The Turlock Irrigation District is hoping increased rebates in 2016 will incentivize more customers to use less energy and save money in their homes and businesses.
"As you are aware, TID has some aggressive goals for the upcoming years and after reviewing our current programs, we realized there were some changes and additions needed in order to get us closer to our goals," said TID Utility Analyst Monique Hampton.
"We plan to develop programs that all of our customers can take advantage of," continued Hampton.
Hampton said that although the current non-residential custom rebate program has been successful, she said that a number of factors prompted TID to increase the custom rebate amount in 2016 from $.05/kWh to $.08/kWh for first year savings. The custom rebate program is offered by TID to address the unique needs of customers and encourage energy efficient technologies.
"We recognized a few things: our custom rebate has not changed since its inception, the rebate amount was falling out of line with our utility peers and there is a continued rise in costs for energy efficiency projects," explained Hampton.
TID will also be providing two new non-residential programs for 2016, one of which is the LED Lighting program which will offer a rebate amount of $.10/kWh for first year savings. Other lighting projects will continue to be paid under the custom rebate program.
"LEDs have been proven to be a longer lasting product and provide larger savings, but are more expensive than other lighting products," said Hampton. "We hope this will encourage our customers to invest in a more efficient product, which will save them money and help TID move closer to our goals."
The second new non-residential program is the Agricultural Irrigation Pump Overhaul Program, which will offer an agricultural irrigation pump rebate that will hopefully encourage TID's agricultural customers to improve their existing groundwater pump efficiency.
Under this program, customers will be paid $.08/kWh for first year savings. Hampton said that rebates will be issued for pump replacements, installation of variable frequency drives, bowl changes and overhaul pumps among others.
Hampton said that although TID is planning to implement these new non-residential programs and changes next year, existing non-residential programs will still be in effect.
For residential customers, Hampton said that upon reviewing current programs, TID realized the need to target programs that would reduce bills in the summer and help customers save energy. As a result, TID is planning to offer a number of new residential programs and several air conditioning rebates.
"We feel it is very important to offer air conditioning rebates because an air conditioner is the single largest consumer of electricity in a home," said Hampton.
Starting in 2016, TID will implement new and improved central air conditioner rebates, one of which will give customers a $250 rebate if they replace an old, inefficient air conditioner with an ENERGY STAR qualified air conditioner with a 14 Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio or higher.
The SEER rating of a unit is determined by dividing the cooling output during an average cooling-season by the total electric energy input during the same time frame. The higher a unit's SEER rating, the more energy efficient it is.
TID will also provide customers will all-electric homes with a $350 rebate for the purchase of an ENERGY STAR qualified central heat pump and a $500 rebate for customers who purchase a high efficiency central air conditioner, which she said is defined as having a 16 SEER rating or higher.
"The benefits of installing high efficiency air conditioner can reduce operating costs and can reduce carbon emissions," said Hampton.
TID will add a number of new residential programs, including a Pool Pump Rebate Program that will incentivize customers to purchase a variable speed pool pump with a $200 rebate. Hampton said that this pool pump will also save customers $280 a year on average.
"During the summer months a pool pump is one of the largest energy consumers," said Hampton. "The energy used to operate the pool equipment for swimming season can equal the energy to power an average home for the same period."
Hampton said that TID will also collaborate with Modesto Irrigation District in 2016 to kickoff a new LED pilot program for residential customers. Under this new program, TID will offer a $10 rebate to residential customers for every $20 they spend on ENERY STAR qualified LEDs.
"Just as we are offering a LED program for our non-residential customers, we wanted to pilot a LED program for our residential programs," said Hampton. "Based on the success and interest we had at Public Power Week, we are hopeful that our customers will take advantage of this program."
To view TID's current energy efficiency rebates, visit tid.com/for-home/rebates/energy-efficiency-rebates.