Small business

If you own and operate a business in Chicagoland, you likely fall into the Small Business Energy Efficiency Program, small business grants or rebates as a benefit that is available to all commercial customers. This program is one slice of the greater ComEd Energy Efficiency Program in Illinois and is designed to help businesses move forward with efficiency improvements through rebates and incentives.

First – why would ComEd share rebates with businesses to help them use less energy? Isn’t that against their business model since they get paid for the electricity we use? While that is true that ComEd benefits from the greater amount of electricity that we use financially, they are also required by theFuture Energy Jobs Act law to spend a significant amount of money annually on energy efficiency. Since 2007, Illinois has been collecting a tax on each residential, commercial, and public sector’s electric bill and spending that on energy efficiency.

ComEd, like most utilities, differentiates commercial customers by the amount of electricity drawn at any one instant. Unlike a kWh (kilowatt-hour), they do this by kW (kilowatt). I imagine this helps them stabilize the grid by understanding how many businesses are drawing large amounts of power at any instant, although this classification may have less importance today with the advent of the smart meter.

For commercial customers that are classified as Small Business (0-100 kW), they are eligible for the Small Business Energy Savings Program. Since this classification is about how much energy is drawn, and not how much revenue is earned – this can lead to very large businesses qualifying for this program (so the name can be misleading). Here is a list of likely candidates that will qualify for the 0-100 kW classification, but the only way to really know is to check on your utility bill.

This program has been designed to really encourage businesses to move forward with energy efficiency, with very generous incentives. I like to think of it as designed for organizations that do not have a person dedicated to evaluating investments to see if they make sense to move forward.

Target and Walmart likely has a whole team dedicated to evaluating LED lighting for their parking lots, stores, and thinking about how that investment can benefit the company. A small business does not – it usually has an owner that is stretched thin and makes most decisions. With large incentives that cover huge portions of the cost, it can make moving forward with energy efficiency a “no-brainer”.

The core offering of this program is a $.70 per watt reduced incentive on LED conversions.For example, a 4 lamp 4 ft T12 troffer is considered to have 164 watts in energy usage. If you install a 36 watt LED fixtures in its place, your incentive would be 164 – 36 = 128 * $.70 per watt reduced = $89.6 of incentive.Outdoor lighting rebates are actually stronger, at $.80 per watt reduced on LED conversions. In addition, they offer incentives on occupancy sensors, photocells, and advanced lighting controls.

However, once you get past lighting, the program actually gets more interesting.

Refrigeration is a common energy hog for restaurants. The program incentivizes EC motor upgrades, as well as evaporative fan speed controls – which only make that fan run when the evaporative cooler is calling for cooling. This can combine to improve the efficiency on a shaded pole motor by 90%.

HVAC incentives are also very popular in this program, and there are incentives of up to $600 per ton to encourage folks to take their current rooftop HVAC unit and upgrade to a CEE tier 2 energy efficiency RTU. Since our most commonly replaced units are 10 tons, that is $6,000 on incentive.

A few products can be provided to the customer at no cost, and those are the following:

If you have not participated in this program before, it might be because it sounds too good to be true. Well, as an active trade ally for the past 5 years – I can assure you that it is true. In fact, I can assure you that your neighboring businesses have participated and even your competitors. Yes – your competitors might be using less electricity and having a competitive advantage over you!

One caveat – this program is run through a closed network of trade allies. You must work with one of these highly trained partners in order to receive these very generous incentives.

How do you find one of those partners? You already have – just give us a call at (773) 413-9587, or click the link below.

Med to large businesses

Commercial energy efficiency improvements are a core pillar of the ComEd Energy Efficiency Program in Illinois.  All businesses and public sector programs are available to participate in the Standard Program for energy efficiency program.  

While businesses that are rated 0-100 kW are eligible for their own programs for small business and small facilities public sector, they are also able to participate in the standard program for business energy efficiency if they prefer.  

The Standard program is very versatile and does not require the usage of an ICC Certified Trade Ally to install the product. However, it might be helpful to purchase your products through an Instant Discount distributor such as Verde Energy Efficiency Experts to make sure the products you are installing are Design Light Consortium approved, as are often required for the incentives.   

This program’s incentives, while lower than those targeting smaller facilities, are targeted toward larger facilities that often have a dedicated person to maintain supervision and staff on hand to replace lighting fixtures and advanced controls.  

