Utility companies may not be the first bunch that comes to mind when one thinks of proponents of energy efficiency, but maybe they should be. In reality, natural gas utilities are uniquely positioned to promote smart energy use. Due in part to natural gas utility efforts to help their customers implement energy saving measures, the average American home uses 32 percent less natural gas now than in 1980 – benefiting both consumer finances and the environment.
Each year, AGA surveys its member natural gas utilities to determine what they are doing to help customers use natural gas more responsibly. Ways in which these utilities encourage responsible energy use include offering cash rebates for upgrades to more efficient appliances, providing tools to help customers understand their energy use, and supplying information about what changes a customer can make to his home or business to use energy smartly.
This year’s results demonstrate that utilities and their customers are taking energy efficiency seriously, and that their actions are having an impact. In 2007:
- Nearly $329 million was budgeted to help customers use natural gas more efficiently.
- Energy savings achieved through natural gas energy efficiency programs were enough to offset 0.6 million tons of carbon.
- Programs administered by utilities helped customers reduce the amount of natural gas they use in their home by an average of 9 percent.
For consumers of natural gas, these programs are helpful in reducing energy bills without sacrificing the comfort or productivity of homes and businesses. For all of us, they help contribute to a cleaner, greener planet.
For a link to the full survey report, and related information about natural gas utilities and energy efficiency, please click here.