Idaho Falls, ID – Idaho Falls School District 91 was one of four recipients to receive an energy efficiency rebate check from Idaho Falls Power (IFP) at the Celebrate our Hydro Power Heritage event held at the Colonial Theater on Sept. 25.
In the 1980s, with the population in the northwest continuing to grow, the electric division was faced with a new set of issues. The region quickly realized that its hydropower resource was a finite resource. In addition to facing rate increases, the utility launched conservation programs to try to throttle demand. In 1981, Idaho Falls Power’s energy efficiency program was started and continues strong today.
“Investing in energy efficiency is the least cost option to expanding our system capacity and protecting our affordable cost rates,” explains Jackie Flowers, general manager, Idaho Falls Power. “Idaho Falls Power customers have responded very favorably to energy efficiency programs – looking for ways to more efficiently live or work in our community to stretch our current resources,” adds Flowers.
Idaho Falls School District 91 worked closely with IFP and Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) in its new building plan to identify energy efficient building opportunities. The investment in energy efficiency measures installed at Dora Erickson, Ethel Boys, Longfellow and Edgemont saved the school district money over the long-term operation and maintenance of the facilities. All four new schools combined are expected to save more than 3,596,682 kilowatt-hours from these measures – enough energy to power 217 homes. The school district was presented with a $500k rebate check ($125k per school).
Busch Agricultural Resources is the utility’s largest customer and has continuously demonstrated interest in a partnership with IFP to make their operations more efficient. Recently, IFP has been working with Busch Ag to install energy efficient equipment in their new wastewater handling facility. These improvements will save more than 263,000 kilowatt-hours – enough energy to power nearly 16 homes. The company was presented with a rebate check for $48,910.50.
InteGrow Malt LLC, the utility’s second largest customer has been able to expand their plant capacity without substantially increasing their electric load by improving efficiency of their processes. IFP has been working with InteGrow Malt to replace compressors with variable speed drives that will save more than 437,000 kilowatt-hours – enough energy to power more than 28 homes. The company was presented with a rebate check of $75,460.88.
Eastern Idaho Regional Medical Center (EIRMC) has led IFP’s business community in energy efficiency – going above and beyond any program offering IFP has provided. They obtained Energy Star Designations in 2008, 2009 and 2011. A few of their recent projects include lighting upgrades that have resulted in more than 225,000 kilowatt-hours savings – enough energy to power more than 13 homes. EIRMC was presented with a $38,688 rebate check.
In recent years, IFP has seen energy efficiency trends move from an average annual savings of 1.369 million kilowatt-hours to an annual savings of 5.672 million kilowatt-hours.
“The pursuit of energy efficiency has allowed this community to extend the life and capacity of its generation resources – both locally owned and regionally under contract like those BPA resources – saving us all money in the long run,” states Flowers.
For additional information on Idaho Falls Power’s energy efficiency program, see link on the homepage of the city’s website.
Media Note: To schedule an interview or for additional information, contact Kerry McCullough, public information officer, City of Idaho Falls at (208) 821-6321.
Photo: Idaho Falls School District 91 Superintendent, George Boland receives check from Idaho Falls Power’s Conversation Energy Specialist, Wid Ritchie at the “Celebrate our Hydropower Heritage” event on Sept. 25.
About Idaho Falls: Situated along the Snake River at the western edge of the world famous Rocky Mountains, Idaho Falls has all the features of big city living, but still embraces a small town charm. Our skyline consists of the majestic Teton Mountain Range, and in our backyard is the world’s most famous park – Yellowstone. As the regional center for healthcare, shopping, and entertainment, Idaho Falls is attractive to small and large businesses alike and consistently finds itself listed in the top ten rankings of many prestigious magazines, newspapers and professional community research publications. Learn more at http://www.idahofallsidaho.gov/