Baker-Polito Administration Awards $2.3 Million for Programs to Save Low-Income Residents Money on Energy Bills
BOSTON – July 11, 2016 – The Baker-Polito Administration today announced $2.3 million in funding to four organizations that will use clean and efficient energy technologies to lower energy bills for low-income residents and multi-family buildings across the Commonwealth. Part of the Baker-Polito Administration’s Affordable Access to Clean and Efficient Energy Initiative, the funding is expected to save residents and property owners $1.2 million annually on their energy bills.
“These grants will provide cost-saving opportunities to Massachusetts families and low-income residents who need it most,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “Our administration is working to provide everyone in Massachusetts affordable access to the economic and environmental benefits of clean energy and energy efficiency.”
“Families across Massachusetts, regardless of income, should be able to save money and improve their environment through clean and efficient energy technologies,” said Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito. “This assistance will help the Massachusetts residents who are most affected by high energy costs, as well as support the Commonwealth’s growing clean energy industry.”
“The Baker-Polito Administration is committed to supporting programs that connect low- and moderate-income Massachusetts residents with technologies that use less energy and provide the benefits of healthier, more comfortable homes,” said Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) Secretary Matthew Beaton. “These programs will also help reduce the Commonwealth’s greenhouse gas emissions and energy use.”
The funding, provided by the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center (MassCEC), will support:
- Action, Inc. – Statewide - $900,000 – Funding for the installation of high-efficiency air-source heat pumps in for low-income residents living in single-family homes with electric baseboard heating. The heat pump installations will include comprehensive energy efficiency upgrades, including weatherization, lighting and appliance replacements.
- New Ecology, Inc. –Statewide– $600,000 – Funding for the installation of heating and cooling monitoring equipment in approximately 100 low-income, multi-family buildings, with the goal of reducing energy costs by 5 to 20 percent.
- Local Initiatives Support Corporation – Statewide – $600,000 – Funding for up to 30 comprehensive energy audits in affordable multi-family buildings approaching refinancing to demonstrate an integrated approach to systematically achieve deep energy efficiency savings and implement renewable technologies.
- Cape Light Compact – Cape Cod and Martha’s Vineyard – $250,000 – Funding for the installation of solar electricity at low-income, single- and multi-family homes, using solar renewable energy credit (SREC) payments to fund additional installations.
“These programs will help lessen the burden for low-income residents across the Commonwealth who spend a disproportionate share of their income on energy bills,” said MassCEC Interim CEO Steve Pike.
Launched in February, the Baker-Polito Administration’s Affordable Access to Clean and Efficient Energy Initiative is focused on coordinating the agencies that serve the energy and housing needs of the Commonwealth’s low- and moderate-income residents and identifying the most effective strategies to direct funding. The initiative includes an inter-secretariat working group and a $15 million commitment from the Department of Energy Resources (DOER) and MassCEC for clean energy programs to expand opportunities for low- and moderate-income residents.
“Massachusetts is a national leader in energy efficiency, ranking first in the country the past five years,” said DOER Commissioner Judith Judson. “DOER is proud to work with our partners across state government to increase access to our innovative energy savings to all Massachusetts residents, regardless of income.”
“These investments are wins all around,” said State Senator Benjamin Downing (D-Pittsfield), Senate Chairman of the Joint Committee on Telecommunications, Utilities and Energy. “They help hardworking families save a little bit, they help the environment by reducing energy demand and they help the state continue to lead the nation in energy efficiency.”
“Massachusetts is on the cutting edge in creating solutions that drive down our energy costs and shrink our carbon footprint,” stated State Representative Thomas A. Golden, Jr. (D-Lowell), House Chairman of the Joint Committee on Telecommunication, Utilities, and Energy. “Thanks to funding from the Baker Administration’s Affordable Access to Clean and Efficient Energy Initiative, these innovative measures will benefit low-income individuals and families in our communities.”
The grants are funded through MassCEC’s Renewable Energy Trust, which was created by the Massachusetts Legislature in 1998. The trust is funded by a systems benefit charge paid by electric customers of investor-owned utilities in the state, along with municipal electric departments that have opted to participate in the program. The average residential customer contributes 32 cents to the Renewable Energy Trust each month.
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