Conserve and Reduce

Conservation Light Bulb.jpeg

We are looking to the future

DPU is committed to providing utility-wide conservation and efficiency outreach to all of our customers. Programming topics shift with the seasons and evolve with technology and legislation. On this page below are a few of our long-term programs and conservation tips.





The time and effort spent on weatherizing your home can make a big impact and there are programs to assist with the costs. To find out more, click here for DPU's weatherization web page.


Induction Cooktop Loaner Program

Test drive the power of induction!

Curious about an alternative to natural gas or an upgrade to the standard electric cooktop? Induction cooking uses electromagnets to transfer energy directly to the pan placed on the cooktop surface, reducing cook time and giving you more time to do other things you love.

Tall stack of pots and pans Induction heating:
  • Is more powerful than gas stove heating
  • Directs 90% of induction heat into your food by heating up the cookware and not the surrounding stove surface
  • Is safer around pets and children since the heating element is never exposed while on
  • Has better temperature control than other cooking methods, allowing for a transition from a rolling boil to a simmer in seconds
  • Reduces indoor air pollution when compared to gas cooking
  • Will run on clean energy as your DPU works toward becoming a carbon neutral power provider.

DPU customers may borrow cooktop kits for free!

Our customers can sign up for the Induction Cooktop Loaner Program so they can test drive the power of induction for themselves at home. Under the program, a customer may take a kit home for two weeks to get hands-on experience with cooking on an induction cooktop. This opportunity is great for anyone who has an aging range that they'd like to replace, who is considering a kitchen renovation, who might be interested in working toward carbon neutrality, or who is simply interested in trying out the technology.

The Induction Cooktop Loaner Program kits include:
  • A portable single-burner induction cooktop
  • A choice of an induction-ready pot, pan or wok
  • Some colorful utensils
  • User instructions
  • A magnet to test other pots for induction readiness
  • A nifty carrying case
Induction cooktops are also available for checkout from the Library of Things at Mesa Public Library and White Rock Branch Library!

Photo of DPU's induction cooktop kit


Inflation Reduction Act Electrification Savings

A portion of the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) is targeted at providing homeowners, renters, multifamily residents, and commercial businesses with rebates and tax credits to incentivize energy efficiency upgrades.

As of April 2023, only tax credit programming is available. Efficiency rebates are anticipated to be available in late 2023.

We will provide additional information on the IRA as it is released. 

Please visit our Inflation Reduction Act Information web page for all the program information that we have compiled so far.



Reduce Energy Costs

Energy Assessments

The DPU doesn't currently offer in-home energy assessments, but there are several resources available if a complete energy assessments from a professional isn't in the budget.

Calculating Appliance Energy Use
  1. Estimate how many hours per day an appliance runs
  2. Find the wattage of the appliance
  3. Find the daily energy consumption using the following formula:
    • (Wattage × Hours Used Per Day) ÷ 1000 = Daily Kilowatt-hour (kWh) consumption
  4. Find the annual energy consumption using the following formula:
    • Daily kWh consumption × number of days used per year = annual energy consumption
  5. Find the annual cost to run the appliance using the following formula:
    • Annual energy consumption × utility rate per kWh = annual cost to run appliance has a built-in Appliance Energy Calculator and can be a good estimating tool.

If you are looking at energy use for a stove, you'll have to look into the wattage ranges and either estimate usage for middle power settings or be content with minimum and maximum power energy usage.


Power Strips 101

Smart power strips are a thing now! They can add protection against power surges and help you save energy. Click here(PDF, 756KB) for a quick primer on the different types!

Thumbnail picture of Power Strips flyer



Vampire Energy

Have a lot of stuff plugged in to outlets? Standby power is the electric power wasted by these devices when not in use. Check out a fantastic graphic created by Save On Energy that shows the annual totals of common energy eaters. Click on the image below to see the whole thing.

Vampire Energy in the Home - Thumbnail view(PNG, 189KB)

Dig into more at the Save On Energy website.

