Riverside Public Utilities Shade Tree Planting Program Surpasses 100,000 Tree Mark

Riverside, Calif. – After ten years of providing free shade trees to Riverside residents, which help reduce energy usage, beautify the city, and lower green house gases, Riverside Public Utilities’ (RPU) “Tree Power” program has surpassed the milestone of providing more than 100,000 trees to its customers.

In fact, with the closing of its annual free shade tree coupon promotion last month, the program has now provided a total of 102,768 shade trees that are estimated to save more than 16.2 million kilowatt hours of electricity and offset more than 20.2 million pounds of green house gas emissions annually.

“This is a terrific milestone to reach,” said Riverside’s Mayor Ronald O. Loveridge. “Riverside has long been known for its beautiful canopy of trees, and this program has helped get the word out to our residents and businesses on the many benefits that shade trees provide them, their community, and their environment.”

RPU’s Tree Power public benefits program encourages Riverside electric customers to plant shade trees around their properties that help to curb their energy use. Well placed trees around a structure can reduce air conditioning and cooling costs by as much as 20 percent.

Through their highly anticipated annual “free shade tree coupon” program, RPU gives out more than 12,000 trees annually. This year, 12,638 free trees were planted. For more information on RPU’s Tree Power shade tree program, visit GreenRiverside.com.



July 12, 2011 at 8:46 pm

Free Tree Coupon / Sprinkler Nozzle Programs Ending June 30

Riverside, Calif. – Riverside Public Utilities (RPU) customers have until June 30 to both redeem their Free Shade Tree Coupon from the back of their March utility billing statement, and their Free Sprinkler Nozzles voucher received from logging on to FreeSprinklerNozzles.com.

Those wanting to redeem their free shade tree coupon must take their March billing statement to one of four participating Riverside nurseries by next Thursday. While the back of bill free tree coupon program will be expiring, the Utility’s year-round Tree Power Rebate Program will remain.

Through the Tree Power program, RPU customers can receive rebates for purchasing and planting up to five additional shade trees on their properties (up to $25 per qualifying tree for a maximum rebate of $125).

Customers who logged on to FreeSprinklerNozzles.com and received their vouchers to receive free, water-saving Toro Precision Series Spray Nozzles, also have until next week to pick up their nozzles from a participating Riverside retailer. By installing the patented Toro sprinkler spray heads, customers can instantly reduce their outdoor water use by more than 20 percent per nozzle.

While there is still time to log on to the web site and receive a voucher for free nozzles, all must be redeemed by June 30 to qualify. Residents who miss out on the spring nozzle giveaway program will have another chance to get these high-efficiency nozzles for free in September.

For complete details on these and other available water and energy conservation rebate programs provided by RPU, visit: http://www.RiversidePublicUtilities.com


Established in 1895, Riverside Public Utilities is a consumer-owned water and electric utility governed by a board of nine community volunteers that provides high quality, reliable services to over 106,000 metered electric customers and 64,000 metered water customers throughout the City of Riverside.  The Utility is committed to increased use of renewable energy resources and sustainable living practices that help reduce environmental impacts within the City of Riverside and the state of California.


     www.RiversidePublicUtilities.com       www.GreenRiverside.com      www.BlueRiverside.com

June 24, 2011 at 9:16 pm

Author Charles Fishman Discusses New Book

 Author Charles Fishman Discusses New Book

“The Big Thirst” On the Next Green Power Report

Riverside, Calif. – Tune in to Riverside Public Utilities’ weekly radio program the “Green Power Report” on Monday, June 27, at 8:30 p.m. on KTIE 590 AM when host Mike Bacich speaks with noted journalist and author Charles Fishman about his latest book “The Big Thirst – The Secret Life and Turbulent Future of Water.”

The Big Thirst examines how water, the most vital substance in our lives, is more amazing and mysterious than we appreciate. Fishman brings vibrantly to life in his surprising and mind-changing narrative, how water runs our world in a host of awe-inspiring ways despite our taking it completely for granted.

Tune in to hear more from the author about his insights on our relationship with water and about the creativity we can bring to ensuring that we’ll always have plenty of it.

This program, along with other Green Power Report broadcasts, is available to download through iTunes and via the show’s radio player at www.GreenRiverside.com

For additional information on the “The Big Thirst” visit www.TheBigThirst.com


Established in 1895, Riverside Public Utilities is a consumer-owned water and electric utility governed by a board of nine community volunteers that provides high quality, reliable services to over 106,000 metered electric customers and  up to 64,000 metered water customers throughout the City of Riverside.  The Utility is committed to increased use of renewable energy resources and sustainable living practices that help reduce environmental impacts within the City of Riverside and the state of California.


     www.RiversidePublicUtilities.com       www.GreenRiverside.com      www.BlueRiverside.com

June 24, 2011 at 9:11 pm


Riverside, Calif. – Riverside Public Utilities’ (RPU) newest local power generation units have achieved their commercial operation status and are now ready to serve the city of Riverside’s electrical needs during times of peak use and in emergency situations.The generation units are located at RPU’s Riverside Energy Resource Center (RERC), a 16-acre site adjacent to the city’s water quality control plant on Acorn Street. RERC’s first two generators, units 1 & 2, were completed in June 2006.

With the completion of units 3 & 4, RERC now features four state-of-the-art 48 megawatt (MW) simple-cycle combustion turbines and generators that can produce a total of 192 MW (one megawatt is enough power for approximately 750 southern California homes).

“These plants could not have been made possible without the commitments of Riverside’s leaders who recognized years ago the tremendous importance of creating local power plants to help serve our city’s needs,” said RPU General Manager David H. Wright. “These plants help us to keep energy rates low for our customers, increase our reliability, and offer valuable resources to Riverside in the event of an emergency or natural disaster.”

