Rochester Public Utilities | Blog

Archive for September, 2010

Environmental Achievement Awards call for nominations

Monday, September 13th, 2010

Environmental Achievement Awards call for nominations


ROCHESTER, MN— Olmsted County and Rochester Public Utilities (RPU) are seeking nominations for their annual Environmental Achievement Awards. These awards are given to individuals, organizations, schools, and businesses that have made a significant contribution to environmental quality in Olmsted County. Categories available for nomination include: renewable efforts, conservation, energy, water, agriculture, education, and other.   


The awards were developed in 1992 to recognize individuals and groups that are making Olmsted County a more sustainable community through innovative programs and practices that demonstrate environmental leadership.


In 2009, there were eight recipients of an Environmental Achievement Award.  The recipients were:

Maggie Herman- Quarry Hill Volunteerism
IBM Corporation- Wildlife at Work Program
Bicycle Pedestrian Advisory Committee-Downtown Bicycle Study
Sontes Restaurant- Green Business Practices
Christine Schultz- Energy
Boulder Dam Canoe & Kayak Rental- Adopt-a-River Program
Bamber Valley Elementary- Science Olympiad “Our Human Footprint”
Lisa Boardman- Renewable

Completed nominations are due by October 22nd  to either Sara Gimberline at or Michele Rysavy at .  To access the nomination form, or for more information about the Environmental Achievement Awards visit


The awards will be presented at an evening program on January 27, 2011 at the Rochester Golf & Country Club.



About Rochester Public Utilities


As the municipal utility of Rochester, Minn., for more than 110 years, RPU provides high-quality and reliable electricity to over 45,000 customers.  Water customers number more than 34,000.  RPU continually investigates innovative technologies to help customers realize the best value from the services they receive.  Current initiatives include fuel cell research, wind power, and photovoltaic offerings.





Customer Notice

Thursday, September 9th, 2010

Rochester Public Utilities cautions consumers to be cautious of promotions offering drastic energy saving claims.  If you receive a call or mailing from anyone offering to sell you equipment that offers energy savings please give us a call.  We provide residential and commercial rebates for many energy savings projects including appliances, lighting, air conditioning and heating, and even a custom program for projects don’t fit our prescriptive programs.  If we don’t offer a rebate there is a good chance the energy savings technology is not proven.  For more information on our residential and commercial rebate programs check out Conserve & Save Rebates on our website or call customer service at 507-280-1500

AU, OPU, and RPU Announce New Solar Rebate Program

Tuesday, September 7th, 2010





Date:               September 7, 2010          

Contact:         Tony Benson, RPU





AU, OPU, and RPU Announce New Solar Rebate Program


ROCHESTER, Minn.— Austin Utilities (AU), Owatonna Public Utilities (OPU), and Rochester Public Utilities (RPU), are pleased to announce the Conserve and Save Solar rebate program available to residential and commercial customers that install either a solar electric or solar hot water system.  In offering this rebate, AU, OPU, and RPU hope to encourage the growth of solar energy in their communities, while at the same time capturing energy savings that the systems will provide for their conservation improvement programs.


The Conserve and Save Solar rebate is a onetime payment of $1 per installed watt for solar electric systems and $15 per square foot net aperture for solar hot water systems. To qualify for the solar electric rebate, participants must sign an interconnection agreement with their utility. At the installation site, participants must also have completed an energy audit and a shading analysis to show that systems will not be affected by shade. 


“Solar technologies work best in an energy efficient home or building.  Adding insulation and energy efficient lighting, appliances, heating and cooling systems, is vital before considering solar technologies,” said Roger Warehime, Owatonna Public Utilities.   “For this reason, customers must conduct an energy audit on the solar installation site in order to qualify for the rebate.”


The program will benefit both our customers and the environment,” said Larry Koshire, Rochester Public Utilities General Manager. “One 2.5 kilowatt photovoltaic system produces enough renewable energy each year to offset the carbon dioxide emissions produced from driving a car more than 5,889 miles. Also, when we buy your excess energy, we’re adding renewable energy to our grid and, therefore, reducing emissions.”


The Conserve and Save Solar rebate is available in conjunction with the 30% federal tax credit for solar technologies and is available on a first come first served basis.


AU, OPU, and RPU are municipal utilities serving their respective communities in Southeast Minnesota with electric, gas and water service (gas service is not available in Rochester).  Their nine year old marketing partnership builds brand awareness and promotes energy efficiency.  “Conserve & Save” is one way they are “Teaming Up to Save You Money.”



RPU will be closed on Monday, September 6 in observance of Labor Day

Wednesday, September 1st, 2010

The RPU Service Center will be closed on September 6 in observance of Labor Day. Payments can be dropped off at a drop box location or can be submitted online at Have a safe and happy holiday weekend.