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    Q Stop IV Earns Green Ideas Achievement Award

    Retailer's canopy lighting switch saves the equivalent of 5,283 gallons of gasoline per year.

    O'FALLON, Mo. -- Jones Oil Co.'s Q Stop IV, located here, earned the Green Ideas Group's Green Achievement Award for cutting electric power usage and costs 64 percent in its service canopy lighting.

    Management of the energy-efficient c-store chain accepted the Green Ideas Group's recommendation to replace 46 320-watt metal halide (MH) lighting fixtures with 127-watt high intensity fluorescent (HIF) fixtures. The change reduced the site's electric power usage by 58,115 kilowatt-hours per year. A saving this size will remove 43.5 tons of carbon dioxide, 320 pounds of sulfur dioxide and 740 pounds of nitrogen oxides from the atmosphere annually. The reduction's effect can be compared to an 11-acre growth of mature trees or taking eight cars off the road, and is the energy equivalent of saving 5,283 gallons of gasoline per year, according to Green Ideas Group.

    "When our Green Ideas contact called and asked if we'd be interested in looking at a project like this, I told him, 'absolutely,'" said Q Stop General Manager Rich Berliner. "We had some concerns. We liked the idea of reducing our energy costs, but we had to make sure the lighting was going to be functionally and aesthetically similar to what we had. We also liked being able to do something responsible for the environment, which gas stations don't always get the opportunity to do or get any credit for when they do achieve it."

    The company decided to switch out the canopy at one test store. "So far, so good," Berliner said.

    "This award is a very nice surprise, absolutely," Berliner added. "It's nice recognition for the company and is right in line with corporate policy. We try to be responsible members of our community in everything we do."

    HIF lighting uses less than half the current of high intensity discharge lighting, including the metal halide type formerly used by Q Stop IV, while producing comparable or better light levels, according to a statement by Green Ideas Group.

    Q Stop received an energy efficiency incentive of $2,400 to do the project from Ameren, their utility provider, noted Tim Eylander, a managing member of the Green Ideas Group.

    "I'm sure utilities wouldn't offer rebates if the project involved had no energy-saving promise, but the fact is that rebates have been the practice of many utilities across the country for several years now. And replacement of metal halide lighting with HIF, as far as saving energy goes, is a slam dunk," Eylander said. "The fact that Q Stop received a rebate for changing just 46 lights means a company doesn't have to be a giant to participate."

    The Green Ideas Group works with an independent network of partners to implement turnkey energy-efficient lighting solutions across the country.

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