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Round up your bill to help keep your neighbors warm We’ve had record high temperatures this winter, but some of our neighbors are having a hard time keeping their homes warm and paying for their household energy costs. In a slow economy, your donations to the Salvation Army’s HeatShare program are even more appreciated. The Salvation Army gathers voluntary contributions from Minnesota Power customers who “round up” their monthly bills to the next dollar. Our customers generously donated $15,954 to the program last year. In addition to customer generosity, the Minnesota Power Foundation has donated $50,000 to the 2012 HeatShare program. The donation includes an $8,000 foundation match for every customer that signed up to be a part of the Power of One® Choice Pilot Program, one of our energy conservation efforts. To learn more about HeatShare and how you can help, call (800) 228-4966.

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Your Powerful Partner

At Minnesota Power, we fuel the pace of life. We create and deliver the safe, reliable and affordable energy you need to keep the lights on and warm your home, and to power the tools businesses use to get the job done. Through significant investments in wind and hydro, Minnesota Power is answering the call to deliver a sustainable energy future.

Most power line right-of-way is private land Minnesota Power maintains about 7,500 miles of power line right-of-way throughout northern and central Minnesota, and most of it is owned by private parties. Minnesota Power has been granted rights permitting the electric line to be constructed and maintained on the private land. Because of this, rights-of-way are not public thoroughfares. If you make use of rights-of-way for recreational purposes such as snowmobiling, hunting, or all-terrain vehicle riding, you must first obtain the landowner’s permission. Failure to get permission from the landowner can be considered trespassing.

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Do you generate your own electricity? The Minnesota Public Utilities Commission (MPUC) requires Minnesota Power to buy all electric energy that qualified facilities offer for sale. The rules apply to small power producers who use renewable resources and cogenerators who produce electricity and steam. Disputes that might arise over interconnections, sales or purchases of power will be resolved by the MPUC. You can obtain more information by contacting Minnesota Power at (800) 228-4966.

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Conservation team helps guide two high-profile building projects Minnesota Power’s Conservation Improvement Program played a leading role in the recent LEED certification process involving two high-profile Duluth buildings. LEED stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design and signifies that a building’s design and operation maximizes performance and sustainability. In November 2011, officials at the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center announced that Amsoil Arena had earned LEED certification. Minnesota Power’s CIP team worked with the DECC to help implement many of the arena’s energy-conserving concepts, including induction lighting in the parking lot. CIP also worked with the University of Minnesota Duluth on the construction of Ianni Hall, a 280-student residence hall that opened last fall. UMD Chancellor Lynn Black said the dorm, which he expects will earn LEED certification, already has saved energy and money

through innovations such as lighting controls and variable frequency drives. The building is expected to save 470,000 kilowatt-hours of electricity each year, avoiding emissions of more than 340 tons of greenhouse gases. UMD received a check for $18,183 in rebates earned through Minnesota Power’s Power of One® program. Over the past decade, UMD has implemented dozens of measures resulting in nearly 12,000,000 kWh in savings and earning close to $500,000 in rebates. That’s the equivalent of more than 2,000 cars off the road or powering more than 1,000 homes. “Energy efficiency is not only the responsible thing to do, it sets an example that will resonate for years,” said Tina Koecher, Minnesota Power manager for billing and energy. To learn more about how Minnesota Power helps businesses discover energy savings, visit the Power of One® at

Myths about the “Light Bulb Law” Myth #1: The government is banning incandescent light bulbs and forcing you to buy CFLs. This is the first myth about the Energy Independence and Security Act (EISA), sometimes called the light bulb law, which went into effect in January. The law doesn’t eliminate incandescent light bulbs but does require that they be more energy efficient. Standard incandescent bulbs, which produce 10% light and 90% heat, don’t meet the new standards. Starting in 2012, the typical 100-watt light bulb will no longer be manufactured; standard 75-watt and 60-watt bulbs won’t be manufactured beginning in 2013 and 2014, respectively. However, halogen incandescent bulbs, which are more energy-efficient versions of the familiar standard incandescent, along with specialty light bulbs, such as three-way, reflector and appliance bulbs, will continue to be available. A growing variety of CFLs and LED replacement bulbs will also be on store shelves. Visit us at for more information on the new law and how to shop for the right bulb. Myth #2: You’ll lose money with the new light bulbs. The Federal Trade Commission requires a new label on all light bulb packages that clearly shows a measure of brightness (Lumens), projected bulb life, light appearance (Kelvins) and estimated annual energy cost. This will enable shoppers to find a light that fits their needs. Look at the Lighting Facts label on each bulb box and you’ll realize that CFLs and LEDs are equally bright, come in warm colors and cost less to operate than standard incandescent bulbs. Because lighting represents 10%–12% of a typical home’s electric usage, the new law will help reduce on a large scale. Visit us at for more information on energy efficient CFLs and LEDs. Myth #3: You don’t need to look for the ENERGY STAR® label on the bulb package anymore. It’s still important to look for the ENERGY STAR® designation when buying bulbs. Other bulbs may cost less, but the tests that ENERGY STAR® requires ensure that consumers get the performance they expect. Visit for a list of utility rebates on ENERGY STAR® lighting. Don't be misled by these myths. EISA will help ensure you get the right bulb for the right job with the right performance.

22nd Annual Energy Design Conference & Expo Duluth, MN General Conference: February 21–22, 2012 Duluth Entertainment Convention Center (DECC) For more information on the conference or to register, visit

Lights Out: 1.800.30.POWER (1.800.307.6937)

Winter 2012  

Minnesota Power Energizer newsletter Winter 2012