Tips for Cutting Your Energy Costs
  • Wash clothes in cold water - 80-90% of the energy is used to heat the water alone.
  • Use clothes lines - the low humidity could cut dry time in half versus the machine.
  • Adjust thermostats, either manually or via a program. No sense in fully heating or cooling an empty home-- not even for Fido the dog or Spikey the houseplant.
  • Use! Those! Shades. Close 'em in the summer and open them in the winter.
  • Turn off TVs and computers when you are done using them.
  • If you can't turn off your computer (updates done at night?), at least turn off the screen and see if you can set it to sleep mode.
  • "For the last time" shut the fridge door!
  • If supplementing heating with a space heater, DON'T use near a thermostat or its sensors. You will artificially make it sense that the entire house is warmer and your other rooms will feel very cold.
  • Turn down the water heater (an ideal temp is 120F), but do your research first for possible background conditions.
  • Maintain your HVAC system. The harder your system has to work, the more energy it's consuming.
  • Seal off air leaks to the outside.
  • Switch to LED light bulbs. Looking at all your bulbs and feeling overwhelmed? Start with five light fixtures in the most-used spaces. (Kitchen? Bathrooms? Living spaces?)
  • When it come times to replace appliances, choose more energy-efficient models. Plan ahead for failures. Here's a great resource:
  • Evaluate your home or building's insulation levels.



Energy Efficiency Welcome Kits

Let DPU welcome you with a kit!

Welcome kits for new residents to assist in conserving electricity and natural gas are available at no cost. These kits include a variety of items for use around the home, such as:

  • LED bulbs,
  • Furnace filter whistle
  • Outlet safety covers
  • LED nightlight
  • Switch and outlet seals
  • Rope caulk.

Water conservation items are available upon request. These include:

  • Toilet tank bags
  • Leak estimation rulers
  • Toilet leak dye tablets
  • Drip gauges
  • Faucet aerators.

Contact Abbey Hayward,, to get your kit. Welcome kits can also be picked up at the Los Alamos Nature Center on Canyon Road.

Sustainable Landscaping

Sustainable Landscape Design Training

Water usage doubles during the growing season in Los Alamos as homeowners, businesses and organizations attend to landscapes. The NMSU Cooperative Extension Office, located on Bathtub Row, is an excellent resource for all things landscaping.

Thumbnail image of Sustainable Landscape Design flyer(PDF, 239KB)

Sustainable Landscape Design Series
 Session  Recording (YouTube link)   Presentation (PDF) 
 Transitioning Your Outdoor Space
 Site Inventory and Assessment
 Landscape Design Basics
 Soil Preparation
 Plant Selection


Outdoor Watering Tips

Water Rule W-8

In effect May 1 through September 30, the following outdoor watering schedule is implemented:

  1. Water outdoor landscaping before 10am or after 5pm
  2. Odd addresses irrigate on Sunday, Wednesday, Friday
  3. Even addresses irrigate on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday

Conservation page - W-8 chart

Other conservation tips:

  • Use automatic shut-off nozzles on hoses.
  • Prevent water waste (such as overflowing water onto sidewalks and streets).
  • Use timers on hoses and sprinklers to prevent leaving water on excessively.
  • Reevaluate irrigation schedule and needs.
  • Clean driveways and sidewalks using a broom instead of water.
  • Harvest rainwater or greywater for use later.
  • Wash vehicles using a bucket or a commercial car wash instead of a running hose.



Water & Energy Conservation Plan

DPU's Water and Energy Conservation Plan

On December 7, 2022, the Board of Public Utilities approved the 2022 update to the DPU Water and Energy Conservation Plan. This plan meets state recommendations from the Office of the State Engineer as a condition of approval of the County's water rights and federal requirements as part of Los Alamos County's section of the Joint Integrated Resource Plan with the Department of Energy.

2022 DPU Water and Energy Conservation Plan(PDF, 7MB)

Join your friends and neighbors in using water more efficiently. Sign the “I’m For Water” pledge to help reduce water consumption and ultimately save on your utility bill.