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Why we need a Clean Energy Jobs Act

By David Kolata, CUB Executive Director (Update: Since this column was written, the House Energy and Environment Committee voted to advance the Clean Energy Jobs Act, sponsored by State Rep. Ann Williams and State Sen. Cristina Castro [House Bill 3624/Senate Bill 2132]. The bill awaits a committee vote in the…...

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Free Solar Panels?!

CLAIM: You can get free solar panels installed on your roof! FACT: Some companies offer solar panel installation for no money down, but it’s not exactly free—you’ll be renting the panels, monthly, for the term of the lease, which is usually 20 years. CUB RECOMMENDS: Explore all of your options.…...

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March update: A message from CUB Executive Director David Kolata

We’re tackling big problems, and it’s easy to get discouraged. But I want you to know your support and activism are making a difference in this world. Thank you! More people are hearing our message. Over the last month, we’ve sent about 5,000 emails to the General Assembly. You’ve fought…...

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Cool features on ComEd’s website to help you save

Don’t just pay your bill online and log off: Take advantage of ComEd’s site, which has features to help you save on your electric bills and become more energy efficient. Energy Doctor. Energy efficiency is one of the best ways to reduce your electric bill. You can send a question to…...

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Tips to make the most of ComEd’s Hourly Pricing

With ComEd’s Hourly Pricing, a program that charges the hourly market rate for electricity instead of the standard fixed rate, you could see average savings of 15 percent on the supply portion of your electric bill by shifting your energy-usage to hours when power prices drop (like nights and weekends).…...

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In 35 years of consumer advocacy, this is one of the highest gas rates CUB has ever seen

Dale Fiene has his gas bill set to autopay, so he doesn’t usually look at it too closely—until January, that is, when his gas bill soared to more than $440. By the time he got his most recent bill this March, he saw that his gas supplier was listed as…...

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How much does your phantom load affect your electric bill?

Phantom load–sometimes called “vampire power”–refers to home appliances still using energy even after you turn them off. So what impact does that have on your electric bill? About 10 percent of your energy costs come from wasted power. The National Resources Defense Council found phantom loads account for $19 billion…...

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Today in Springfield

Here’s why we need your help fighting Peoples Gas: Check out the latest numbers on your gas utility’s spending spree. Crain’s Chicago Business reports that capital spending at Peoples (and its smaller sister company) is “set to explode” to $3 billion over the next five years. In one year, Peoples Gas…...

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CUB honored by gift in memory of Chris Conrad

Illinois man remembered as kind-hearted seeker of knowledge  As the Citizens Utility Board (CUB) celebrates its 35th anniversary, we are honored to receive a generous gift from the Chris Conrad Memorial Light-the-Way Fund. The $20,000 gift honors Chris Conrad’s lifelong passion for shining a light on inequity and injustice. We…...

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Water: You pay, so you deserve a say

You pay your water bill, so you should have a say in whether your water system gets privatized. That’s the idea behind House Bill 2392, legislation in Springfield that would require municipalities to hold a referendum before selling off a public water and sewer system. Tell your state legislators to support…...

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