For Minnesota customers
Vol 18, Issue 4
- Doing our part for a cleaner environment
- Three ways to save you time
- Remember: Call before you dig
- Stop before you insulate!
- Don't trash me!
- The amazing, money-saving lightbulb
- Storm safety tips
- Do something good for the environment
- Avoid utility payment scams
- Payment arrangements available for military service personnel
Doing our part for a cleaner environment
We all live, work and play in the same environment, and every one of us has a shared interest in taking care of natural resources and protecting wildlife. Partnering with others is one way that Alliant Energy puts our environmental stewardship into action.
Nearly 400 volunteers and a grant from the Alliant Energy Foundation helped clean up the Iowa River recently as part of Project AWARE, organized by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources. Low river levels actually helped in the cleanup effort. The low water levels made trash and other items buried in the Iowa River for years more visible. In just seven days, volunteers removed 120,000 pounds of debris from the river, including:
- 1,371 tires
- 42,700 pounds of scrap metal
- More than 17,000 pounds of trash
About 86% of the material collected from the river, or more than 103,000 pounds, was recycled.
The Nature Conservancy worked to restore prairie in the Military Ridge Prairie Heritage Area in southwest Wisconsin thanks to a $300,000 grant from the Alliant Energy Foundation. The Nature Conservancy and its partners were able to:
- Plant more than 500 acres of new, native prairie
- Clear trees and brush from more than 200 acres
- Provide funds to eight private landowners to plant more diverse prairies
- Enroll landowners in a conservation program
- Keep more than 800 acres of planted grassland in the project area
- Fund extensive bird surveys in nearly 300 locations
Visit us online to check out more unique ways Alliant Energy continues to help the environment and how you can get involved.
Three ways to save you time
You’ll have more free time when you sign up for three of our free payment programs.
Start by enrolling in online access and in a few easy steps you’ll have 24-hour access to your account. Then sign up for the three payment options that will cut your bill paying time down to nothing.
- Cut the clutter with Paperless Billing. We’ll email you when your bill is ready to view online. No more bills cluttering your desk.
- Never forget a payment with Automatic Payment. Your payment is automatically withdrawn from your bank account each month.
- Pay the same amount every month with Budget Billing. Your payments are averaged to spread heating and cooling costs evenly throughout the year.
Combine all three programs and enjoy your free time!
Remember: Call before you dig
Are you planning yard improvement projects this spring? Follow these safe digging guidelines:
- Call 811 before you dig.
- Wait 48 hours before digging to allow time for utilities to locate buried lines. This locating service is free!
- Respect the utility mark – colored flags, paint or stakes indicate a buried line (red for electric and yellow for gas).
- Dig with care – stay 24 inches away from the utility marks.
If you make contact with a gas or electric line, call Alliant Energy at 1-800-ALLIANT (800-255-4268). If natural gas is blowing, which is a more serious problem, call 9-1-1 immediately.
Stop before you insulate!
Insulating your home? Stop! First get your FREE Home Energy Assessment from Alliant Energy. It’s a requirement to be eligible for an insulation or home sealing rebate. The assessment must be completed before insulation or home sealing is installed. It will determine where to insulate or seal, and how much materials you will need.
With the free Home Energy Assessment, and energy expert will come to your home and pinpoint energy waste. The expert will also inspect your kitchen and laundry appliances, water heating equipment, windows, doors and heating and cooling systems. The expert will conduct two critical checks for carbon monoxide and combustion, to ensure your home is safe. If needed, the energy expert may install some energy-saving items on the spot for free, including:
- Compact fluorescent lightbulbs
- Low-flow showerheads
- Faucet aerators
- Pipe insulation
- Smart power strip
- Water heater insulation wrap
To get a free Home Energy Assessment, Alliant Energy must supply your home’s primary heating energy and your home must have been built before January 1, 2004. If you rent, you must get your landlord’s prior approval.
Don’t trash me!
Compact fluorescent lightbulbs (CFLs) should NOT be thrown into the trash. They contain a small amount of mercury (the amount would fit onto the tip of a pen).
To find a recycling center near you, visit earth911.com or call 1-877-EARTH911. If recycling isn’t possible, place CFLs in a sealed plastic bag before putting in the trash.
