Contributions from 108 of Wisconsin’s electric and natural gas utilities fund Focus on Energy, a statewide energy efficiency and renewable energy program.
The statewide energy efficiency and renewable resources program is honoring 18 winners, each chosen for their efforts to improve energy efficiency in Wisconsin. Later this year, Focus on Energy will join the winners’ respective utilities to honor that commitment in an award ceremony for each.
“We’re extremely excited to congratulate each of this year’s winners for their commitment to reducing energy waste,” said Erinn Monroe-Nye, Focus on Energy Program Director. “These recipients are among the many Wisconsin businesses, school districts and local municipalities proving Wisconsin is in for energy efficiency. They’re making smart energy decisions that lower operating costs, while making the state’s economy more globally competitive.”
Wisconsin’s Focus on Energy program investments in 2015 and 2016 generated $208 million in economic benefits and annually supported more than 1,200 jobs during that two-year period.
Focus on Energy works with eligible Wisconsin residents and businesses to install cost effective energy efficiency and renewable energy projects on behalf of 108 electric and natural gas utilities.
Energy savings from completed projects coupled with positive impacts across the state’s economy produced a $4.77 return for every dollar invested over the two-year study period.
HANCOCK – At Heartland Farms, water and fertilizer are not the only inputs used efficiently.
Lighting and equipment upgrades made possible with incentives from Wisconsin’s Focus on Energy program have lowered the farm’s annual energy costs by almost $89,000.
“Cutting energy costs improves our bottom line,” explains Jeremie Pavelski, Heartland Farms President. “We are always looking for ways to be cost effective and efficient. These savings improve our competitiveness as a local employer and as a supplier of the national chip potato market.”
MADISON – Grain dryers being replaced this harvest season may qualify for a Focus on Energy incentive.
“It makes sense to replace older, inefficient grain dryers with efficient models,” said Casey Langan, Focus on Energy spokesman. “An equipment upgrade cuts a farm’s operating costs and avoids excessive repair costs during the harvest season.”
Focus on Energy’s incentive for energy efficient grain dryers (powered by natural gas) is $8 per bushel/hour drying capacity. Propane heated grain dryers are not eligible.
LENA – “That first compliment from a farmer had me hooked,” Nicole Zaidel said of showing how energy efficiency projects can improve a farm’s financial bottom line.
“Farmers are personable, you can talk to them like a friend,” said Zaidel, who works as an energy advisor for Focus on Energy, a statewide program that promotes energy efficiency and renewable energy, funded by Wisconsin utilities.
“Unlike some other businesses, when you meet with a farmer you’re usually talking with the owner and decision maker,” she added.
CASHTON – Jessica Anderson has a natural connection to the farmers she serves as an energy advisor for Wisconsin’s Focus on Energy program.
“I relate to their get-down-to-business approach,” said the former 4-H and FFA member who resides in Cashton. “I’m looking to help them save money and move forward with energy efficiency projects that might not otherwise get accomplished.”
When you save energy, you save money.
It’s a simple premise for any farm, agribusiness or homeowner.
Wisconsin utilities have partnered to offer a statewide energy efficiency and renewable energy program known as Focus on Energy since 2001. It offers technical assistance and financial incentives to help participants complete energy efficiency projects (that would not otherwise get completed) in homes, schools, and farms and businesses of all sizes.
MADISON – Saving money and reducing energy waste can be as simple can be as screwing in a LED lightbulb or plugging your television into an advanced power strip.
Wisconsin’s Focus on Energy program is offering free packs of energy saving products to ratepayers of participating Wisconsin utilities.
Helping Wisconsin’s people and landscape.
Those are Joe Kottwitz’s favorite parts of his job as an energy advisor with Focus on Energy.
Focus on Energy, a statewide program funded by participating Wisconsin utilities, works with eligible residents and businesses to install cost effective energy efficiency and renewable energy projects that otherwise would not be completed, or to complete them sooner than scheduled.
“I like the daily interaction of meeting new people and helping them in some way,” says Kottwitz, 30.
Kottwitz helps farmers, school districts and local governments access Focus on Energy’s information, resources and financial incentives to implement projects. These efforts reduce energy waste, promotes in-state economic development, and protects the environment.
“I appreciate Wisconsin’s land ethic, so my overarching personal and professional goal is to contribute to our natural environment,” said the self-described outdoorsy guy.