Justin Mulcahy, BGE Communications Manager
Utility scammers may call you or they may come to your door. The angle of the scam may change, but the tactics remain the same — pressuring customers to turn over personal information and money.
We are committed to educating our customers and putting a stop to scamming. Periodically we see increases in reports of individuals calling our customers and falsely claiming that utility service will be disconnected unless an immediate payment is made.
Impersonators then direct customers to buy a prepaid credit card and call back with the card number or other personal banking or utility account information.
Scammers also use a tactic called "caller ID spoofing" to manipulate the displayed phone number so that it appears on your phone's caller ID as a BGE number.
BGE has also investigated reports of supplier switching. In this scam, individuals obtain utility account information and change a customer's energy supplier without their knowledge.
These are the lengths scammers go to now. So, please stay alert.
Don't get scammed! Take these extra precautions:
The safety of our customers and employees is a top priority.
For more information on scams and utility imposters, click here.
Alex Nunez, Sr. Vice President Regulatory & External Affairs
For the second straight year, Light City Baltimore is brilliantly showcasing amazing light art installations and musical performances from local, national and international artists.
While the lights and music take center stage at night, during the day it's the innovative ideas and engaging people that shine the brightest at Labs@LightCity.
Six different conferences bring together national and local community thought leaders in an exchange of ideas on topics ranging from design to food, to social, education and health matters.
This year, I had the honor of serving as emcee for the BGE-sponsored GreenLab@Light City, which delved into energy, ecology and economics in a visionary and thought provoking dialogue on April 4.
Three powerful themes emerged again and again throughout the day in different forms:
Reclamation: Whether it was MacArthur 'Genius' grant recipient Majora Carter talking about reclaiming part of the Bronx River and revitalizing boarded up neighborhood blocks and rundown parks, or the USDA Forest Service and Humanim partnering to keep urban trees and lumber from vacant houses out of the waste stream through the Baltimore Wood Project, the theme of the power of reclamation was evident. We are surrounded by incredible resources to which we simply have to apply innovative thought from the right mix of engaged and committed partners. Right in front of us are the overlooked and underutilized elements of our society that hold the power to uplift entire communities and generations.
Partnerships: Each of us can make a difference and be a force for positive social change. However, when you seek to collaborate and ideate with diverse partners, the potential for positive effect is exponential. We learned how some of the strongest initiatives are fueled by networks of nonprofit leaders, social entrepreneurs, government agencies, academic institutions, and local community members from all generations and socio-economic backgrounds. During GreenLab, the most amazing examples of sustainability and change discussed were often the vision of multiple persons, companies, agencies, or nonprofit organizations. There is real power is in broad, diverse and inclusive networks.
Innovation: Every great idea we discussed at GreenLab was fueled by the spirit of innovation—looking at a need, a process, or a problem in a new or different way. We heard from Calvin Butler, CEO of BGE and Exelon Vice President of Generation Innovation and Strategy Development Mike Smith about how critical it is for established companies like BGE and Exelon to think like startups, view detours as opportunities to explore, and always keep pressing forward to better serve customers and communities. We also heard from Dr. Leyla Acaroglu about the imperative of re-inventing the shape of our experience and impact on the Earth by acknowledging the need to challenge the status quo and then use deliberate design and systems thinking to elicit long-term sustainability.
Watching these themes interweave throughout GreenLab reinforced how powerful Light City Baltimore can be in spurring collaborative ideation and social innovation. It's exactly why BGE has been proud to serve as the lead founding partner of Light City Baltimore in its first two years. Thank you to everyone who attended Labs@Light City and I encourage those interested in social innovation to consider attending next year. Enjoy the final weekend of the festival!
Richard Yost, Communications Manager
In late March, Nissan brought the all-electric LEAF to the Lord Baltimore Building for an employee ride-and-drive event.
By getting employees behind the wheel, BGE hoped to build awareness of electric vehicle (EV) capabilities and increase interest in purchasing the vehicles for personal use.
About 30 employees took advantage of the opportunity and many came away impressed by the EV's performance while also noting concerns about their range and a lack of charging locations.
Raising awareness and addressing any concerns are key steps to inspire early EV adoption.
The company initially became involved with EVs after their introduction in 2010 when it purchased some for its fleet and installed charging stations. Now BGE is focused on supporting the state of Maryland's goal to have 300,000 zero-emissions vehicles on the road by 2025.
And with utilities' natural experience in building and maintaining electric infrastructure, there is an opportunity for companies like BGE to take the lead in creating a charging network.
Once a charging network is under development, experts expect EV adoption to accelerate, which will help Maryland meet its clean air and water goals.
