updated 2/22/2011 9:18:02 AM ET 2011-02-22T14:18:02

ELK GROVE VILLAGE, Ill., Feb. 22, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Lime Energy (Nasdaq:LIME) has completed 2010 as the leading Direct Install Program provider in New York State, in part due to the company's role in National Grid's Small Business Energy Efficiency Program. In 2010, Lime delivered 55,000 megawatt-hours of energy efficiency at the facilities of over 1,800 small business customers in National Grid's Western New York service area, surpassing its goal. As a result, National Grid has increased Lime's energy efficiency upgrade targets in 2011.

Lime was originally selected in 2009 as the exclusive provider for the Small Business Energy Efficiency Program for National Grid's market area in Western New York, where the program is available to customers with an average monthly demand of 100 kW or less. The program provides customer incentives of up to 70 percent of project costs for upgrades including energy efficient lighting, lighting controls and refrigeration measures – with the ability to finance the customer share of the cost on-bill for up to 24 months, interest free.  As the Regional Program Administrator, Lime Energy provides program marketing, project development and engineering, material procurement, database administration and turnkey project implementation.

In addition to helping more than 1,800 small businesses in Western NY to reduce their operating costs by some $6.7 million per year, National Grid's program has created more than 150 jobs directly and indirectly related to energy efficiency in small business. These jobs include 20 locally hired full time Lime employees, as well as electricians and other staff on the teams of 25 subcontractors, who support the Program by installing high-efficiency lighting and controls. The environmental benefit of these projects has been the offset of more than 42,000 tons of CO2 emissions annually, the equivalent of removing more than 8,000 cars from the road.

"This program demonstrates the commitment of New York State and National Grid to tapping into the cleanest and most cost-effective energy resource that we have, which is energy efficiency," stated Adam Procell, President of Lime Energy's Energy Consulting and Technical Services business unit. "The success that Lime and National Grid achieved in 2010 is a testament to just how seriously we take the delivery of this resource, and speaks to the capability and work ethic of our Team members. National Grid and Lime spent much of 2010 helping small businesses, stimulating the local economy, putting people back to work and cleaning the air that we breathe – and we are thrilled to be asked to do even more of this in 2011."

About National Grid

National Grid is an international energy delivery company. In the U.S., National Grid delivers electricity to approximately 3.3 million customers in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York and Rhode Island, and manages the electricity network on Long Island under an agreement with the Long Island Power Authority (LIPA). It is the largest distributor of natural gas in the northeastern U.S., serving approximately 3.4 million customers in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York and Rhode Island. National Grid also owns over 4,000 megawatts of contracted electricity generation that provides power to over one million LIPA customers.

About Lime Energy Co.

Lime Energy is a leading provider of energy efficiency solutions. Our services include integrated energy engineering, consulting and implementation of solutions which enable our customers to reduce their facilities' energy consumption, lower their operating and maintenance costs and reduce their carbon footprint. We focus on solutions which include lighting, mechanical and electrical upgrade services, water conservation, weatherization and renewable project development and implementation. We provide these solutions to the commercial and industrial markets, utilities, energy service companies (ESCOs) and the government sector across a wide range of facilities including high-rise office buildings, manufacturing plants, retail sites, mixed use complexes and large government sites. The company's stock is traded on NASDAQ under the symbol LIME. Additional information is available at the company's website at www.lime-energy.com or by calling 847-437-1666.

The Lime Energy logo is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=5171

FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

This news release includes forward-looking statements within the meaning of the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 including statements that reflect Lime Energy's current expectations about its future results, performance, prospects and opportunities. Lime Energy has tried to identify these forward-looking statements by using words and phrases such as "may," "expects," "anticipates," "believes," "intends," "estimates," "plan," "should," "typical," "preliminary," "hope," or similar expressions. These forward-looking statements are based on information currently available to Lime Energy and are subject to a number of risks, uncertainties and other factors that could cause Lime Energy's actual results, performance, prospects or opportunities in the future to differ materially from those expressed in, or implied by, these forward- looking statements. These risks include those risks referenced in Lime Energy's current Annual Report on Form 10-K and Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q or as may be described from time to time in Lime Energy's subsequent SEC filings; such factors are incorporated herein by reference.

CONTACT: Investor Relations
         Glen Akselrod
         Bristol Capital Ltd.
         (905) 326-1888
         glen@bristolir.com

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