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Plant Saves Money and Energy on Lighting Bill by Switching to LED Lights

CRESSONA — An aluminum parts plant in Schuylkill County teamed up with PPL to save hundreds of thousands of dollars on its lighting bill. It’s a reb...

CRESSONA -- An aluminum parts plant in Schuylkill County teamed up with PPL to save hundreds of thousands of dollars on its lighting bill.

It's a rebate deal that other businesses and people can get in on, too.

They might just look like LED lights, but for 1,100 employees at the Sapa Extrusions facility in Cressona, these new lights are brightening both the room and employee morale.

Before this upgrade, workers made aluminum parts for cars and trucks under lights from the 1950s.

"You can see people on the floor seeing that we're putting an investment in the plant. We want to see the plant grow," Electrical Supervisor Sean Sanko said.

Through the Business Energy Efficiency Program with PPL, workers replaced old incandescent bulbs with LED lighting.

Now, the plant should save more than $350,000 a year in energy costs.

"Just walking into a well-lit work environment, it creates a safer atmosphere for our employees to work in," plant manager Mike Hammer said.

Workers outfitted 1,400 new LED lights in a building that has more than 32 acres under one roof.

Officials said this is going to make a very positive impact on their carbon footprint.

"It'll save 5 million megawatts of energy per year. That's the same as driving one car 8.3 million miles," Business Area President for Sapa North America Charlie Straface said.

PPL gave the plant a rebate of more than $330,000 for the energy saving project.

Other people or organizations can take advantage of the deal, too.

"It's an opportunity for customers as well as residential customers and business customers to use energy efficiency to help them save money on their lighting bills," Manager of Business Services, John Davis said.

Workers ship about a million pounds of aluminum every day. They said these new LED lights are going to make a huge difference.

"Maintenance wise it's going to be great not having to change the light bulbs, we're very proud of it," Sanko said.

Workers said the project will have paid for itself in 2.5 years.