Since RPU is limited in the amount of energy it can bring in to the city, having internal generation units like those at RERC are essential in meeting customer needs during peak summer months. RPU also operates a 40 MW power plant at its Springs Substation, and 30 MW combined cycled power generation plant at the Clearwater Water Treatment Plant located in Corona which help increase the city’s capacity to meet these peak energy demands. Additionally, local power plants are essential in times of emergency, should Riverside’s outside power connections be disrupted.

RPU will host a dedication ceremony for the two new RERC power plants on May 25.

May 24, 2011 at 3:17 pm

Riverside’s Green Initiatives, Sustainability Plans Receive Honors in International Communitas Awards

DALLAS, TX – The City of Riverside’s environmental initiatives and sustainability plans were recognized for their outstanding achievements by the Association of Marketing and Communications Professionals (ACMP) in their international Communitas Awards competition last week.

The City of Riverside was one of only 30 to receive 2011 Communitas Awards, which recognize exceptional businesses, organizations, and individuals from around the globe for their specific programs involving volunteerism, philanthropy, or ethical, sustainable business practices.

Riverside received two Gold Communitas Awards for its “Sustainability Programs” and “Green Initiatives” entries, which highlighted the city’s ongoing efforts in creating and implementing environmental policies and programs such as their Green Action Plan – which outlines Riverside’s strategies for increased use of renewable energy resources, preservation of water resources, reduction of greenhouse gases, waste management, recycling, and transportation, that help to maintain and cultivate a more sustainable community.

Riverside was also one of a handful of participants chosen by the ACMP this year to receive the Platinum Leadership in Community Service and Corporate Social Responsibility Award for its “Green Riverside/Seizing our Destiny” entry. The Leadership award is given only to organizations which show excellence in multiple programs.

“These awards highlight the many efforts Riverside is committed to and have been promoting for the last ten years,” said Riverside City Councilmember Rusty Bailey, who also chairs the city’s Land Use/ Utility Services / Energy Development Committee. “We are very pleased to be honored for our accomplishments.”

“While creating award winning policies and programs helps to keep Riverside among the leading green cities in the nation and around the world, we are also proud to be able to share our blueprints of success with other communities, and foster the ‘people helping people’ spirit that the Communitas Awards represent,” Bailey said.

May 3, 2011 at 4:10 pm

Riverside Solar Projects Now Generating Over 3 Megawatts

Riverside, Calif. – With the addition of two city-funded solar projects coming online last month, the City of Riverside has achieved yet another major milestone toward increasing its renewable energy portfolio by surpassing the 3 megawatt (MW) mark of clean, renewable energy that is produced by solar generation projects throughout the city.

Just six months ago the city surpassed the 2 MW mark as commercial and residential solar projects continued to be constructed citywide, spurred on by more affordable and efficient solar technology, available tax incentives, and utility rebates.  One megawatt is enough energy to serve about 750 Southern California homes.

“Ever since our first solar carport went online in November 2001, our goal has been to educate customers on the benefits that a solar energy system can provide to them, their city, and the environment,” said Riverside Public Utilities (RPU) General Manager David H. Wright.  “With 249 additional projects coming online within the past ten years, we can see that our customers understand those benefits.”

A 20.70 kilowatt (kW) system at the city’s wastewater treatment facility on Acorn Street, and a 19.20 kW system at the new Marcy Branch Library helped push Riverside’s solar totals over 3 MW in April. City and utilities-funded projects at parks, senior centers, parking lots, and even atop city hall now provide more than 780 kW that help offset energy usage at their locations.

“It’s exciting to see the continued exponential growth of our city’s solar energy portfolio,” said Riverside’s Mayor Ronald Loveridge.  “Each new system, along with each new milestone, moves Riverside closer toward the goals we established in our Green Action Plan and makes Riverside a model solar city.”

With a 100 kW system expected to come online this week at local manufacturer GAR Laboratories, located in the Hunter Business Park, Riverside is already rapidly moving toward its next solar milestone of reaching 4 MW. For additional information about solar energy projects in Riverside and to view Riverside’s Solar City Map, visit: GreenRiverside.com

May 3, 2011 at 4:08 pm


Riverside, Calif. – Riverside Public Utilities (RPU) received nine separate honors in the 2011 Inland Empire Ad Club/American Advertising Federation ADDY Awards competition for various advertising, public information, and marketing campaigns from the past year.

Conducted annually by the American Advertising Federation (the oldest national advertising trade association representing 50,000 professionals in the advertising industry), the IEAC/AAF ADDY Awards are the first of a three-tier, national competition that recognizes creative excellence of all forms of advertising.

RPU, which creates a variety of informative advertising, marketing, and customer communications pieces each year, received five Silver, and four Bronze ADDY Awards in this year’s local district competition.

Silver winning entries included the utility’s: 2010 Financial Report; “Scary Bills” advertisement; “Rudy” Energy Conservation advertising campaign; “It’s Better with Water” billboard advertisement; and Green Riverside Press Kit.

Meanwhile, RPU’s “Red Dot” conservation programs advertising campaign; “FreeSprinklerNozzles.com” water conservation program; Business Programs at a Glance brochure, and “RPU News” employee newsletter each received Bronze ADDY award recognitions.

“Customer communication is very important for us,” said Riverside Public Utilities Assistant General Manager for Customer Relations/Marketing Michael Bacich. “Through advertising and marketing, we can provide customers with information about our valuable rebate programs which can help them reduce their energy and water use and lower their utility bills.”

“To do that in an informative, educational, and creative way, and be honored by the American Advertising Federation for that creativity is very satisfying,” Bacich said.

March 17, 2011 at 9:53 pm

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