CHICAGO, June 6, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- ComEd today announced it will award $40,000 in grants to the winners of its Earth Month energy-efficiency contests. Launched in March, the contests include a ComEd Smart Ideas® Earth Month Grant contest for nonprofit organizations and an Earth Month Challenge for schools. The grants will help the winners implement their energy conservation projects.
"As part of ComEd's commitment to the environment, we are dedicated to helping customers of all ages find ways to save energy and resources," said Kevin Brookins, senior vice president of Strategy and Administration, ComEd. "These grants will provide funding for projects that will drive a positive, sustainable change in the communities we serve."
Nonprofit organizations in ComEd's service territory were invited to enter the ComEd Smart Ideas Earth Month Grant Contest by submitting a creative energy conservation idea or project that will help educate their community about the benefits of being energy-efficient. ComEd will award six winning nonprofits individual grants valued at up to $5,000.
The winners of the Smart Ideas Earth Month Grant Contest are:
Aurora Area Interfaith Food Pantry, Aurora, IL – will use its mobile food pantry trucks to offer lighting demonstrations for low-income seniors and low-income families with children to show the potential energy savings by switching to CFL bulbs in place of traditional incandescent bulbs.
"This project will provide up to 6,000 free CFL bulbs to low-income families for whom a savings in the cost of electricity would increase their ability to meet their basic needs with their limited incomes," said Marilyn Weisner, executive director, Aurora Area Interfaith Food Pantry. "We thank ComEd for this energy efficiency grant and for helping us to meet the growing needs of our community."
Centro de Informacion, Elgin, IL – will host a series of community events including seminars, resource fairs, family nights, and consumer workshops to empower Spanish-speaking residents in the far northwest suburbs to be more energy-efficient.
"Hoo Haven" Wildlife Rehabilitation and Education Center, Durand, IL – will expand its Green Energy Open House and renewable energy curriculum-based tours to elementary schools in the Winnebago County area (targeting fourth- and fifth-grade students), as well as partner with the Boy and Girl Scouts of America offering an Energy Conservation merit badge and journey experience program.
Andersonville Development Corporation, Chicago, IL – plans to redesign and expand its Sustainable Business Certification program to more than 300 businesses in Chicago's Andersonville neighborhood. This program offers a comprehensive sustainability checklist that helps local businesses save energy and money on their electric bills.
Lake Katherine Nature Center and Botanic Garden, Palos Heights, IL – will use the funding to conduct energy-efficiency upgrades within its facility, create a permanent energy-efficiency display and offer a one-time public education program to its 26,000 center visitors.
Northbrook United Methodist Church, Northbrook, IL – plans to continue its Porch Light Project and offer free CFL bulbs to residents of Northbrook to encourage them to switch their porch lights from traditional incandescent bulbs to CFLs. The church plans to sign-up 2,000 homeowners in the first year, which would help save nearly 260,000 kilowatts of energy.
In addition, ComEd announced Elk Grove Village's Queen of the Rosary school as the grand prize winner of a $5,000 grant as part of its second annual Earth Month Challenge. Twenty schools and nearly 8,000 students across northern Illinois were invited to participate in this year's challenge. Parents, teachers and students competed in educational, energy-efficiency activities for the chance to win a share of $10,000 in cash prizes, including the $5,000 grand prize.
"We were thrilled to participate in this year's Earth Month Challenge and excited to be crowned the winning school," said Kathleen McGinn, principal of Queen of the Rosary School. "The Challenge taught students that simple changes in their everyday habits can save energy, like turning off the lights when leaving a room."
The winners of the Earth Month Challenge are:
- Queen of the Rosary, Elk Grove Village, IL
- Our Lady of the Ridge, Chicago Ridge, IL
- Trinity Lutheran School, Burr Ridge, IL
- Clarence Culver, Niles, IL
- St Frances of Rome, Cicero, IL
Commonwealth Edison Company (ComEd) is a unit of Chicago-based Exelon Corporation (NYSE: EXC), the nation's leading competitive energy provider, with approximately 6.6 million customers. ComEd provides service to approximately 3.8 million customers across northern Illinois, or 70 percent of the state's population.