Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Doggone it! Cast your vote for our next safe digging ‘ambassadog’

Voting is now underway to select the next star of We Energies’ safe digging campaign! The winner will help us promote an important safety message: Doggone it! Call 811 at least three days before you dig.

Dozens of We Energies customers submitted pictures of their pups — we’ve narrowed it down to 10 finalists.

Now, we’re giving you the “paw-some” responsibility of voting for the “ulti-mutt” winner. You can vote as many times as you like between now and Wednesday, Aug. 5.

We’ll reveal our new “ambassadog” Tuesday, Aug. 11 — 811 Day.

About 811

Whether you’re planting a garden or installing a fence, you could be putting yourself in danger if you strike an underground natural gas line or electrical cable. Contact 811 at least three days before you dig to have the location of buried utility lines marked — and to keep you and your family safe.

Friday, July 17, 2020

Paying it forward: We Energies group supports academic dreams for two local youths

We Energies employee members of the American Association of Blacks in Energy (AABE) – Wisconsin chapter recently presented scholarships to Derek Coleman and Taylor Jagers, two Milwaukee-area high school seniors. The scholarships are part of the group's participation in the Adopt a High School Senior Program.

The Adopt a High School Senior Program was started as a Facebook group dedicated to uplifting Wisconsin’s high school seniors during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Coleman and Jagers are graduates of Golda Meir High School and both plan to attend Milwaukee Area Technical College (MATC).

Coleman is part of the We Energies design apprenticeship program. “Growing up in Milwaukee is no easy task just like life itself,” Coleman said. “There were obstacles along the way that tried to distract and hinder me. It was my responsibility to myself to prevail over these obstacles. Milwaukee has prepared me for the world in the best way.” 

Derek Coleman received funds toward his future education. 

Jagers is pursuing a career in computer engineering. In her free time, she helps care for her disabled grandmother and enjoys listening to music, dancing and coming up with new cookie recipes with her mom. Jaegers says her favorite quote and words to live by are, “You never know until you try, so always give your best; and if you fail, try again.”

Coleman and Jagers each received $1,000 toward their future education. 

Taylor Jeagers (middle) was presented a scholarship
 from We Energies members of AABE-WI

AABE is a nonprofit professional organization that focuses on issues in the energy sector at the national level and serves as professional resources for its members. It promotes educating youth about careers in energy. Additionally, AABE members network on a national basis to help resolve workplace issues via sharing best practices and expertise. We Energies has 22 employees who participate in this organization.


Read more about our yearlong effort to highlight some of the incredible organizations we support here.

Be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter to make sure you don’t miss any #FridayGiving posts.

Thursday, July 16, 2020

Customers urged to stay connected

We Energies is urging customers who are behind on their energy bills to contact us as soon as possible to avoid disconnection. 

Disconnection is always a last resort 
If you are having trouble paying your bill, visit our website or call us at 800-842-4565. We are here to work with you to arrange a payment plan and connect you to financial assistance options. 

Energy assistance is available 
Some customers may qualify for energy assistance through the Wisconsin Home Energy Assistance Program (WHEAP). This year, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, customers have until Sept. 30 to apply. Additionally, income eligibility has been updated to make it easier for people who have been recently laid off. 

Simple ways to manage costs 
There are many ways to manage your energy costs at home and at work. Visit our website for a handy checklist. 

As always, if you have questions about your bill or think you might have trouble paying, call us at 800-842-4565.

Monday, July 6, 2020

Stay cool with these money-saving tips

To help you stay on the sunny side of life, we have some tips to help you save money on your summer energy bill. 

No cost 

Keep the sun out. Close blinds, shades and drapes on the sunny side of your home during the day to keep the house cooler. 

Adjust your thermostat. When at home, set it a few degrees higher to save energy. When you are away, adjust your thermostat 7 to 10 degrees higher than your normal setting for at least 8 hours a day. This can help you save 10% on your energy bill. 

Manage your energy costs with Budget Billing. Budget Billing spreads your annual charges more evenly over 12 months. 

Turn down the heat by delaying heat-producing activities such as cooking, drying and ironing until evenings or when the weather cools.

Leave thermostat’s fan switch on “auto” so the fan only runs when the furnace runs. Setting the fan to “on” causes it to run all the time.

