01/13/11 Northern Indiana Public Service Company and the NiSource Charitable Foundation today announced an environmental initiative with The Nature Conservancy in support of a local Indiana restoration project.

For each customer who enrolls in NIPSCO’s free Direct e-Bill paperless billing service between January 1, 2011, and April 1, 2011, the company will contribute $10 to The Nature Conservancy’s freshwater conservation project at Hoosier Prairie Nature Preserve, located in Indiana.

Human consumption has placed enormous demands on freshwater supplies, and experts predict that within the next 50 years more than half of humanity will be living with water shortage – unless something is done now.

A check will be presented to the Indiana Chapter of The Nature Conservancy on or before Earth Day, April 22, 2011.

About Hoosier Prairie

Hoosier Prairie Nature Preserve, located in Indiana along the Southern Lake Michigan Rim, is home to a wide variety of plants and animals adapted to an array of wet or dry conditions. They flourish in this unique dune and wetland topography.

Through customers’ participation, the funds from NIPSCO and NiSource will help the Conservancy control a host of non-native, invasive plants threatening to overrun our native plants – work that is being accomplished through a partnership with the Indiana Department of Natural Resources.

Signing-up for Direct E-bill is Free and Simple

NIPSCO’s free electronic billing service is a convenient way customers can manage their account and help the environment at the same time.   Simply visit NIPSCO.com and select “Manage Your Account” to sign up for free paperless Direct e-Bill services.

Instead of receiving a paper bill in the mail, customers receive an e-mail notification that their utility bill is available to view on NIPSCO.com the same day it’s rendered. 

Customers can pay their bill on-line at no charge and perform other business on their account, such as signing up for the Budget Payment Plan. The e-mail notification also includes a link to electronic versions of monthly bill inserts, customer newsletters and other important account information.

According to a recent survey, the average household receives approximately 19 bills and statements and makes approximately seven paper payments per month. Collectively, the production and transportation of those paper bills, statements and payments consume nine million trees, 755 million pounds of paper and 512 million gallons of gasoline.

Learn more about The Nature Conservancy’s efforts to conserve and protect the world’s fresh water supply at Nature.org.