Southern California Edison Proposes Providing Energy-Saving Compact Fluorescent Bulbs to 1 Million Low-Income Homes

April 12, 2007

April 12, 2007

Initiative is part of Edison International’s leadership in reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

ROSEMEAD, Calif., April 12, 2007—Southern California Edison (SCE) will ask state regulators for authorization to provide 1 million low-income households with a complimentary set of six compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFL) to help families reduce lighting costs.

“Achieving California’s groundbreaking greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction goals will require big, bold energy initiatives and strong partnerships between the state, its utilities, and residential and business customers,” said Michael R. Peevey, president of the California Public Utilities Commission.  “We look forward to reviewing this creative proposal by Edison for just such a partnership.”

“This initiative is part of our company’s continuing commitment to industry leadership in promoting customer energy-efficiency, purchasing renewable energy, and supporting the emergence of plug-in hybrid technology,” said John E. Bryson, SCE chairman.  “We believe our strategies lead the way for our industry, offering significant promise for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.”

If approved, SCE would distribute the CFLs with the help of a broad network of community-based organizations that work with the utility to deliver SCE’s energy-efficiency services and promote the utility’s low-income energy-discount program.  SCE proposes using these community-based organizations, along with others, to identify families that qualify for the million-home initiative, distributing the new bulbs door to door along with a packet of educational information on other ways homeowners can save energy and money.

SCE will propose that the estimated $22 million cost of this program be funded by an increase in the Public Goods Charge component of customers’ rates.  If approved, the program would result in a slight rate increase.

Anticipated program benefits:
- The bulbs require only a third of the electricity used by incandescent bulbs and last 10 times as long;
- An average household receiving the bulbs will save up to $72 per year;
- The program will save California 278 million kilowatt-hours (kWh) of generation, enough to power more than 35,000 homes;
- Greenhouse gas emissions will be reduced by as much as 155,400 tons, equivalent to taking nearly 30,000 cars off the road; and
- Power demand, the amount of electricity the state needs to generate at any point in time, will be reduced by about 24,400 kilowatts.

“The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is pleased SCE is proposing this expansion of their energy-efficient lighting program under our national  ‘ENERGY STAR Change a Light, Change the World’ campaign and hopes that other utilities around the country will follow SCE's lead,” said Kathleen Hogan, director of the EPA’s Climate Protection Partnerships Division.  “Partnerships like this can make a big difference in helping each of us protect the environment and reduce greenhouse gas emissions on a national scale one energy-efficient light at a time.” 

“SCE's proposed program would help a million low-income families save money that could be used for other necessities,” said Alex Sotomayor, president and CEO of the Maravilla Foundation, an East Los Angeles community organization, and president of ACCES, a statewide association of community-based organizations serving low-income households.  “At the same time, SCE’s proposed program would allow these families to be part of our state’s effort to protect the environment.”

Related Facts
- SCE is the nation’s leader in electric energy-efficiency savings.   During the past five years, SCE customers have saved more than 4 billion kWh — enough energy to power 500,000 homes for an entire year — by participating in the utility’s energy-efficiency programs, and reduced greenhouse gas emissions by more than 2 million tons – the equivalent of removing 250,000 cars from the road.  The utility’s customers achieved estimated energy savings of about 3.5 billion kWh annually by means of these programs.

- SCE helps all customers switch to energy-saving compact fluorescent bulbs by reducing the price of such bulbs at the retail level.  The company provides a rebate to manufacturers and major retailers who pass along the discount to customers by reducing the retail price by the amount of the rebate – from $1 to $2.50 per bulb.  In the past year alone, more than 6 million bulbs have been distributed through SCE’s retail program resulting in energy savings of approximately 330 million kWh. 

- The economic value of energy-efficiency programs is commonly measured in avoided generation costs, which vary across the country.  For example, utility costs are higher in California due to factors such as the limited use of coal as a generation fuel, the state’s aggressive environmental programs, and the unusual “load” profile created or usage pattern by the region’s climate.

- GHG reductions per kWh saved vary relative to the fuel mix used to generate electricity.  For example, carbon emissions from California generation are approximately half the national average due to restrictions on the use of coal.

Top U.S. Utility Energy-Efficiency Programs, 1992 to 2005
Savings shown in megawatt-hours (MWh) or thousands of kWh. 

Utility

Total MWh Saved
Southern California Edison 8,901,686
Pacific Gas & Electric 6,232,939
Northern States Power 3,787,182
Florida Power & Light 3,663,877
Connecticut Light & Power 2,118,687
Puget Sound Energy 2,086,208
PacifiCorp 2,052,368
Massachusetts Electric 1,990,984
Boston Edison 1,346,101
Interstate Power and Light 1,136,646
Minnesota Power 892,802
MidAmerican Energy 657,216

Source - U.S. Dept. of Energy, Energy Information Administration, Form EIA-861.

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An Edison International (NYSE:EIX) company, Southern California Edison is one of the nation’s largest electric utilities, serving a population of more than 13 million via 4.7 million customer accounts in a 50,000-square-mile service area within central, coastal and Southern California.