The Power is in Your Hands!

Release Date: Tuesday, December 13, 2005

‘Power is in Your Hands’ Campaign Empowers Consumers To Ease Record Winter Energy Bills with Energy Efficiency

Washington, D.C., December 13, 2005 – As U.S. households face heating bills averaging 25 percent higher than last year’s, a broad-based coalition today launched The Power is in Your Hands campaign to empower consumers to lower those bills with energy efficiency. Led by the Alliance to Save Energy and the American Gas Association, the campaign brings together business, industry, utilities, trade associations, federal agencies, and community groups whose common goal is to reduce energy use in order to lower prices in the long run. The coalition’s 20-plus members include the U.S. Department of Energy, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, The Dow Chemical Company, the North American Insulation Manufacturers Association, and the Edison Electric Institute.

The campaign will arm consumers with the information and tools they need to manage their home energy bills; inform them about the connection between household energy use and energy prices; and inspire them to use energy efficiency to reduce their energy use and thereby enhance the nation’s energy security.

“The power to save energy and money is in the hands of each and every consumer in the U.S. Even small actions by large numbers of people add up to significant energy and monetary savings,” said Alliance President Kateri Callahan. “Energy efficiency remains the quickest, cheapest, cleanest way to help consumers lower their home energy bills, extend our nation’s energy supplies, and bring down energy costs for all of us.”

Today’s news conference unveiled a new consumer booklet with a wealth of energy-saving tips, a laminated card for keeping key tips within easy reach, and a new website,, with resources, tools, and links to more information from campaign partners. The campaign will include additional consumer materials as well as TV and radio media tours, several local media tours, and placement of print ads in key markets.

“Energy efficiency feels good and saves money, and we join the Alliance to Save Energy in calling on all Americans to band together and save energy and money this winter,” said Peter Molinaro, vice president, government affairs, The Dow Chemical Company. “Since 1995, Dow has saved more than $3 billion through energy efficiency improvements. If every homeowner could save $300 – or even $30 – what a contribution we could collectively make to America’s energy independence.”

“There are plenty of simple steps consumers can take to lower their home heating bills this winter, from adding weather stripping, to checking the efficiency of their furnaces, or leveling out their winter bills by signing up with the local utility for a level payment program,” said David N. Parker, president and CEO of the American Gas Association. “In fact, as a result of these kinds of consumer actions and improved appliance efficiency, the average home actually uses 22 percent less natural gas today than in the 1980s.”

“Taking steps now to use energy more efficiently will not only provide savings for consumers, but will reduce our dependence on foreign sources of energy,” said David K. Garman, under secretary for the Department of Energy. “Together, our combined efforts to reduce energy consumption can ease the burden of increased energy prices in the short run and increase energy security down the road.”

“Winter has arrived, and there is no better time to improve the comfort and energy efficiency of our homes,” said Bill Wehrum, assistant administrator for Air and Radiation, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). “EPA encourages people to look for the government’s ENERGY STAR when shopping for products and services. Not only can Americans save up to 30 percent on their energy bills, but together we can protect our environment.”

“This coalition brings together a broad group of energy-efficiency advocates that are all focused on helping Americans take immediate and specific actions to save energy,” said Kenneth D. Mentzer, president and CEO of the North American Insulation Manufacturers Association. “With prices escalating and the availability of federal tax credits for making energy-efficiency improvements, there is no better time than now for this group to work as a team toward making a difference.”

“EEI is very pleased to participate in this important outreach campaign, which we believe will help equip customers with tools to save money on their energy bills this winter while also promoting the urgent need for energy efficiency and conservation nationwide,” said EEI President Tom Kuhn.