KCP&L has asked to expand investment in energy saving options for low income customers and to offer all customers new innovative energy efficiency options and choices, including an online marketplace, smart home products and more low-cost business efficiency options. The programs were included in KCP&L's request Thursday for a continuation and expansion of its energy efficiency programs in Missouri with the Missouri Public Service Commission under the Missouri Energy Efficiency Investment Act (MEEIA). Energy saving options for low-income customers will be expanded with a $10 million investment.
"Customers often ask for more ways to manage their energy and save. We continually strive to be a customer-focused energy solutions provider and stay current with changing customer preferences and behaviors. The goal for our MEEIA programs is to offer more innovative and personalized energy efficiency products that give customers more choices to see which are right for them," said Chuck Caisley, senior vice president of public affairs, KCP&L. "We're excited for the opportunity to provide our customers the latest in energy efficiency products and programs while continuing our role as a leader in customer programs within the utility industry."
KCP&L was the first utility in Missouri to make a strong commitment to energy efficiency. Since 2012, KCP&L has offered almost two-dozen energy efficiency and demand response programs to residential and business customers under MEEIA in 3-year cycles. Today's filing marks KCP&L's third-cycle of MEEIA programs. During that time, KCP&L has worked with industry-leaders to offer innovative energy solutions, like the Nest thermostat. More than 260,000 residential customers and 4,000 business customers participated in the utility's initial energy efficiency programs. In 2016, KCP&L expanded its programs by offering discounts on LED light bulbs and rebates for insulation, heating and cooling systems and other customer energy savings solutions.
"As energy-efficiency products and programs continue to evolve, we want customers to look to KCP&L as their go-to energy solutions center," said Caisley. "Our experience helps us develop and deliver highly innovative and effective solutions that keep energy costs low for all customers."
Energy efficiency programs under MEEIA benefit all customers. For example, in previous offerings, for each dollar KCP&L invests in energy efficiency, a $2.58 benefit was created for customers. This provides for lower prices, even for customers who do not enroll in energy efficiency programs. Energy efficiency programs also provide more options for a wider range of customers, including families with tight budgets.
Investing in energy efficiency helps KCP&L grow a more sustainable energy future for the region, ensuring reliable electricity for generations to come. Energy efficiency allows KCP&L to retire power plants or delays the need to build additional plants, reducing costs. Additionally, KCP&L is also focused on renewable energy, meeting nearly half of the energy needs for homes and businesses with energy from zero-emission sources. Nearly one-third of the electricity produced by KCP&L will come from renewables, making the company one of the largest wind energy providers in the nation.
Located at 1710 Paseo Boulevard in Kansas City, Mo. KCP&L's energy solutions center offers a personalized, face-to-face customer experience not only for account support and assistance, but to help customers learn and decide which energy efficiency products are right for them. In addition, visitors can tour the Smart Energy Home Experience for a first-hand look at the most innovative energy savings ideas, products and technologies for their homes or businesses. The space will also host workshops and hands-on demonstrations of KCP&L's energy programs and rebates, teaching customers how they can save on their energy bill.