Energy usage survey launched

What is the primary heating system in your house? What type of water heater do you have? What type of air conditioning do you have and how old is it?
These are just a few of the questions the Fort Frances Power Corp. wants its customers to answer during a survey it is conducting this month.
“The purpose of this survey is two-fold,” FFPC CEO Jim Kibiuk explained yesterday. “One, every utility in the province has been mandated by the Ontario Energy Board to develop what they’re calling a utility-specific customer load profile.
“What a load profile is is we have to take our customers in the different classes and profile how they’re consuming their energy, their electricity,” he added.
“In order to understand our residential customers, we’re required to do this appliance saturation survey. What the survey does is tells us what they actually have in their houses.
“Whether they have a gas hot water tank or electric. Whether they have electric heat or gas heat. How many refrigerators they have.
“By being able to know what they have in their house, and what they’re using, basically we’ll be able to tell their energy requirements not only today, but as we go forward,” noted Kibiuk.
The second reason for the survey is for the FFPC to fine-tune its conservation efforts.
“What we want to understand is what people are already doing as far as energy conservation—whether they’ve done retrofits or have some Energy Star appliances in their homes,” said Kibiuk.
“And we also want to know how they want to see their conservation information delivered in the future—through advertising or through billing inserts?” he added. “Whether they want to see conservation information on compact fluorescents, LEDs, and so on.
“Help us understand what our customers would like to see out there, and then we can gear our conservation information towards that direction.”
Kibiuk said FFPC customers can complete the survey on-line on a site designed by the Times’ web design division.
“It’s a very easy survey to maneuver through,” he added, noting the site can be found at www.fort-frances.com/ffpc/
Customers also can pick up surveys at the FFPC office (downstairs at the Civic Centre), have a survey mailed to you (by calling the FFPC at 274-9291), or by participating in a phone survey which soon will get underway.
Kibiuk noted the phone survey is being conducted by a team consisting of two local high school students, who will be calling all FFPC customers.
He highly encouraged everyone who doesn’t fill out the survey otherwise should take a little time out and participate in the telephone one.
“We want people to know the survey is being done locally, by local people for the local utility for local purposes,” stressed Kibiuk, adding that in a time where people screen their phone calls for solicitors, this is one call local residents should pick up.
The survey only takes about five-seven minutes to complete, noted Kibiuk.
“The toughest question on the survey is how many light bulbs do you have in your house,” he remarked.
Anybody who completes the survey in any of its forms will be entered in a draw to win up to $1,000 in Energy Star appliances. The draw will be made Sept. 6.
The information gathered from customers by this survey will be used only for research purposes and for administration of the contest, and will not be disclosed for any other purpose except as permitted or required by law.
In related news, Kibiuk noted LED traffic lights are on order and should be installed in coming weeks.
“There’s going to be some big energy savings for the town,” he said.

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