Click here to view a WJZ-TV news segment on the event and here for a BGE-produced video.
John Murach, Manager, Energy Efficiency Programs
The State of Maryland set a goal to have 300,000 zero-emissions vehicles (ZEV) on the road by 2025.
Why so many?
Electric vehicles (EVs), the most commonly available ZEVs, can drastically reduce the amount of pollution from transportation. Even plug-in hybrids use less gasoline per mile and produce less tailpipe emissions than conventional cars. This would lead to a huge and positive impact on air quality and the health of Chesapeake Bay.
So in addition to saving drivers money and supporting energy independence, choosing to drive an EV can help Maryland meet its air quality and Healthy Chesapeake Bay goals.
EVs create less air pollution than conventional vehicles since they don't burn gasoline or diesel fuel. Even when construction costs and emissions from power plants are taken into consideration, EVs contribute significantly less greenhouse gases to the environment than traditional gas-fueled cars.
With Marylanders driving about 135 million miles every day, it's clear that EVs can make a huge difference in air quality.
But reduced emissions can also improve the health of waterways. In Maryland, about one quarter of the Chesapeake Bay's nitrogen pollution problem is attributed to air pollution, mostly from vehicles. Excess nitrogen can cause algae blooms, which can create low-oxygen dead zones that suffocate marine life.
Reduce the amount of nitrogen, and we get a healthier Bay!
At BGE, we believe that utilities can help advance the adoption of EVs, which is another way that we can help protect the environment while helping to move smart energy forward.
Ammanuel Moore, Economic Development Manager
A rising tide lifts all boats. This expression, which has been used in many economic conversations, points to the notion that as the economy benefits, so does its participants. From global economies to right here in Maryland, we can see this effect. When local businesses flourish, jobs are more abundant, investment and consumer activity increases and tax revenues grow. Combined together, this can improve a citizen's quality of life.
BGE is a staunch supporter of Maryland's effort to grow its economy. Through partnerships with state and local economic development agencies, we provide energy cost saving programs that make the state more attractive for new and expanding businesses. We also continuously invest in our electric and gas systems to ensure we're able to meet the energy needs of Maryland's growing business community.
From replacing pipes and wires to trimming trees and upgrading meters, this work helps support thousands of jobs and saves customers money by enabling better energy management and cost-savings programs.
In January, we released our latest economic impact study (focused on 2015 data) published by the Economic Alliance of Greater Baltimore. Among many key highlights, the study shows that BGE contributes more than five-billion dollars in economic value to the state through our general operations. Each year, we spend more than one-billion dollars on goods and services, which helps to support thousands of jobs and households throughout the region. More than a third of what we purchase is spent with local business and more than 25 percent of our total spend is with diverse certified companies.
As Maryland's largest utility, BGE recognizes the role it can play in helping to drive Maryland's economic growth. We're committed to working with state and local government, businesses, support groups and residential customers to ensure that we are operating efficiently, constantly innovating and applying our resources, including the energy of 3200 employees, to create the greatest good for Maryland.
Justin Mulcahy, Communications Manager
For some, the images of Mondawmin Mall are of rocks and bricks being thrown nearly two years ago during the unrest in Baltimore.
But the images during the recent grand opening of TouchPoint Baltimore at Mondawmin were of people smiling, hugging and even shedding a few tears. It was a moment nearly two years in the making.
So what is TouchPoint Baltimore?
Corporate sponsors BGE and Whiting-Turner partnered with four nonprofits—Thread, Baltimore Corps, Center for Urban Families and Invested Impact to create a space at Mondawmin Mall for collaboration among nonprofits, corporate partners and the community.
"We wanted to make a difference. We wanted to show the community that we care and that we are here to support them," said BGE Chief Executive Officer Calvin G. Butler Jr. "This is a place for citizens to go when they think there are no options left."
The four nonprofits have missions that complement each other and the TouchPoint mission. Services include mentoring, tutoring, workforce development, life skills support, leadership development and entrepreneurial support.
"Growing up in the inner city, you see things that are tempting and that you might want to indulge in," said Devin Morton, a Thread graduate. "Being in the Thread program has shown me there is a different way of living and it has helped me to become a productive member of society."
The hope is that the creation of TouchPoint will serve as a model for other corporations and nonprofits and be implemented in other communities for maximum impact.
For more information on TouchPoint, please visit http://www.touchpointbaltimore.org/
John Murach, Manager Energy Efficient Programs
At the most basic level, any vehicle that is powered by electricity from a plug-in rechargeable battery is an electric vehicle (EV).
But did you know there are different types of EVs?
Many EVs on the road today rely on a gas engine to extend driving range or increase the vehicle's power. But BEVs are becoming more prevalent and accessible like with the 2017 release of Chevy's Bolt.
