H.E.L.P. ING KEEP THE POWER IN THE HANDS OF THE PEOPLE.
EEtility’s business and revenue model is based on the success of each program that we implement. Using a “pay for performance” approach, EEtility’s revenue stream is purposely derived from its demonstrated success — one member at a time. Because our success depends on high retrofit conversion rates and long lasting energy savings, EEtility cannot afford for programs to underachieve. This means that EEtility is encouraged to work only with Co-ops that are dedicted to having true and impactful results.
EEtility currently serves as a program operator for multiple electric cooperatives in Arkansas for a successful energy efficiency on-bill financing program they call HELP. EEtility created HELP as an on-bill lending program to address the barrier of upfront costs that prevented cost-effective investments in energy efficiency among people who lack access to low cost capital. HELP features best practices in implementation from customer engagement all the way through to evaluation, monitoring & verification.
EEtility's objectives for residential energy efficiency for the already built environment are far reaching. Successful program implementation processes and procedures that EEtility demonstrates in Arkansas can be adapted to fit specific goals and objectives for any co-op regardless of where they are in the country.
Utilizing EEtility's expertise, participating co-op members are first provided a comprehensive energy assessment to reveal the issues that contribute to their homes energy loss. Once the assessment is complete, costs for only the most cost effective work are calculated and potential energy savings analyzed using the member’s prior 12 month utility usage history. If available, the member’s energy habits and demand patterns are analyzed as well using smart meter accessible data. From this wealth of information, EEtility experts then create a concise report that itemizes suggested upgrades, calculates respective costs, and estimates correlating energy savings in the (now finished) report. EEtitlity representatives then discuss this report with the member via phone consultation and "stay with" the member until their decision to move ahead (or not) is decided.
The cost of the retrofit is first paid by the co-op and then cost recovery is slowly collected back by the co-op through the members monthly utility bill. This process allows for the post retrofit energy savings to be used to pay the co-op back. By allowing for costs to be recovered this way the member generally experiences no out of pocket costs for the work. When basic weatherization upgrades are combined with Heating, Ventalization and Air Conditioning, ("HVAC") upgrades:
"most members experience a 40% decrease in their annual energy usage"
The Co-ops investment is secured using State provided Loss Reserve dollars set aside specifically for cases of loan default.
Recommended energy efficient upgrades are performed and quality is controlled by EEtility to ensure only the most cost effective strategies are installed in the manner that will make them last. Once the work is complete, trained and certified representatives of the co-op inspect the work before payment to the contractor is made. EEtility applies high workforce performance standards as the basis for rigorous quality assurance. Contracting entities and their field staff are essential members of the program’s Network of Service Providers. On-the-job certifications and ongoing field support for all Network Service Providers are available through the RESNET JobWerks platform. Education and mentoring is extensively integrated into JobWerks, which provides on-the-job training, live field support, quality assurance and quality control management, report generation, and stakeholder access to data, all recorded in the cloud. EEtility and/or designated party will keep current copies on file of licenses and insurance documentation for all Service Providers.
Since most Co-op revenue streams typically are derived from the distribution of power, most co-ops buy their power elsewhere and often from other States. In fact, if a residential energy efficient program can suceed at scale throughout a co-ops territory, money once going to distant power plants can stay in local economies. But the benefits of energy efficiency don't stop at financial. These now more affordable homes are also more comfortable and healthier to live in. Simply put, an energy efficiency "intervention" makes members and communities a happier place to thrive- a corner stone tentament of any cooperative mentality.
The growing list of HELP participating coops in Arkansas currently include:
Ouachita Electric Cooperative
Ozarks Electric Cooperative
Arkansas Valley Electric Cooperative
Craighead Electric Cooperative
Woodruff Electric Cooperative