COLLINSVILLE, IL (November 26, 2021) – Ameren Illinois' success re-tooling a popular energy efficiency program to assist underserved customer populations earned the company recognition as Region III Innovative Energy Project of the Year by the Association of Energy Engineers (AEE). During the height of the pandemic in 2020, Ameren Illinois delivered low or no-cost energy-savings services to 8,500 income qualified customers, enabling those customers to cut their energy bills and stay comfortable while sheltering-in-place.
Pivoting away from conducting in-home energy assessments during the pandemic, Ameren Illinois created Safe and Virtual Energy Efficiency (SAVE) kits that contain energy saving LED bulbs, faucet aerators and advanced power strips. The SAVE initiative offered cash incentives to encourage customers to complete a virtually assisted installation of energy saving measures, including HVAC equipment and insulation. Customers who attended a webinar on how to install their energy-saving equipment received a $75 cash incentive. A $150 cash incentive was provided to those who completed a one-on-one assessment with an Energy Advisor using video conferencing tools. With this option, an Energy Advisor provided installation guidance on SAVE kit equipment and conducted a virtual “walk-through” of the home to identify additional energy-saving opportunities.
"The limitations on in-person consultations and the immense economic and social challenges faced by our customers meant we had to get creative quickly," said Kristol Simms, Sr. Director, Energy Efficiency & Regulatory Policy Implementation for Ameren Illinois. "I'm proud of our team for developing a virtual offering and delivering energy saving services to customers who needed our help the most."
Through its virtual assessments and SAVE kit offering, Ameren Illinois served more than 8,500 income qualified customers between June and December 2020. These projects helped participating customers reduce their monthly utility bill and resulted in energy savings equivalent to the total amount of energy used by 582 homes.
"Our mantra is to go beyond traditional program offerings and provide 'Energy Efficiency for All,' which means eliminating barriers to participation in these programs for traditionally underserved populations," said Richard Mark, Chairman and President, Ameren Illinois. "This was especially challenging during the pandemic, so to have our efforts recognized and validated by AEE is very rewarding."
The Energy Project of the Year award was presented during a ceremony at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center in New Orleans on October 19. A complete listing of AEE award recipients can be found at aeecenter.org/regional-awards.
For more information on Ameren Illinois' award-winning Energy Efficiency Program, visit AmerenIllinoisSavings.com.
About Ameren Illinois
Ameren Illinois delivers energy to 1.2 million electric and more than 800,000 natural gas customers in Illinois. Our mission is to power the quality of life. Our service territory covers more than 1,200 communities and 43,700 square miles. For more information, visit AmerenIllinois.com, find us on Twitter @AmerenIllinois or Facebook
The Association of Energy Engineers® (AEE®), founded in 1977 by Albert Thumann, is a nonprofit professional society of over 18,000 members in more than 100 countries. The mission of AEE is “to promote the scientific and educational interests of those engaged in the energy industry and to foster action for Sustainable Development.”