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Austin Energy May Offer Energy Efficiency Rebates

The Austin Business Journal is reporting that Austin Energy is making an effort to help energy efficiency by raising the maximum annual rebate for commercial and residential customers.  The proposal calls for an increase of 33%.

It is now up to the Austin city council to approve the plan, which will allow for between $200,000 and $300,000 in yearly rebates.

The move would allow commercial and multifamily customers to make energy efficiency upgrades, and could save Austin Energy money by reducing the need to build more energy generation facilities.

“It’s much less expensive to incentivize energy savings than to acquire new resources to serve customers,” said Debbie Kimberly of Austin Energy. She also says that including multifamily customers with large properties “can very easily bump up against the $200,000 cap.”

In the last fiscal year, Austin Energy’s rebate program paid out about $2.5 million and worked on multifamily residences with a total of 8,000 occupants, Kimberly said. The improvements made helped to reduce demand by about 5 megawatts.

By raising the cap, Austin Energy hopes to allow customers to tackle renovations to chilling systems as well as encourage new buildings to include more energy efficient options.

City Council will vote on increasing the maximum rebate at its upcoming June 26 meeting.

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