Saving Energy Makes Sense: Dollars and Cents!
Conservation isn’t a new idea for electric cooperatives. In 1937, when SLVREC was incorporated, miles of line needed to be built and substations were few and far between. Members didn’t have the luxury of squandering this scarce resource. Besides, as a non-profit, SLVREC had no incentive to encourage members to use more electricity than they needed. Instead, the cooperative has worked with members to help keep their electric bills as low as possible.
Today, with concerns about greenhouse gases, the high costs associated with building new generation facilities and a desire to reduce our dependency upon foreign oil, energy conservation has gained new momentum. Some utility experts have termed conservation the fifth generation source. Conservation could help forestall the need to build new power plants.
In dollar terms, every dollar spent on conservation equals five dollars spent on generation.
Free Weatherization and Energy Saving Home Upgrades
The SLVREC Energy Foundation offers weatherization assistance through the Energy Resource Center (ERC). You must complete an application for this program and you must meet certain criteria to be eligible. For example, if your home has been weatherized under a state-funded program since 1994, you will not be eligible again at this time. Additionally, the program requires certain public assistance or income qualifications.
The program serves low-income families in Alamosa, Conejos, Costilla, Mineral, Rio Grande and Saguache counties. In most cases, the program provides insulation and associated minor repairs as needed to install insulation. Additionally, depending upon your home and your situation, the program may also offer furnace services and refrigerator replacements. The technicians working on a home will also provide tips on ways to improve the home's energy efficiency.
Kill A Watt Loan Program
Kill A Watt meters are small devices that can help you determine the amount of electricity a particular appliance uses. They are especially helpful for troubleshooting high bills, identifying individual appliance electric use and for comparing the electric use of various conservation strategies. Kill A Watt meters can also be used for school projects for students!
SLVREC has provided most libraries in the Valley with Kill A Watt meters that can be checked out (like a book). You can borrow a Kill A Watt, with instructions for its use, at these libraries:
- Blanca/Fort Garland
- Del Norte
- San Luis
- South Fork
Contact SLVREC if you need help figuring out how to set up the device with your electric rate.