PSC OKs Programs to Promote Energy Efficiency, Conservation

The Arkansas Public Service Commission on Thursday approved five new electric and gas utility programs designed to promote energy efficiency and conservation.

The orders allow program implementation to begin Oct. 1 for Arkansas

Oklahoma Gas Co., CenterPoint Energy Arkansas, Southwestern Electric Power Co., Oklahoma Gas & Electric and Empire District Electric Co. and continue through 2009.

"All of Arkansas' investor-owned utilities have now been given the go-ahead to launch programs that can help customers reduce their utility bills by installing energy efficiency and conservation measures," said Paul Suskie, chairman of the PSC.

"From substituting compact fluorescent lamps for traditional light bulbs, to replacing air conditioners or furnaces with more efficient models, to tightening up homes and businesses with more insulation, caulking and weather stripping - all of these steps and more can provide an immediate reduction in monthly bills, and can also help to delay the need for costly new generation and transmission facilities," Suskie said. "Conservation also provides the added benefit of reducing environmental impacts associated with electric generation and transmission facilities and, by reducing consumption of natural gas, can being to put downward pressure on the cost of gas in the future."