You will soon receive small box from Adams Electric delivered by your mail carrier; others will be receiving it soon. Inside, there are four free, Energy Star-certified, 60-watt equivalent, light-emitting diode (LED) lightbulbs. That’s right – the bulbs are free, compliments of us! The LED bulbs are part of an electric cooperative energy efficiency program underway across Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
Lighting technology has advanced so rapidly that the installation of each of these LED bulbs is expected to save you $6.22 per year or more than $140 in electricity costs over the life of the bulb (estimated to be about 23 years at average use). That’s because an LED bulb improves lighting efficiency by 80 percent over traditional incandescent bulbs.
Eighty percent is a lot – enough of a difference that we are encouraging you to take an unusual step. As soon as you receive your free LED bulbs, select four of your most-used incandescent bulbs and replace them immediately with the new bulbs.
Most of us don’t spend a lot of time thinking about our lightbulbs, at least until one leaves us in the dark. But you will begin saving money the minute you install your new LED bulbs, and what could be better than installing free bulbs that shine brighter, last longer, and are less expensive to use than your current incandescent bulbs?
The benefits to the members of this lightbulb initiative are obvious, but you may wonder what benefit the cooperative gains from giving away lightbulbs to all members. The answer is that we purchase the electricity we provide to you – our members – from Allegheny Electric Cooperative, Inc. (Allegheny), a Harrisburg-based cooperative owned by the 14 distribution cooperatives in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Allegheny owns a hydroelectric plant and 10 percent of a nuclear power plant, and together with some long-term hydropower contracts, these sources provide about two-thirds of the power needed for the cooperatives. The remainder is purchased on the open market, where the price can fluctuate significantly.
When cooperative members across the two states install the new LED bulbs, it will reduce the amount of power Allegheny must purchase from the open market, which in turn will ultimately decrease costs for local cooperatives. Adams will pass those savings along to our members through a lower rate than would otherwise be possible.