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Energy Smart helps St. Cloud business find savings opportunity
ST. CLOUD – Granite Bowl, a bowling alley with two locations in St. Cloud, found opportunities for $3300 per year in energy savings as part of a no-cost lighting assessment facilitated by Energy Smart.
“I had heard a lot about potential savings from lighting upgrades, but did not believe it until I had someone crunch the numbers for me,” said Jeff Cypher, owner of Granite Bowl.
Energy Smart contacted Granite Bowl at the end of January 2009 as part of Energy Smart’s targeted St. Cloud outreach. Thus far, Energy Smart has contacted hundreds of St. Cloud businesses. Dozens have received Energy Smart services, including assessment facilitation and utility rebate information. A handful have agreed to complete energy efficiency upgrades and will save money on energy costs.
Cypher agreed to undergo lighting audits at both the Granite Bowl (1740 St. Germain St. W) and Granite Bowl South (1222 33rd St. S) locations. Energy Smart helped to facilitate the no-cost lighting audits available to Granite Bowl as an Xcel Energy customer.
Cypher plans to upgrade lighting at one location first, and will work with the property owner at the second location where Granite Bowl rents space. The cost to Granite Bowl after receiving $5600 in rebates will total approximately $8000, an amount that would be recovered in cost savings in 2.5 years.
Granite Bowl’s energy saving efforts are not limited to lighting alone. Last year, Cypher replaced a furnace and made sure the other four were properly working – these efforts saved $10,000 last year in natural gas costs. Cypher hopes to measure the energy use of the business’s bowling pin setting machinery as a next step.
Energy Smart Leader Award
The first Energy Smart Leader Award will be given on April 23 at the “Business Sustainability: It’s Not Perception, It’s Profitability” workshop hosted by the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce.
Energy Smart Leaders are Minnesota businesses that demonstrate leadership in energy efficiency – benefitting their community, the environment, and their bottom line.
To nominate a business for this award, please visit our Energy Smart awards page.
Little Falls Area Chamber retrofits City of Lights festival; saves money with rebate from Minnesota Power
LITTLE FALLS — The City of Lights celebration in Little Falls uses approximately 10,000 white light bulbs to outline 56 historic buildings in the city’s downtown. The lights are on from dusk to dawn starting at Thanksgiving and running through January 1st. In 2008, the Little Falls Area Chamber of Commerce chose to upgrade these lights to energy-saving LED bulbs.
“Our electric bills are 73% less with the LED bulbs, which is a huge savings for the Chamber,” said Debora Boelz, President and CEO of the Little Falls Area Chamber of Commerce.
Before rebates from Minnesota Power, the upgrade cost the Little Falls Area Chamber approximately $20,000, with each bulb costing $1.27. Minnesota Power, through its PowerGrant program, provided a grant for $17,040. This amount was based on a formula that combined past energy use, the number of bulbs and projected energy savings.
The Little Falls Chamber will recover the $3,000 the project cost them in one year of energy cost savings.
Minnesota Power has worked with other businesses in the Little Falls area to retrofit their buildings as well. “We are seeing huge energy savings all over town!” said Debora Boelz, president and CEO of the Little Falls Chamber.
Contact Energy Smart at any time to learn more about rebates available for applications of LED technology.
For more news about Energy Smart and the success of Minnesota businesses, visit our news coverage page.