Energy Smart receives three years of fundingXcel Energy will give three more years of funding to Energy Smart, a one-year-old program that helps Minnesota businesses take advantage of financial incentives for being energy efficient.
Xcel Energy will give three more years of funding to Energy Smart, a one-year-old program that helps Minnesota businesses take advantage of financial incentives for being energy efficient.
The funding plan was recently approved by the Minnesota Office of Energy Security and took effect Jan. 1.
Energy Smart is run through the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce's Waste Wise program. It started as a pilot in 2008. Its first year was funded by four investor-owned utilities.
Continued funding by Xcel Energy will allow Energy Smart to assist a far greater number of businesses that need help navigating the web of energy-efficiency incentives, such as rebates, low-interest loans and grants, available to them.
Energy Smart provides its assistance to Minnesota businesses at no charge, regardless of energy utility.
"Saving energy is smart business," said Mark Blaiser, executive director of Minnesota Waste Wise and Energy Smart. "Our team is helping small and midsize businesses that are overworked and understaffed save time and money."
Energy Smart directly contacted more than 5,000 businesses, most of which were not aware of the opportunities for energy cost-savings.
Energy Smart is seeking additional funding from the rest of the state's energy utilities to reflect its statewide service.
For further information about the program, businesses may contact Jill Curran, Energy Smart program manager, at (651) 292-4653 or