Letter: Aspen Utility on the right track

Councilman Adam Frisch’s dream of reducing energy use in Aspen is a vision that is well worth the city putting its weight behind (“City of Aspen rebates drive down energy use and revenue,” Oct. 25, The Aspen Times).

Energy efficiency provides a wide range of benefits. For individual home and business owners, it saves them money. For the local economy, it creates well-paying local jobs and can spur economic growth. And it helps the environment by reducing pollution associated with many forms of energy production.

Collectively, energy efficiency can even save money for those who don’t take advantage of home or business upgrades by reducing the collective need to build or buy more power generation as the community grows.

Clearly the City Council is doing more than talk about energy efficiency. Besides offering large incentives to local businesses, the strategic outreach that Aspen Utility is doing is a promising undertaking that goes beyond what typical utilities have done to help customers reduce energy. As the article demonstrates, the city is strategically targeting the energy load of its largest users. For a community to achieve comprehensive savings, utilities need to try these kinds of innovative targeting. An added benefit of this line of thinking is that as time passes and Aspen gains a further understanding of its business constituency, more specific programs can be developed to reduce energy use even more based on the needs of those businesses.

Aspen Utility is clearly on the right track and should continue its mission to proactively identify ways to reduce the energy footprint of the community.

Quinn Chasan

Associate, CoPIRG Energy Denver