JACKSON — Consumers Energy awarded nearly $3.7 million in incentives to commercial and industrial customers in the third quarter of 2012 to help fund 996 energy efficiency projects that provide long-term savings.

These projects are saving the 959 participating customers an estimated $3.9 million in energy costs annually. The energy saved through the projects is enough to serve more than 5,000 residential electric customers and nearly 800 residential natural gas customers for a year.

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Business Solutions, the energy efficiency incentive program for commercial and industrial customers, is part of Consumers Energy’s comprehensive energy efficiency effort, which stems from the state’s comprehensive 2008 energy law.

“These Business Solutions incentives are helping Michigan schools and businesses cut costs now for energy efficiency projects that in turn will reduce operating costs for years to come,” said Fred Alatalo, business energy efficiency operations director for Consumers Energy. “This program highlights one way Consumers Energy is keeping its promise to provide customers with a good energy value.”

To learn more about Consumers Energy’s energy efficiency programs for business and residential customers and how to apply for incentives, please visit www.consumersenergy.com.

Here’s a list of some of the customers that received energy efficiency incentives in the third quarter of 2012:

Allegan County
* Hopkins Public Schools, Hopkins: $76,983 for lighting upgrades, saving 893,740 kWh annually.

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Bay County
* Delta College, Bay City: $121,400 for high-efficiency chiller, geothermal heat pumps and other improvements, saving 1.7 million kWh annually.

Calhoun County
* Asmo Manufacturing, Battle Creek: $3,544 for lighting upgrades, saving 35,172 kWh annually.
* Musashi Auto Parts Michigan, Battle Creek: $1,430 for lighting upgrade, saving 9,000 kWh annually.
* Ralcorp Holdings, Battle Creek: $9,000 for a compressed air audit, saving 374,400 kWh annually.
* II Stanley, Battle Creek: $990 for lighting upgrades, saving 13,728 kWh annually.
* Kellogg USA, Battle Creek: $12,148 for a compressed air energy audit, saving 936,000 kWh annually.

Genesee County
* University of Michigan-Flint, Flint: $2,640 for lighting upgrades, saving 15,532 kWh annually.
* Flint Community Schools, Flint: $35,424 for air-cooled chillers, saving 171,646 kWh annually.
* Genesee Packaging Inc., Flint: $8,640 for a lighting retrofit, saving 105,984 kWh annually.

Kalamazoo County
* Lifecare Inc., Kalamazoo: $9,958 for a chiller upgrade, saving 39,807 kWh annually.
* Hinman Lake LLC, Portage: $1,800 for a variable frequency drive in their HVAC system, saving 36,020 kWh annually.

Ottawa County
* Ottawa Area Intermediate School District, Holland: $12,917 for efficient indoor and outdoor lighting, saving 78,994 kWh annually.

Saginaw County
* Caraustar Industries Inc., Saginaw: $18,820 for lighting upgrades, saving 257,954 kWh annually.
* Frankenmuth Mutual Insurance, Frankenmuth: $1,290 for two projects to achieve Energy Star Certification, saving 9,650 kWh annually.

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Consumers Energy, the principal subsidiary of CMS Energy, provides natural gas and electricity to 6.8 million of Michigan’s 10 million residents in all 68 Lower Peninsula counties.