Citizens Utility Board represents IL utility ratepayers & advocates for cheaper and cleaner energy.
Our guest speaker Christina discussed the Clean Energy Hierarchy (ranked from most impactful to least impactful)
Clean Energy Hierarchy
1. Directly installing solar on your property;
2. Community solar
3. Green plans
Citizens Utility Board has an updated (and free) Guide to Home Savings. It’s filled with tips on how to cut your energy and telecom costs at home.
Visit CUB's solarinthecommunity.com for all the resources.
CUB's consumer hotline: (800) 669-5556
To view Christina’s full presentation for EEC, visit here.
Public Interest Research Group is a public interest advocacy group that has both national and state chapters, and they work on any issue that falls under that umbrella. Currently, they are focusing on gas utilities, specifically a surcharge enabled by the state in 2013 that allows the gas utilities to charge customers more for infrastructures that at the time was to address safety concerns, but unfortunately, they are not prioritizing safety and still spending billions of dollars in Chicago with People’s Gas. PIRG is advocating for a policy that will end this surcharge altogether. The bill that PIRG introduced in February, called the Heating Affordability and Utility Act represents a significant reform to the alternative retail energy supply industry. A summary of the legislation and a list of supporters can be viewed here.
- Home Energy Assessment: ComEd customers have opportunities to reduce energy usage with a FREE energy assessment that includes free and discounted products for your home. ComEd has partnered with your natural gas utility to bring electric and natural gas savings to you. Schedule your assessment today!
- The Hourly Pricing program helps us be mindful of electricity usage by showing the benefits of shifting our usage to different times. To learn more and sign up, visit ComEd's Hourly Pricing Program.
- The Peak Time Savings program sends you notifications when electricity usage is the dirtiest and most expensive. To learn more and sign up, visit Peak Time Savings.
- The Central AC Cycling program reduces central air conditioning electricity usage when it is dirtiest and most expensive.
- To learn more and sign up, visit Central AC Cycling.
Common Energy works with state-supported clean energy programs that lower emissions and offers guaranteed savings on your electricity. Because of limitations on roof access and roof suitability the majority of Americans cannot install solar panels or other clean energy technologies on their properties. Common Energy solves this problem by partnering with clean energy developers and local utilities to connect new clean energy to the grid. By signing up with common energy, you will: receive guaranteed savings on your electricity bill each month for up to 20 years, make a positive impact for your community by lowering pollution, and support local clean energy and local jobs. As an incentive to support the project, each month you will receive credit that lower your bill.
To view Luke’s full presentation for EEC, visit here.
To take action on energy legislation in Illinois, visit https://ilenviro.org/iec-action-alerts/ and The Illinois Clean Jobs Coalition at https://ilcleanjobs.org/.
To learn and join the campaign to Democratize ComEd, visit https://demcomed.org/. With the democratization and municipalization of ComEd, an elected utility board could ensure programs such as these are more accessible, equitable, and meaningful, as well as, move to a decarbonized future.
Utility Assistance from Utility Companies
- Energy Assistance: Questions and Answers. Qualifying low-income households in Illinois can get help paying their energy costs.
- The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). Administered by the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, LIHEAP is designed to help eligible low-income households pay for winter energy service.
- ComEd CARE Programs. ComEd’s programs provide financial assistance on electric bills for qualified customers.
- Warm Neighbors Cool Friends. This Energy Assistance Foundation program provides year-round energy bill payment assistance and home weatherization to make harsh winters and hot summers bearable for families in need. Eligible households can receive up to $700 a year to help pay for energy costs ($350 during the heating season and $350 during the cooling season.)
- Ameren Payment Assistance. Ameren Illinois offers several forms of financial assistance, including short-term, one-time payment extensions and fixed monthly payment agreements to settle past balances.
Democratize ComEd Resource Collection
- Illinois Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program
- ComEd’s “Helping Hands”
- ComEd 1 time $500 grants
- Shut off halt rules during COVID
Several utilities offer energy assessments in which experts will install water- and energy-efficient items, such as faucet aerators, light bulbs, and a low-flow showerhead, for free (Peoples Gas/ North Shore Gas, ComEd, Nicor Gas)
- EEC's Home Sustainability Page
- Resource guide: greening your home
- Ready for 100 Chicago Collective
- Democratize ComEd
- Elevate Energy
- ComEd Smart Meter Online Management Tools
- ComEd Peak Time Savings
- ComEd Hourly Pricing Program
- Citizens Utility Board
- Environmental Protection Agency
- Illinois Environmental Council