Eversource Shines Light on Nonprofit

 Newton, MA When The Second Step began focusing on lighting challenges at its two locations in Newton, they partnered with Eversource to make energy-efficiency improvements, saving an estimated $12,000 in annual energy costs. 

The Second Step, founded in 1992, is a nonprofit that has helped thousands of domestic violence survivors build brighter futures for themselves and their children. 

The indoor and outdoor lighting at both locations, which is often left on throughout the day, was previously too dark for residents coming and going. They knew all-new lighting fixtures were needed but didn’t have the resources to perform the upgrades.

The Second Step participated in The Mass Save, a small-business program that begins with a free, no-obligation energy assessment conducted by an Eversource-authorized contractor. Business owners receive a comprehensive proposal of all possible energy-efficiency opportunities, the complete costs and estimated energy savings, along with available incentives and financing options. Typical upgrade opportunities may include LED lighting, occupancy sensors, programmable thermostats, pipe and duct insulation, refrigeration controls, and more.

The Second Step upgraded to new long-lasting and efficient indoor and outdoor LED lighting and also installed low-flow faucet aerators and showerheads, and single- and double-door weather stripping. The project qualified for Mass Save incentives, which helped offset the overall cost of the projects. The upgrades will deliver ongoing energy savings, essentially paying for the remainder of the project cost in less than a couple of years and provide year-after-year savings into the future.

“The lighting project achieved our goal of creating a more vibrant indoor atmosphere and a brighter, safer outdoor environment for our residents and guests,” said Community Engagement and Facilities Coordinator Cindy Laughera. “We also spend less time and money on replacing light bulbs now and can invest those resources and dollars back into our important mission.”

The Second Step is saving more than 45,800 kilowatt-hours of electricity and 900 therms of natural gas annually, the equivalent of powering nearly seven homes for a year. The project will also reduce CO2 emissions by approximately 26 tons — the equivalent to taking six cars off the road for a year.

“Connecting organizations in Newton and throughout Massachusetts to solutions for savings and energy management is an important part of what we do,” said Eversource Energy Efficiency Spokesperson Bill Stack.