Low cost 

Seal cracks and gaps around windows, doors and siding with caulk and weather stripping. This keeps cool air in and hot air out. 

Use standing fans, even if you have air conditioning. Circulating cool air makes it feel cooler. 

Install a programmable thermostat for your comfort and convenience. It can adjust the air conditioning for times you typically are away and times you typically are home. You also can program it to reduce cooling when you go to sleep and turn it back up before you wake up in the morning. 

Schedule regular tune-ups for your air conditioner. Seasonal maintenance keeps equipment running safely and efficiently, and saves money in the long run. 

Tuesday, June 23, 2020

Bye bye, birdies: We Energies, WPS peregrine falcon chicks leave the nest

The We Energies and Wisconsin Public Service (WPS) falcon chicks (and their parents) are enjoying some pomp and circumstance after reaching another milestone. The chicks have learned to fly and officially joined the class of 2020.

Blaze was the first chick to spread his wings, and his younger brother, Hoppy, was the last. All of the chicks were named in honor of our favorite things about Wisconsin. 

The fledglings will spend the next few weeks learning how to hunt prey and mastering their flying skills. After that, they’ll head off in separate directions to start their own lives.

This year’s class of chicks brings the total number of peregrines hatched, named and banded at We Energies and WPS power plants to 410 since our recovery efforts began in the mid-1990s.

Peregrine falcon program

We Energies and WPS are honored to be a part of a statewide effort to restore the peregrine falcon population. The Department of Natural Resources added peregrine falcons to Wisconsin’s endangered species list in the 1970s.

This program is another way We Energies and WPS demonstrate environmental stewardship. From helping endangered animals and restoring natural habitats, to building new solar facilities and reducing carbon emissions, we are committed to a cleaner future.

Thursday, June 18, 2020

Don’t let a balloon blunder leave your neighborhood in the dark

As we head into the summer of stay-at-home celebrations, we want to remind people there is one party staple that could turn your backyard bash into a blackout — a balloon.

Every year, thousands of our customers lose power in balloon-related outages. Just this past weekend, more than 1,500 customers in Milwaukee lost power when a Mylar balloon came into contact with power lines.

Balloons, especially Mylar balloons, can act as conductors and create a short circuit in a power line. Take a look at what happens when Mylar balloons fly into power equipment and see just how dangerous it can be:

Whether you’re celebrating a birthday or graduation, or just hosting a summer get-together, follow these steps to keep your family safe and the power on:

·       When possible, keep balloons inside.

·       Never release balloons outside.

·       Make sure all balloons are tied securely to a weight that’s heavy enough to keep them from flying away.

·       When you’re done with balloons, let the air out and throw them in the trash.

·       Never try to retrieve a balloon that has become entangled in a power line.

If you spot a balloon stuck in our equipment, give us a call at 800-662-4797. Don’t let a balloon blunder cut your celebrations short.

Friday, June 12, 2020

#FridayGiving: We Energies Foundation supporting Milwaukee Fire Department and other organizations on the front line of COVID-19 relief efforts

We are proud to announce the We Energies Foundation has committed more than $500,000 in donations to health care, emergency response and other nonprofit organizations on the front lines of the fight against COVID-19. 

That includes a special donation to the Milwaukee Fire Department so they can purchase adapters to make their existing personal protective equipment more effective against COVID-19. 

To date, the We Energies Foundation has pledged more than:
• $250,000 to healthcare organizations including Froedtert and the Medical College of Wisconsin, Aurora Health Care and Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin. 
• $125,000 to nonprofits committed to keeping families fed, including Hunger Task Force, Feeding America, Racine County Food Bank, Walworth County Food Pantry and the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee. 
• $125,000 to community organizations including United Way, Salvation Army and the American Red Cross. 

Nonprofit organizations that have not received funding are encouraged to apply for a COVID-19 grant on the We Energies Foundation website. 

To increase the impact of the relief effort, the We Energies Foundation also has earmarked $250,000 to match dollar-for-dollar any personal donations made by employees to organizations fighting the effects of the pandemic.

These donations are part of a commitment from the charitable foundations of We Energies and Wisconsin Public Service to contribute $1 million to nonprofits across our service area. 

We are committed to making the communities where we live and serve a better place for all. The only way to get through difficult times like these is to power through together.