2018 Highlights of the Program include:

Lighting

  • $.40 per watt reduced incentives for LED lighting, including Type C Tube and Driver installation
  • $ .18 per watt controlled daylighting plus occupancy controlled sensors
  • Made in Illinois bonus of 10% on any fixture that is at least 50% manufactured and/or assembled in Illinois
  • Opportunities for higher incentives for advanced lighting controls scenarios

Refrigeration

  • $4 incentive per square foot walk-in cooler and freezer strip curtains
  • $60 incentive per EC Motor installed in walk-in cooler and freezers
  • $90 incentive per EC Motor installed with evaporative fan speed controls for walk-in cooler and freezers
  • $100 incentive per beverage machine controls

HVAC

  • $50 per ton of new rooftop HVAC unit installed
  • $50 per ton controlled of economizer installed
  • $10 per bathroom exhaust fan sensor installed
  • $40-$75 per HP controlled Variable Speed Fan

Compressed Air

  • $20 incentive per high-efficiency air nozzle
  • $100 incentive per no loss condensate drain
  • $75 per HP – Integrated VSD on a new air compressor

Want to know your specific eligibility and where you can save energy?  Hit us up and schedule a free energy efficiency walkthrough, which will share a customized report with all of your eligible ComEd rebates.

Public Sector

Commercial energy efficiency improvements are a core pillar of the ComEd Energy Efficiency Program in Illinois.  All businesses and public sector programs are available to participate in the Standard Program for energy efficiency program.  

While businesses that are rated 0-100 kW are eligible for their own programs for small business and small facilities public sector, they are also able to participate in the standard program for business energy efficiency if they prefer.  

The Standard program is very versatile and does not require the usage of an ICC Certified Trade Ally to install the product. However, it might be helpful to purchase your products through an Instant Discount distributor such as Verde Energy Efficiency Experts to make sure the products you are installing are Design Light Consortium approved, as are often required for the incentives.   

This program’s incentives, while lower than those targeting smaller facilities, are targeted toward larger facilities that often have a dedicated person to maintain supervision and staff on hand to replace lighting fixtures and advanced controls.  

2018 Highlights of the Program include:

Lighting

  • $.40 per watt reduced incentives for LED lighting, including Type C Tube and Driver installation
  • $ .18 per watt controlled daylighting plus occupancy controlled sensors
  • Made in Illinois bonus of 10% on any fixture that is at least 50% manufactured and/or assembled in Illinois
  • Opportunities for higher incentives for advanced lighting controls scenarios

Refrigeration

  • $4 incentive per square foot walk-in cooler and freezer strip curtains
  • $60 incentive per EC Motor installed in walk-in cooler and freezers
  • $90 incentive per EC Motor installed with evaporative fan speed controls for walk-in cooler and freezers
  • $100 incentive per beverage machine controls

HVAC

  • $50 per ton of new rooftop HVAC unit installed
  • $50 per ton controlled of economizer installed
  • $10 per bathroom exhaust fan sensor installed
  • $40-$75 per HP controlled Variable Speed Fan

Compressed Air

  • $20 incentive per high-efficiency air nozzle
  • $100 incentive per no loss condensate drain
  • $75 per HP – Integrated VSD on a new air compressor

Want to know your specific eligibility and where you can save energy?  Hit us up and schedule a free energy efficiency walkthrough, which will share a customized report with all of your eligible ComEd rebates.

Multi Family

In 2017, Franklin Energy administers the pilot “Multi-family Energy Savings Program” to focus on reducing energy in the Multi-family building space in Chicagoland.  This program is one of the rare partnerships between electric (ComEd) and gas companies (People’s Gas and North Shore Gas) in Chicagoland, and is an important pillar of the ComEd Energy Efficiency Program.  Due to the overwhelming success of the multifamily energy efficiency pilot program among property managers, Trade Allies, and proven energy savings, this program is back for 2018 and expanded in scale and impact.

According to the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE), comprehensive, cost-effective upgrades in multifamily buildings can improve efficiency by 15-30% , representing an annual sector-wide savings of almost $3.4 billion.

The Multi-Family Program is broken into two categories – market rate and Income Eligible.  For this comprehensive program to work, the program must have access to within the units for the entire building to upgrade.  Need some help from one of our energy efficiency analysts to help engage your building – hit us up!

Market Rate Multi-Family Program

Market Rate applies to any building that is non specifically subsidizing low-income residents.  This would include all condominium buildings, as well as apartments that are market rate for their tenants.  Often, the property manager or a condo board member is the right person to contact Verde about this program.

Income Eligible

Income eligible, or low-income, are multi-family buildings that serve tenants that are low income.  These buildings are not necessarily located in a certain geography, but instead have a focus on providing subsidized rent or services specifically for low income populations in Chicagoland.  Property owners or managers are the best contacts for this, and we partner with Elevate Energy to deliver this ComEd rebate. 

Program Specifics

This program combines energy efficiency improvements in the common areas of multi-family buildings with the opportunities available in the apartments or condominiums in the building and may include:>

In-Unit Offerings

  • ENERGY STAR® certified LEDs
  • Advanced power strip
  • Programmable thermostats
  • WaterSense® certified shower heads
  • Faucet aerators for bathrooms and kitchens
  • Hot water pipe insulation

Common Area Offerings

  • ENERGY STAR® certified LEDs
  • TLED lighting
  • Exterior and garage LEDs
  • Programmable thermostats
  • LED exit signs
  • Occupancy sensors

Houses of worship/Non profits

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