Louisiana Utility Launches Refrigerator Recycling Program

Cleco Corp. will pay customers $50 to have outdated, working refrigerators and freezers picked up at their homes and hauled away to be recycled.

Cleco Corp., a public utility holding company based in Pineville, La., launched a new energy-saving program June 4 that pays customers $50 to have outdated, working refrigerators and freezers picked up at their homes and hauled away to be recycled.

"Many households have an additional refrigerator or freezer outside of the home to store food and drinks," said Robbyn Cooper, manager of Investor and Public Relations at Cleco. "Many of these units are older and can require as much as three times more energy to operate than newer, more efficient models. Disposing of these inefficient units can result in savings up to $150 a year for customers participating in Cleco's new program."

The company's announcement said refrigerators or freezers must be clean, empty and defrosted to be recycled through the program, and they must be in working order and have a volume of 10 to 30 cubic feet, which is the standard size for most units. Customers will receive a $50 check within four to six weeks after the unit is hauled away; the program accepts a maximum of two units per household a year.

"This program offers customers a convenient and responsible way to dispose of inefficient units that add to the cost of their electric bills. Using energy wisely helps manage the monthly cost of electricity. These savings added to the $50 incentive create an attractive option for customers," Cooper said.

Cleco has contracted with JACO Environmental to pick up the refrigerators and freezers. JACO recycles them and removes hazardous materials from the old, energy-guzzling units while reclaiming 95 percent of materials to manufacture new products.

Customers can call 877-662-4047 or visit www.cleco.com and go to the safety and conservation page for more information.

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