Consumers Going for Energy Rebatesby Staff
CBS MarketWatch, August 18, 2001
SAN FRANCISCO (CBS.MW) -- Pacific Gas & Electric Co. said that its customers are going for energy efficient appliances in light of the Golden State's crushing energy crisis.
To help curb demand during a time of insufficient power supply, the embattled utility said that its own rebate program is having a substantial impact on consumer buying interest and energy use. The purchase so far of about 80,000 appliances and 2.1 million efficient fluorescent light bulbs should save about 50 megawatts a year. That's the equivalent, the company said, of the amount of power produced at a small plant.
The customer rebates range from $3 per light bulb to up to $200 for a refrigerator. In 2001, there have been 10,195 dishwashers sold, a 30 percent rise over 1999; and 15,189 washing machines, a 75 percent increase over last year.
"This has been a record setting year for our rebate program," said Steve McCarty, PG&E's director of customer energy management.
Shares of PG&E Corp., whose utility filed for bankruptcy protection in April, have bounced back from a 52-week low of $6.50 on April 9. On Friday, shares ended the day up 1 cent to $16.07.
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