Save to Give Challenge

Katie Jones, Brady Steigauf

CEE is working with Wisconsin’s Focus on Energy on a pilot program in rural Wisconsin that will reward local charities when households in the community take energy efficiency actions at home.

CEE developed an innovative new approach to residential energy efficiency that is being tested in two rural communities in Wisconsin. The Save to Give Challenge is supported by Wisconsin’s Focus on Energy, whose mission is to empower the people and businesses of Wisconsin to make smart energy decisions with enduring economic benefits.

Homeowner apathy has always been a difficult hurdle for energy efficiency programs. Despite the benefits of using, and paying for, less energy, homeowners frequently lack the motivation to make and maintain even small changes around their homes that can add up to big savings.

Process and expected outcomes

Save to Give is tackling this familiar problem with new ideas.

Rural communities are famously tight knit. Residents take great pride in the little things that make their hometowns special. The Save to Give Challenge will reward a community for coming together with donations to a popular local charity when families make small energy efficiency improvements in their homes.

Pilot testing is happening right now in two communities. The Lodi Save to Give Challenge has launched! Learn more here. The Bayfield County Save to Give challenge will launch in the spring.



Project Info



Test whether residents will be motivated to adopt energy saving behaviors and participate in efficiency programs if saving energy has the opportunity to benefit a local charity they care about.

Non-Energy Benefits

  • Investment in local charity.
  • Increased awareness of energy saving behaviors and programs.
  • Financial savings to rural customers.


Phase I – Two Communities
Phase II – Up to Four Communities

Focus on Energy