The amazing, money-saving lightbulb
Upgrade to compact fluorescent lightbulbs (CFLs) or light emitting diode (LEDs) bulbs and save on your energy bill.
These bulbs produce the same amount of light but use less energy, which saves you money. How much money? By simply changing out your five most-used bulbs (like in your bathroom or kitchen), you can save more than $65 each year on electricity costs.*
Replace your bulbs with energy-efficient CFLs or LEDs today and watch that electric bill ease on down. Also available: indoor CFL light fixtures. They use 25% less energy than standard fixtures by distributing light more evenly and efficiently.*
* Source: ENERGY STAR®
Storm safety tips
Storms can knock out power and damage entire communities. Make sure you know these tips to keep you and your family safe.
- Don’t assume your neighbors called in a power outage. If more customers call in an outage to an area it assists with outage restoration.
- Always assume downed power lines are live, and call 1-800-ALLIANT (800-255-4268) to report the damage.
- Never touch a downed power line, and don’t drive over them.
- If you see a tree branch or something touching a power line, don’t try to remove it. Call Alliant Energy and we’ll take care of the problem safely.
- Unplug major electrical devices to avoid damage from power surges when power is restored.
- Make sure your electricity and natural gas service are shut off before entering a home or basement that has standing water. Standing water can extinguish pilot lights, which can allow natural gas to collect in your home, creating the risk of an explosion.
Do something good for the environment
Enroll in Second Nature
With Alliant Energy’s Second Nature™ program, we’re able to buy more renewable energy produced from wind power, solar PV, and bioenergy. It’s an easy and effective way to do something good for the environment.
Your participation in Second Nature means fewer fossil fuels are consumed, more valuable energy resources are available for future generations, and air quality is improved for all of us to enjoy. There’s no special equipment to buy and your electricity will be just as reliable as it is now!
How much does it cost?
You choose your level of support, either 25%, 50%, or 100%. From there, your contribution is calculated based on your home’s actual monthly electric usage in kilowatt-hours (kWh). This amount is then added to your regular monthly Alliant Energy bill.
Below is an example of a household that uses an average of 1,000 kWh per month. To learn your monthly kWh usage, please log into My Account or call 1-800-ALLIANT (800-255-4268).
Avoid utility payment scams
Beware of a scam occurring in our service area and across the country. The scam uses the threat of service disconnection to convince customers to purchase prepaid credit cards and provide that information over the phone. Other scams request payment by email.
If you receive a call like this, hang up and call us at 1-800-ALLIANT (800-255-4268)!
Alliant Energy does not ask customers to purchase prepaid credit cards and we don’t ask for payment over email. We have several safe and convenient payment options listed at alliantenergy.com/paymentoptions.
Queremos que usted este alerta sobre estafas que al parecer estan dirigidas a nuestros clients que hablan español. Usando la amenaza de desconectar el servicio, los estafadores los convencen a los clientes de compren tarjetas de crédito prepagadas y de que les den informacion. Otras estafas solicitan el pago por correo electrónico. Nosotros no solicitamos pagos de nuestros clientes a través del teléfono ni tampoco pedimos pago por correo electrónico.
Si usted recibe una llamada que parece sospechosa, cuelgue inmediatamente y llamenos. Nosotros no solicitamos pagos de nuestros clientes a través del teléfono ni tampoco pedimos pago por correo electrónico. Tenemos muchas opciones de pago que son convenientes y seguras. Busque estas opciones en alliantenergy.com/paymentoptions o llamenos.
Payment arrangements available for military service personnel
When a household member has been ordered into active duty, for deployment, or for a change of duty station, some customers may find it hard to pay their utility bills. Minnesota law may provide protection from shut off if a residential customer meets one of the following conditions:
- Has a household income below the state median household income or is receiving energy assistance and enters into an agreement to pay 10% of the customer’s gross monthly income toward the customer’s bill and remains reasonably current with those payments; or
- Has a household income above the state median household income and enters into an agreement establishing a reasonable payment schedule and remains reasonably current with payments under the payment schedule.
Right to appeal
If you and Alliant Energy cannot agree on a payment plan, you have the right to appeal to the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission. Alliant Energy will not disconnect your service during the appeal process.
Contact Alliant Energy at 1-800-ALLIANT (800-255-4268) for an application to make and keep a payment plan.
For customer service, call 1-800-ALLIANT (800-255-4268).