Volunteers deliver $170,000 Worth of savings
in PowerWise Event
On Saturday, May 31, over 400 Moreno Valley families participated in the second PowerWise Torchiere Trade-In, held in the parking lot at City Hall. Directed by a team of green-shirted volunteer Explorers from the Moreno Valley Police Department, drive-through participants were met by other teams of volunteers from five different community groups who removed old halogen torchiere lamps from the vehicles and replaced them with boxes containing brand-new fluorescent lamps.
"We want to involve the community in smarter energy management," said event organizer and PowerWise coordinator Kevin Gaines, who is Management Analyst with the City of Moreno Valley. "This was a great example of how people can make the switch to better products to save money -- and in this case, to make their homes safer, too," he said.
Gaines estimates individual families will save around $250 for each lamp exchanged. Savings from the two Saturday trade-ins held over the past month will amount to well over $400,000 for the community. The savings come from two sources -- fluorescent lamps use only 20% as much energy as the halogen lamps being traded in, and because they generate less heat, they produce additional savings in air conditioning.
The safety factor is also key. Halogen lamps, which burn as hot as 1000 degrees, have been known to cause hundreds of house fires and many deaths. "Sure, we're saving energy today," said Ted Flanigan at the volunteer meeting held before the event. "But we may even save a life." Flanigan is Managing Director of The Energy Coalition, a non-profit organization working with the City in planning PowerWise activities.
The Energy Coalition invited Moreno Valley to participate in the Six Cities Energy Project, a larger project that brings city residents together in a number of ways to share good ideas and solutions for energy efficiency. The program has already sponsored a sale of discounted energy-efficient light bulbs and has plans for upcoming public workshops. Currently in Moreno Valley, over 1,000 mobile homes, apartments and condos in the "Sunnymead Energy District" (bounded by Frederick, Ironwood, Eucalyptus and Perris) are in the process of being "tuned-up" for energy efficiency. Residents and multi-family property owners or managers within the District are encouraged to sign up for the free service by calling Gaines at (909) 413-3037."Local communities must find ways to exercise more control over energy costs," says Gaines. "We're proud that PowerWise is already helping citizens save money and understand the value of long-term behavioral changes."