WASHINGTON – Today in Washington, D.C., CITGO Petroleum Corporation CEO Alejandro Granado, Citizens Energy Chairman Joseph P. Kennedy II and Ambassador of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela Bernardo Alvarez launched a national pilot program to provide low-income households with energy efficient and environmentally friendly compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs).
As with the low-income heating oil program inaugurated in 2005, this initiative is a partnership between CITGO, a wholly owned subsidiary of Petróleos de Venezuela (PDVSA), and the Boston-based nonprofit Citizen’s Energy Corporation. Together, CITGO and Citizen’s Energy will provide eligible households in Washington D.C. and ten other cities including Houston, Corpus Christi and Lake Charles with almost half a million CFLs. The initiative will also include education materials and workshops to help inform individuals about ways they can use energy more efficiently and in turn save on their electric bills.
Working with local community groups, the program will distribute light bulbs and energy conservation educational materials to approximately 23,000 households in the pilot cities. Qualified participants will participate in energy workshops sponsored by partner organizations. In total, the pilot program has the potential to save program participants nearly $15 million and reduce their energy use by 165 million kilowatt-hours. In Washington D.C., the program will target 1,500 households and distribute an estimated 30,000 CFLs throughout the summer and early fall.
“I am proud that CITGO invests over $100 million annually on social programs to improve the lives of those in need,” said CITGO Chairman, President and CEO, Alejandro Granado. “The CITGO-Venezuela Energy Efficient Lighting Program will save money for recipients who struggle to make ends meet while also helping these communities learn more about energy efficiency and environmental conservation.”
Simple energy-savings actions like those encouraged through this pilot program can make a big difference. According to the federal government, if every American home replaced just one light bulb with a CFL, the U.S. would save enough energy to light more than 3 million homes for a year, more than $600 million annual energy costs, and prevent greenhouse gases equivalent to the emissions of more than 800,000 cars.
“The most cost effective and clean energy is the energy we don’t use,” said Citizens Energy Chairman Joseph P. Kennedy II. “We are proud to partner with CITGO Petroleum to help our most vulnerable households learn ways to use energy more efficiently, and in doing so, save energy, money and the environment.”
The inspiration for the program came from a similar Venezuelan Government initiative called Misión Revolución Energética.
“This program is a counterpart to our efforts in Venezuela, where more than 60 million conventional light bulbs have been replaced by energy efficient ones through Misión Revolución Energética,” said Bernardo Alvarez, Ambassador to the United States for the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela. “It is also proof of CITGO’s commitment to social issues, which goes far beyond traditional corporate social responsibility, and of Venezuela’s commitment to a new progressive model of development to confront the problems of poverty and environmental damage.”