Local Nonprofit Switches to LEDs to Save

Ice Age Trail Alliance takes advantage of energy-saving incentive.

Developing, building and maintaining a 1,000-mile hiking trail undoubtedly requires a concentrated focus on sustainability In January, staff at the Ice Age Trail Alliance gave their conservation efforts an added boost by switching to energy-saving LED technology  at their Cross Plains office.

Mike Wollmer, executive director of the Ice Age Trail Alliance, has an office now lit with energy-saving LED bulbs.
(Courtesy: Ice Age Trail Alliance)

Mike Wollmer, executive director of the Ice Age Trail Alliance, has an office now lit with energy-saving LED bulbs. (Courtesy: Ice Age Trail Alliance)

MGE and Focus on Energy partnered with Nelson Electric to replace the office's aging 32-watt fluorescent lamps with 54 LED tube bulbs. A $2,240 incentive from Focus, Wisconsin's energy efficiency and renewable energy program, helped to make the improvements more feasible for the Alliance.

More efficient, longer lasting

LED bulbs use up to 75% less energy than standard incandescent bulbs and last 15 to 25 times longer. Switching to LEDs is expected to save the Alliance an estimated 2.9 kilowatts (7,843 kilowatt hours) of electricity in the first year, thereby reducing its energy costs. The upgrades also will help the group meet its sustainability goals by reducing the equivalent amount of carbon annually sequestered by 7 acres of Wisconsin forest, according to Focus.

Energy efficiency is widely recognized as a key, long-term strategy for reducing carbon emissions. If we all work together to conserve and be energy efficient, we can collectively make an impact to improve our environment.

Courtesy: Ice Age Trail Alliance

Courtesy: Ice Age Trail Alliance

Small business incentive program

MGE and Focus partnered to promote the organization's Small Business Incentive program. A total of eight small businesses in Cross Plains applied for incentives through Focus as a result.

"We know how hard it is to run a business," said Jillian Page, an account representative in MGE's Commercial and Industrial Marketing Department. "We work closely with our business customers—from large companies to smaller, family-owned businesses—to help them lower their energy costs. The savings generated can then be put right back into the business to hire more people or to expand, and to stay in our community and continue to be successful."

published: Mar-12-2018