB found that the average price offered by ComEd competitors marketing to individual consumers has increased 23 percent, from about 6.7 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh) in May 2013 to about 8.2 cents per kWh on Feb. 25, 2015. That’s higher than ComEd’s price to compare: about 7.6 cents per kWh through May.

On the other hand, CUB Energy Saver has been helping consumers cut electricity waste by an average of nearly four percent. While the 9,000 CUBEnergySaver.com users have the potential to individually save hundreds of dollars a year, even average savings make a significant impact when expanded across ComEd territory. If all 3.48 million ComEd residential customers used the tool, total yearly savings could reach about $153 million, CUB found.

Plus, CUB Energy Saver users who connect the service to their ComEd accounts can record actual kWh savings and earn points redeemable for gift cards from popular retailers.

The free service, managed by CUB and the software firm C3, based in Redwood City, Calif., features simple actions for homes on modest budgets, including installing efficient lighting and unplugging kitchen appliances. To join, take your ComEd bill, visit www.CUBEnergySaver.com, hit “Register Now,” and follow the instructions to link to your ComEd account.

Created by the Illinois Legislature, CUB opened its doors in 1984 to represent the interests of residential and small-business utility customers. The nonprofit utility watchdog group has saved consumers more than $20 billion by helping to block rate hikes and secure refunds. Call CUB’s Consumer Hotline, 1-800-669-5556, or visit CUB’s award-winning website, www.CitizensUtilityBoard.org.

SOURCE Citizens Utility Board

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http://www.citizensutilityboard.org

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