August 21, 2008

TEP's Energy Star(R) Lighting Program Cuts CFL Costs by up to 50 Percent

TUCSON, Ariz., Aug 21, 2008 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- A new Tucson Electric Power Company (TEP) program will make compact fluorescent light (CFL) bulbs available from local stores at discounts of up to 50 percent off of regular retail prices.

TEP's new Energy Star(R) Lighting Program is designed to encourage the use of energy-efficient CFL bulbs, which consume approximately 75 percent less energy than comparable incandescent bulbs and can last up to 10 times as long.

"TEP is making it even easier for our customers to conserve energy and reduce their monthly electric bills," said Philip Dion, vice president of Environmental and Legal Services for TEP and its parent company, UniSource Energy (NYSE: UNS). "By using CFL bulbs, our customers can save money while they help save the environment."

Although CFLs cost more than comparable incandescent bulbs, they generate energy savings worth up to $30 per bulb over their lifetime, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. TEP's Energy Star(R) Lighting Program makes CFLs even more cost-effective by reducing their price to as low as $1 per bulb.

Through the program, TEP has paid manufacturers to provide discounts that will be passed along through numerous local retailers. No coupons will be necessary, and customers can purchase up to 10 discounted bulbs per store visit. The program is funded by TEP customers through a monthly surcharge approved by the Arizona Corporation Commission.

TEP estimates that if all 185,000 bulbs available through the program this year are sold and installed, they will save more than 9.5 million kilowatt hours (kWh) of energy over the course of a year - enough to power more than 850 Tucson homes.

The discounted bulbs are available now at Costco and Home Depot stores in Tucson. Additional retailers will begin offering the discounted bulbs in coming weeks. To find participating retailers, customers can call toll-free at 800-783-7253 or visit tep.com.

Because CFL bulbs contain trace amounts of mercury, they should be handled carefully and disposed of properly through recycling facilities available at local Home Depot stores and other locations. To learn more about mercury and CFLs, visit tep.com or energystar.gov. For more information about local disposal options, visit earth911.org.

TEP provides safe, reliable power to nearly 400,000 customers in southern Arizona. For more information, visit tep.com. For more information about its parent company, UniSource Energy, visit uns.com.

SOURCE: Tucson Electric Power Company

Tucson Electric Power Company
Joseph Barrios, 520-884-3725 (News Media)

Copyright Business Wire 2008

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