Citizens Bank traces its origins in Providence to 1828. Since then, Citizens has grown to become one of the largest commercial banks in the United States, serving customers throughout New England, the Mid-Atlantic, and the Midwest.
In the state that serves as its birthplace, Citizens embarked on an extensive efficiency program involving all its major Rhode Island locations and operations centers, including more than 80 branch offices. National Grid’s technical representatives worked alongside Citizens contractors, technical engineers, and energy consultants to determine appropriate efficiency measures. The comprehensive project included lighting and lighting controls, exterior lighting, HVAC rooftop units, and emergency management system (EMS) additions.
As one of the nation’s most respected financial institutions, Citizens knows a thing or two about low interest advantages. It utilizes National Grid’s energy efficiency program by taking advantage of higher incentive levels for comprehensiveness, and by participating in National Grid’s on-bill finance program, which allows them to pay back project costs (after incentives) over two years with no interest.
The Bank continually works with National Grid and its vendors to study efficiency measures at each Rhode Island location. For example, at one branch on Atwood Avenue in Cranston, Citizens will save about $5,000 each year on its electric bill after replacing 162 light fixtures with high-efficiency bulbs. Add up similar upgrades statewide, and the annual energy savings climb into the millions of dollars.
The measures also add up in another crucial area: jobs. According to a 2013 National Grid report, the project has supported the equivalent of 529 full-time jobs, including plumbers, electricians, HVAC technicians, and weatherization personnel. The vast majority of these workers were hired through companies in Rhode Island, providing a key boost to the state’s economy.
As National Grid Rhode Island President Timothy F. Horan told the Providence Journal, “For more than 25 years, Rhode Island has led the way in creating innovative energy efficiency programs that have cut our customers’ energy costs and benefited our environment. Now, we have the data to prove that energy efficiency is driving the state’s economy.”
When it comes to its future, these are dividends that Rhode Island can bank on.