Save the Watt Wednesday

    TORONTO, May 28 /CNW/ - With the hot weather approaching and air
conditioners getting revved up, Ontario is heading towards a peak energy
demand period. But there are lots of things individual Ontarians can do to
reduce their electricity consumption during the dog days of summer.

    Did You Know...

    -   An average Ontario household consumes around 1,000 kilowatt-hours
        each month.(1)

    -   On average, 60 per cent of a yearly electricity bill goes toward
        heating and cooling the home.(2)

    -   Home appliances make up roughly 18 per cent of household electricity

    -   In a typical home, 20 per cent of household energy costs are created
        by hot water, and the average household does 37 loads of laundry per
        month, using 6,817 litres of water.(4)

    Story Ideas

    -   What are residents in your city doing for Energy Conservation Week?
        Speak with local residents to see what they do to make energy
        conservation a part of everyday life and a family activity.

    -   Energy audits can help identify ways to reduce energy consumption,
        save money and benefit the environment. Chronicle the experience of a
        professional home energy audit or conduct one on your own with the
        attached guide.

    -   Use a watt meter to measure how much energy appliances in your home
        are using. Watt meters are an easy, visual way to highlight the
        impact our appliances have on home energy use that should be
        available from your local hardware store. Demonstrate the effects of
        "phantom load" - the wasted electricity that is consumed by home
        electronics when they are turned off - and provide tips of what
        homeowners can do to reduce their impact.

    (1) Ontario Ministry of Energy:
    (2) Ontario Power Authority:
    (3) Toronto Hydro-Electric System Ltd.:
    (4) Toronto Hydro-Electric System Ltd.:

    What's Happening On Save The Watt Wednesday

    Here is a list of some of the activities happening around Ontario on Save
The Watt Wednesday:

    -   Union Gas

        -  Union Gas will be distributing Energy Savings Kits at Home Depot
           locations in Guelph, Milton, Sault Ste Marie, Waterloo and Windsor
           on May 24, 25, 31 and June 1.

    -   Hydro One

        -  Hydro One wants to acknowledge Ontarians' efforts and creativity
           in saving electricity. As of May 19 and throughout Energy
           Conservation Week (May 25 to 31, 2008), go to
  to enter Ontario's Most Valuable Power
           $aver contest for a chance to win a $10,000 energy efficient
           backyard makeover. Submit a short video, picture, or e-mail
           describing your efforts to conserve or use less electricity. A
           draw will be held in June to award the MVP the grand prize of a
           consultation with an expert who will help you design, purchase and
           install a backyard that is energy efficient and environmentally
           friendly. If you don't have a backyard, you can donate your prize
           within your community.

    -   The Fairmont Royal York Hotel

        -  A guest awareness campaign kicks off for Energy Conservation Week
           with conservation information being made available to guests
           through the hotel's front desk and concierge services.

    -   EnWin Utilities (Windsor)

        -  EnWin Utilities will be at local Wal-Mart locations in Windsor to
           encourage customers to take advantage of the Every Kilowatt Counts
           coupons and educating Ontarians about energy efficient products.

    -   Haldimand County Hydro Inc.

        -  Haldimand County Hydro is encouraging staff to borrow a Kill A
           Watt Meter and take it home to see where they are using too much
           energy for a chance to win prizes.

    -   The Childrens Museum (Waterloo)

        -  Visitors to the museum can discover renewable energy and make
           their own pinwheel Wednesday May 28 at 10:30 am, Thursday May 29
           at 2:00 pm and Friday May 30 at 10:30 am.
        -  Visitors can also view two stories on the Museum's shadow play
           screen Wednesday through Friday: 'The Tale of Johnny the Energy
           Seed' focuses on the sun's energy and 'The Tale of Annie Soakley'
           follows the life of a water droplet.

    -   The Town of Orangeville

        -  Launching the online Orangeville Energy Challenge in which
           residents can go to and compare their natural
           gas and electricity usage to town averages, separated by type of
           dwelling, to see if they are using more or less electricity than
           the average resident.

    -   The Clean Air Foundation (Toronto, Kitchener, Cambridge, Guelph)

        -  The Clean Air Foundation's Keep Cool program helps to ease the
           burden on the energy grid by retiring old inefficient room air
           conditioners and dehumidifiers. For three weekends beginning on
           Saturday May 31 to Sunday June 15 from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm
           visitors who bring their old units to participating Canadian Tire
           stores in the Toronto, Kitchener, Waterloo, Cambridge and Guelph
           areas will receive a $25 instant rebate coupon towards an ENERGY
           STAR(R) qualified replacement unit.

    -   Hudsons Bay Company (Hbc)

        -  Hbc prides itself on being a Canadian retail leader in
           environmental sustainability. It's part of its commitment to help
           sustain the environment. Through this commitment Hbc has partnered
           with the Ontario Power Authority (OPA) to participate in the first
           ever Ontario Energy Conservation Week May 25th to 31st 2008.
           During this week Hbc wil be reducing lighting at all Ontario Bay,
           Zellers and Home Outfitters Hbc stores by 25% (where achievable)
           during regular business hours.

    -   Woodstock Hydro's Peak Treat

        -  Between 5:00 pm and 8:00 pm turn off the air conditioner,
           unnecessary lights and electronics and make your way to Bartley's
           Dairy Bar! Fil out Woodstock Hydro's energy savings questionnaire
           and receive a small soft-serve cone free!

    -   City of Burlington

        -  Come out to Council Chambers at Burlington City Hall on Wednesday
           May 28 at 12:00 pm or 1:00 pm to learn what you can do to reduce
           energy consumption. Enjoy a short video titled "Think. Believe.
           Act." by Peter Love, Ontario's Chief Energy Conservation Officer
           and hear from representatives from Burlington Hydro about current
           residential energy conservation programs that can help save money
           while lowering greenhouse gas emissions and air pollutants.
           Register by e-mailing or by
           calling 905-335-7600 ext. 7580. These events are open to the
           public on a first come first serve basis and door prizes wil be

    -   North Bay Save a Watt Day

        -  Dry your clothes naturally! Starting at 10:00 am retractable
           clotheslines will be given out to the first 150 customers at
           Canadian Tire and Home Depot North Bay.

    -   Lakehead University Project Desk Lamp

        -  The first 500 students, faculty and staff to bring an incandescent
           light bulb (from their office or workplace) to the Bookstore will
           receive a compact fluorescent light bulb in exchange.

    About Energy Conservation Week

    Energy Conservation Week is a province-wide initiative that is being
co-ordinated by the Ontario Power Authority, in co-operation with many
partners, including the Ministry of Energy, the Independent Electricity System
Operator and the Electricity Distributors Association. It combines
awareness-building, the dissemination of practical information about energy
conservation, and encourages implementation of specific measures that will
help Ontario better manage its summer peak and build towards a "culture of

    For more information, visit the Energy Conservation Week website, a dynamic resource that features tips on how to
conserve energy, an energy conservation forum, an events calendar and more.


For further information:

For further information: Megan Spoore, Meredith Sjogren, Charlie Robson,
NATIONAL Public Relations, (416) 586-0180 x 273, 277, 266,,,

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