TECO Peoples Gas is offering new, lower rates for customers who install innovative natural gas-fueled air-conditioning systems in their home or business.
A gas heat pump cools and heats using natural gas, instead of electricity. It provides air conditioning that could be resistant to power outages, and, in some cases, can simultaneously supply backup or emergency power to other appliances, similar to a generator.
"We are excited to be the first utility in Florida – and among the first in the country – to offer a new, lower rate for this innovative technology," said T.J. Szelistowski, president of Peoples Gas. "As customer demand increases for reliable, clean energy solutions, Peoples Gas is looking for ways to make them more affordable."
Gas heat pumps can reduce operating costs and produce less noise than traditional electric heat pumps. They also benefit the environment through reduced carbon dioxide emissions. Gas heat pumps have been available since the 1990s and are more commonly used in Europe and Asia. For an additional level of reliability, a micro-combined cooling heat and power (mCCHP) system provides onsite backup power generation.
Gas heat pumps are best suited for homes and small to mid-sized businesses, and could include restaurants, convenience stores, assisted living facilities and small manufacturers, among others. Businesses may also qualify for an energy conservation rebate after purchase and installation.
For more information, visit www.peoplesgas.com/GHP.
The Florida Public Service Commission approved the new, lower rate earlier this summer.
Peoples Gas System, Florida's largest natural gas distribution utility, serves about 375,000 customers across Florida. Peoples Gas is a subsidiary of Emera Inc., a geographically diverse energy and services company headquartered in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.