Second and final 2015 LED bulbs sale begins Monday; over 3,700 bulbs sold in March and April

Relight Mountain Village

Words by Nichole Zangara / Environment

Mountain Village announced today that it is offering its residents and business owners a second opportunity in 2015 to save money and energy by switching from inefficient light bulbs to new light-emitting diode technology (LEDs). In partnership with San Miguel Power Association (SMPA) and Cooperative Business Lighting Partners, the program Relight Mountain Village provides instant rebates and exclusive offers to those who purchase LEDs at greenlivingtown.com. The online order period begins June 15 and will run until midnight July 31. Program participants can expect to save up to 75 percent for each LED bulb they purchase.

“With many new community members participating in the program this year, we are confident that the pool of rebate money will run out before the end of the last order period,” observed Environmental Services Director Deanna Drew. “And it is not clear if SMPA will continue to offer their LED rebates in 2016, so now is the time to take advantage of this energy and cost-saving program.”

In an effort to reduce waste, bulbs will be delivered in bulk and available for pickup at Town Hall Plaza. Customers will be contacted via email regarding the specific date and time for this pickup event.

As for program rules, participants can order up to 50 common LEDs 300 lumens or greater per meter per year. This limitation ensures that everyone has the opportunity to change the environmental landscape and their monthly electricity bill for the better. Other types of bulbs such as tube lighting and bulbs less than 300 lumens have different rebate guidelines and amounts, which will be automatically calculated during the online ordering process.

Once LED bulbs are installed Drew suggests placing any unwanted incandescent light bulbs in the trash, but warns that fluorescent tubes and compact florescent bulbs contain mercury, a hazardous material that must be properly recycled or disposed of according to San Miguel County guidelines. For more details, visit lamptracker.com. One can also sell or donate their old bulbs and fixtures that still work.


2015 Relight Mountain Village Results

Once again, Relight Mountain Village has proven that the Mountain Village community cares about using energy wisely and is committed to reducing its overall energy demand. Following are the results from the 2015 winter LED bulb sale.

• Total town rebate amount: $11,258
• Total SMPA rebate amount: $22,561
• Total number of LED bulbs purchased: 3,761
• Total number of Mountain Village/SMPA customers: 63
• Total number of residential customers: 56
• Total number of commercial customers: 7
• Top three most popular LED bulbs: standard bulb (1), can lights (2), track lighting (3)
• Total amount of annual greenhouse gas emissions avoided: 107 metric tons of carbon dioxide
• Total number of trees saved: 21,786
• Total acres of trees planted: 52
• Total number of cars off the road: 16
• Total annual energy cost savings: $33,599
• Total annual energy usage reduction: 84% or 244,360 kilowatt hours
• Average pay back period after rebate: 5 months
Bight Lights, Big Profits in 2014

In 2014, all told, 94 residents and 27 business owners purchased over 4,800 LED bulbs through the Relight Mountain Village program. This translated to a four-month average pay back period and total annual energy cost savings of $71,362. The most popular LEDs purchased were can lights, standard bulbs, and dimmable table lamps and track lighting. Moreover, of the town’s $20,000 Relight Mountain Village rebate fund, $18,214 was applied at time of bulb purchase in addition to about $35,000 from the San Miguel Power Association rebate program.


Changing Landscape

Over the past few years the cost of LEDs has been steadily dropping while making immense gains in energy efficiency. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, lighting accounts for about 10 percent of a home’s electricity use. Since LEDs typically use 75- to 80-percent less energy than the traditional varieties, upgrading one’s lighting source is a step in the right direction, and most of the newer bulbs sold in the U.S. have longer life spans – more than 20 years – so a continual savings is realized well into the future. Moreover, the Environmental Protection Agency estimates that there are three billion incandescent bulbs currently in use. In other words, American households could collectively save $6 billion on energy costs in 2015 alone by making the switch to more energy-efficient lighting.

According to SMPA, results of switching to an energy-efficient light source like an LED are promising. For instance, if one were to replace 50 60-watt bulbs in their home that run an average of three hours each day, they would save about $30 each month on their electricity bill, making Relight Mountain Village truly a win-win for those who participate.

Mountain Village Mayor Dan Jansen couldn’t agree more.

“Earmarking funds for the energy reduction program Relight Mountain Village show not only the local government’s long-term commitment to being part of the solution, but also the commitment of our residents, business owners and electric power cooperative.”

Relight Mountain Village, a $20,000 funded program, is part of the town’s energy reduction strategy.