BC Hydro promotes energy saving

They may cost more, but in the long run using energy saving light bulbs and appliances will save you money and energy at the same time.

They may cost more, but in the long run using energy saving light bulbs and appliances will save you money and energy at the same time.

That’s the message BC Hydro is sharing this month as part of its Power Smart month campaign.

“If you upgrade all the lighting in your home to LEDs [light emitting diodes], you would see a 75 per cent decrease in your lighting costs,” BC Hydro’s Media Relations and Issues Management  spokesperson Kevin Aquino said.

Energy savings as well as pocket book savings can also be had using Energy Star appliances and televisions, Aquino added.

“Energy Star televisions save customers 30 per cent on their electricity bill and Energy Star fridges and freezers will cut up to 20 per cent on electricity usage,” he said.

Getting retailers onside is not a difficult task, BC Hydro Business Development Manager, Robert Lee said.

“In dealing with retailers and manufacturers, they’re always trying to differentiate themselves in the market place,” Lee, said.

“People are caring more and more about energy efficiency and conservation and being green in general.

“So by partnering with BC Hydro and Power Smart they can get a bit of an edge in the marketplace.”

The challenge, rather is to encourage consumers to spend a little extra for the energy saving bulbs, or to purchase Energy Star appliances which is the focus of the Power Smart program, Lee said.

For example, light-emitting diode (LED) light bulbs can last about 25 times longer than your average incandescent light bulb, but they cost more than regular light bulbs.

“These are energy star bulbs, they’ve been tested to meet Energy Star criteria,” Lee said.

“So we participate to help make customers aware these products are available, what the benefits are for them, their home utility bills and the province as a whole,” Lee said.

“Our incentive programs serve to help the consumer bridge the price gap and spur adoption of the energy saving products.”

The energy savings are good for the province as well, Aquino said, to the tune of about 3,400 GWH saved per year, enough to power more than 300,000 homes.

Retailers participating in the Power Smart program include Canadian Tire, Audio Video Unlimited, Home Hardware, Extra Foods and Sears.