For Immediate Release: September 19, 2012
Media Contact: Kelly M. Kell - 916-654-4989


Riverside County Increases Road Safety through Energy Efficiency

New traffic and pedestrian signals made possible by federal stimulus funds are helping the city of Wildomar increase visibility and safety for motorists and pedestrians.

Thanks to a $131,028 energy grant, the city in eastern Riverside County upgraded 458 traffic and 116 pedestrian signal heads to light emitting diodes (LEDs) at 19 intersections. LEDs use less energy, last longer and are expected to cut down the city's maintenance cost.

In addition, fluorescent illuminated street signs were also converted to LED. In total, 66 street signs were replaced.

Completed in June, the project was paid for by a $131,028 grant from the Energy Efficient Conservation Block Grant program of the U.S. Department of Energy under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Administered by the California Energy Commission, the federal grants are contributing to the energy efficiency goals of small cities and counties.

The retrofit project is expected to save the city 132,442 kilowatt hours or $15,893 in energy costs yearly and reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 91,385 pounds annually.

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Federal stimulus funds to small cities and counties awarded under the ARRA's Energy Efficiency Conservation Block Grants (EECBG) and administered by the Energy Commission are providing more than $33 million to 201 to eligible localities throughout California. Large cities and counties are receiving funding directly from the US DOE.

The California Energy Commission is the state's primary energy policy and planning agency. Created by the Legislature in 1974 and located in Sacramento, six basic responsibilities guide the Energy Commission as it sets state energy policy: forecasting future energy needs; licensing thermal power plants 50 megawatts or larger; promoting energy efficiency and conservation by setting the state's appliance and building efficiency standards; supporting public interest energy research that advances energy science and technology through research, development, and demonstration programs; developing renewable energy resources and alternative renewable