For those that decide to go electric, whether it a full electric, EREV or a plug-in hybrid, you can expect cost savings on fuel, as electricity is typically less expensive than gasoline on a cost per mile basis. And while electric bills can be expected to increase due to charging the vehicle's battery, the purchases of gasoline will decrease or be eliminated.
But BGE has developed an EV electric rate that provides a price incentive for owners who charge their vehicles during times when demand for electricity (and costs!) are lower and have a either a smart meter or Time-of-Use meter.
This rate varies based on the time of day (lower during off-peak hours and higher during peak hours), updates seasonally and applies to all electricity usage associated with an account. For example, peak hours are between 10 am and 8 pm on weekdays during the summer. If a customer charges their vehicle during off-peak hours (before 10 am, after 8 pm, or anytime on the weekend), they will be charged a lower rate.
If you purchase or lease an EV, please register your vehicle with BGE by filling out this form and to get more information or enroll in the EV electric rate, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
According to the Arbor Day Foundation, trees can help individuals reduce their stress levels while improving water and air quality and also stimulating economic development.
With the creation of Eager Street Park in the middle of Baltimore's Ashland community, residents will gain some of these benefits. In partnership with the Baltimore Tree Trust, a one-acre parcel where 44 derelict rowhomes once stood is now a green space featuring 50 oak, cherry and maple trees funded by BGE through the Arbor Day Foundation.
The trees will shade a new patio, picnic tables, pathways, and create groves of shade and beauty throughout the space. Twenty flowering cherry line Eager Street, and will provide a beautiful frontage to the greenspace.
Partners in the park's construction included Civic Works, which installed paving for paths, patios, and picnic tables and the Ashland Community Association which decided on the park's design and will benefit from the first green space in the area.
The park also helps the City of Baltimore meet regulatory requirements to remove 4,000 acres of existing impervious surface. The permeable green space will filter storm water, contributing to a cleaner Chesapeake Bay.
Aaron Koos, Director of Communications
Yesterday, Baltimore City approved an agreement with BGE on the fees the City charges to run power lines through the City's underground conduit system. This is a win for electricity customers and for the City.
Not only does the agreement lower costs for customers—reducing fees by approximately $17 million annually—it also ensures that the City still has the funding it needs to modernize the conduit system. The outcome will be a safer, more reliable and efficient system.
It's easy to overlook this important piece of infrastructure because it is underground. Hidden below the streets and manhole covers are hundreds of miles of interconnected pipes flowing with the electricity and communications that power our daily lives. Much of the system dates back to early 1900's and like any infrastructure—roads, bridges, water and natural gas—it is in need of continual maintenance and modernization.
As part of the agreement, we will be working with the City to provide input on renovation plans. Not only can we help the work progress, we also can ensure that it is a safe environment for our employees and others who work in and around it every day.
Because conduit is such an important part of the regional power grid, we worked closely with the City to develop a solution. We look forward to continuing to work together to ensure the conduit system meets the needs of communities today and long into the future.
Justin Mulcahy, Sr. Communications Specialist
It’s not every day that three Baltimore legends - and Hall of Famers - get together. But that’s what happened Friday in West Baltimore on a field behind James Mosher Elementary School.
Former Orioles Brooks Robinson, Eddie Murray and Cal Ripken, Jr. joined Mayor-elect Catherine Pugh, City Council President Jack Young and BGE CEO Calvin Butler to break ground on a youth development park.
The site, Eddie Murray Field at BGE Park, is one of BGE’s 200th anniversary legacy gifts and will host after-school programs in addition to James Mosher Baseball, the oldest continuously operating African American youth baseball league in the country.
“This park is a symbol of BGE’s commitment to the Baltimore region, and we are pleased to provide this legacy gift in our 200th anniversary year,” said BGE Chief Executive Officer Calvin G. Butler Jr. “BGE supports initiatives that positively impact the community, especially the lives of young people-our most precious resource.”
Eddie Murray Field at BGE Park will feature a synthetic turf baseball diamond equipped with dugouts, a backstop, and a digital scoreboard. The field will be gifted to and maintained by the Baltimore City Public School system.
“It’s with great pride that we dedicate this field to my dear friend, Eddie Murray,” said Cal Ripken Jr. “Kids in our local communities need our help now more than ever, especially when it comes to finding a positive environment where they can play, learn and grow. Because of our dedicated partners in BGE, we can provide the youth in West Baltimore with a safe place to simply be kids.
BGE is the major sponsor of the project which is expected to be completed sometime in the spring. The field will be the 61st youth development park built through the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation and corporate partnerships.
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