WAUKEGAN, Ill.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–ComEd and the Waukegan Public Schools (WPS) today celebrated the completion of a five-year, 51-project energy-efficiency effort that is estimated to save WPS more than $609,000 a year on its overall electric bills.
The effort is part of the ComEd Energy Efficiency Program which, since 2008, has saved northern Illinois families and businesses approximately $6.7 billion on their electric bills. The program recently received the highest level of recognition from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Department of Energy with an ENERGY STAR® Partner of the Year—Sustained Excellence Award.
“We believe everyone has an equal right to clean air and affordable energy, which is why we are proud to offer energy efficiency programs to help customers save energy and money, while helping to mitigate the impacts of climate change,” said Melissa Washington, senior vice president of customer operations for ComEd. “ComEd is honored to be part of such a massive undertaking with the Waukegan Public Schools to enhance the environment by improving lighting in classrooms, halls, gymnasiums, parking lots and other areas accessed by students, staff and the community.”
Since December 2017, WPS has collaborated with ComEd and its authorized energy-efficiency service providers to install energy-efficient lighting fixtures and bulbs, surge-protected outlets and smart strips, refrigeration and kitchen parts and equipment, fire exit signs, air-conditioner components and other energy-saving measures at multiple school buildings. WPS received approximately $1.8 million in incentives through the ComEd Energy Efficiency Program.
The combined energy savings of all 51 projects is estimated to be more than 6 million kilowatt-hours, the amount of energy it takes to power more than 700 ComEd customers’ homes. These savings have an environmental benefit equal to reducing more than 6.4 million pounds of carbon emissions from the atmosphere or removing nearly 650 cars from the road.
In recent years, Waukegan Public Schools, also known as Waukegan Community Unit School District #60, has used incentives offered by utilities to improve the district’s energy efficiency. This year alone, the district switched from fluorescent lighting to LED lighting in 26 school buildings. District staff also worked with ComEd-recommended engineers to study building automation systems and implement recommended changes to improve efficiency. Most recently, the district worked with ComEd to install smart power strips that cut down on residual draws of electricity from idling computer screens and printers.
“As a district, we’re always eager to take advantage of opportunities to improve our energy-efficiency,” said Kevin Kruckeberg, Waukegan Public Schools director of operations. “As our costs to operate are reduced, we are able to better serve our students. The cost savings we have realized are being applied to overdue maintenance and building improvement projects to benefit the safety and health of our students and staff.”
ENERGY STAR Sustained Excellence Award
This year marks the 10th straight year ComEd has received an ENERGY STAR® Partner of the Year award, and the 13th year in a row that the northern Illinois energy company has been recognized by the EPA and DOE. Award recipients are part of a distinguished group that have made long-term commitments to fighting climate change and protecting public health through energy efficiency. Sustained Excellence Awards are presented to partners that already received ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year recognition for a minimum of two consecutive years and have gone above and beyond the criteria needed to qualify for recognition.
In 2021, approximately 460,000 ComEd residential and business customers saved nearly $189 million on their electric bills by taking advantage of ComEd’s energy-saving offerings.
“We know it’s going to take all of us working together to tackle the climate crisis, and the 2022 ENERGY STAR award-winning partners are demonstrating what it takes to build a more sustainable future,” said EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan. “These companies are showing once again that taking action in support of a clean energy economy can be good not only for the environment, but also for business and customers.”
The ComEd Energy Efficiency Program, which is funded in compliance with state law, offers a range of services and incentives to help families and businesses save money and use energy more wisely. Since 2008, the program has helped customers save nearly 62 million megawatt-hours of electricity, the amount of energy it takes to power more than 7.1 million ComEd customers’ homes. These savings have an environmental benefit equal to reducing more than 52 billion pounds of carbon emissions from the atmosphere removing more than 5 million cars from the road or planting more than 29 million acres of trees.
ComEd is a unit of Chicago-based Exelon Corporation (NASDAQ: EXC), a Fortune 200 energy company with approximately 10 million electricity and natural gas customers – the largest number of customers in the U.S. ComEd powers the lives of more than 4 million customers across northern Illinois, or 70 percent of the state’s population. For more information visit ComEd.com and connect with the company on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.
About ENERGY STAR
ENERGY STAR® is the government-backed symbol for energy efficiency, providing simple, credible, and unbiased information that consumers and businesses rely on to make well-informed decisions. Thousands of industrial, commercial, utility, state, and local organizations—including more than 40 percent of the Fortune 500®—rely on their partnership with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to deliver cost-saving energy efficiency solutions. Since 1992, ENERGY STAR and its partners helped American families and businesses avoid more than $500 billion in energy costs and achieve more than 4 billion metric tons of greenhouse gas reductions. More background information about ENERGY STAR’s impacts can be found at EnergyStar.gov/Impacts and state-level information can be found at EnergyStar.gov/StateFacts.