How Much Energy Can We Save Together?

May 30, 2018

The residential electric sponsors of Mass Save® – Cape Light Compact, Eversource, National Grid, and Unitil – collaborate every year to help customers across Massachusetts save money and energy with energy-saving programs and rebates focused on efficient lighting and products. Through teamwork and dedication, the sponsors provide helpful services – including rebates, incentives, and education – that make it easier for their customers to make energy-efficient upgrades. Thanks in part to these efforts, Massachusetts has ranked first on the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE)’s State Energy Efficiency Scorecard for seven consecutive years.

But there’s another key component driving these achievements in energy efficiency across Massachusetts: your participation!! Without thousands of participating customers, this progress would not have been possible. Ultimately, it’s the combined efforts from both customers and sponsors that have contributed to the state’s leadership in energy efficiency. So, how much energy are we saving, and how can you benefit by helping? To find out, we’ll need to dig a little deeper.

Making Small Changes

There are several small, simple changes that customers like you have made to avoid energy waste and reap the savings. These include replacing incandescent bulbs with ENERGY STAR® certified LEDs, using advanced power strips, and installing efficient shower fixtures – just to name a few. Although these changes seem small, the savings can accumulate quickly. For instance, if every household in the territory of a Mass Save sponsor replaced just one bulb with an ENERGY STAR certified LED, the annual savings would add up to more than 84.5 million kWh! That’s enough energy to power nearly 12,000 homes for an entire year! Thanks to the sponsors, there is an abundance of in-store and online discounts on these energy-saving products, making it even more enticing to make the switch!

Updating Appliances

A second change contributing to these savings has been the choice to upgrade to ENERGY STAR certified appliances. The offers and rebates provided by the sponsors of Mass Save on many ENERGY STAR certified appliances – such as dehumidifiers, room air cleaners, and clothes dryers – have helped encourage customers to update their older, inefficient models with more energy-efficient options. ENERGY STAR certified products have been put through several tests and have proven to enhance comfort and energy efficiency in homes. Did you know an ENERGY STAR certified dryer uses 20 percent less energy than a non-certified model, and that an ENERGY STAR certified room air cleaner uses 40 percent less energy than its non-certified counterpart?

In 2017, thousands of customers took advantage of this chance to save energy and money: the sponsors processed over 15,000 rebates for the purchase of dryers, dehumidifiers, and room air cleaners alone! That translates into 38 million kWh saved – the amount of electricity needed to power 5,300 homes for a year!

Choosing to Recycle

The third, and perhaps more surprising, way that we’ve achieved these savings is through the Mass Save appliance recycling program. Two of the major components of this program are dehumidifier turn-in events and the refrigerator and freezer recycling program.

Since 2015, the sponsors have been hosting dehumidifier turn-in events, during which customers can recycle their old, inefficient dehumidifiers at no-cost and receive a $30 rebate just for participating. To date, nearly 4,000 units have been recycled, resulting in just shy of 3 million kWh saved – that has the same environmental benefit of planting 57,000 trees!  Additionally, the sponsors offer a $30 rebate for the purchase of a new ENERGY STAR certified dehumidifier, so you can dehumidify your home using over 25% less energy than if you were to use a non-certified model.

Adding to the success of the appliance recycling program is the fridge and freezer recycling offer: customers can receive a no-cost pickup of their old or extra unit, and obtain a rebate for doing so. In 2017, approximately 17,000 fridges and freezers were recycled through this program! Because new, ENERGY STAR certified fridges can save customers up to $100 a year in energy costs compared to older, less efficient models, these recycled units have translated into savings across the state. Plus, disposing of units through this program provides the added environmental benefit of ensuring potentially hazardous materials – such as refrigerant and mercury – are disposed of properly and that recyclable components which make up 95% of these units – are targeted for reuse.

There is always room for improvement when it comes to energy efficiency. In Massachusetts, we’re fortunate to have a community of customers and sponsors that has made energy efficiency a priority. The residential electric sponsors of Mass Save are excited to continue offering services that help increase energy savings for their customers, and are even more excited to see participation in this program continue to grow. We hope you join us this year in cutting kWh and reaping the benefits of energy efficiency!

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