For Immediate Release
December 01, 2010
For More Information Contact:
Mayor's Press Office
Mayor Thomas M. Menino today announced that the City of Boston’s Renew Boston initiative - in partnership with NSTAR and National Grid - will launch a community-based marketing and outreach strategy deployed by 13 community-based organizations in order to connect as many as 3,000 Boston households with no-cost weatherization services.
Renew Boston, a service of the City of Boston in partnership with NSTAR and National Grid, is the nation’s first partnership between municipal government and investor-owned utilities for co-delivery of energy efficiency home improvements. The program uses $1.8 million in funds from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act’s (ARRA) Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant (EECBG) to leverage rebates available under existing energy efficiency programs administered by NSTAR and National Grid for Boston residents within 60-120% of the state median income.
The no-cost energy efficiency improvements are provided by Mass Energy Consumers Alliance and Next Step Living, a Boston-based energy services company. The Mayor expects Renew Boston to complete more than $11.9 million in energy efficiency improvements throughout the city, save Boston residents over $3.4 million in annual energy costs, and also to create 58 local green jobs.
To make residents aware of Renew Boston, the Mayor is relying on trusted community-based organizations to engage residents in ways that build on work they already perform in the areas of health, wellness, and community and workforce development. Community groups will ensure that Renew Boston’s marketing and outreach work reaches residents who have traditionally not accessed weatherization programs, particularly moderate income Bostonians and residents for whom English is a second language.
The Mayor’s goal is for the program to provide as many as 3,000 Boston households with no-cost air sealing and insulation services that can lead to energy use reductions of 15%, or more, annually. “With this funding, Renew Boston continues to create local green jobs,” says Mayor Thomas M. Menino. “The work that these community organizations will perform will help thousands of Bostonians to save energy and money.” The Mayor has long recognized the need for the City of Boston to help Bostonians with their energy needs, including his Food and Fuel campaign and Boston Buying Power, the City’s bulk power purchasing program for small businesses.
“In Boston, where space heating is the largest share of energy bills, and older building stock accounts for nearly 70% of greenhouse gas emissions, Renew Boston will not only help residents with their fuel bills, but will help meet the City’s climate change goals, “ says Jim Hunt, the City’s Chief of Environmental and Energy Services,
The partners named by Mayor Menino today include:
- Dorchester Bay Economic Development Corporation,
- Allston-Brighton Community Development Corporation,
- Urban League of Eastern Massachusetts,
- Nuestra Comunidad CDC and YouthBuild Boston’s Partnership for Greening Blue Hill Avenue,
- Boston Climate Action Network,
- Boston Workers Alliance,
- BOLD Teens,
- Dudley Square Neighborhood Initiative,
- Greater Four Corners Action Coalition,
- Green Beginnings Institute,
- Boston Building Materials Co-op,
- Neighborhood of Affordable Housing,
- Viet-AID Community Development Corporation
“Our organization – and others I speak with - are focused on building sustainability into the scope of services that they provide in the community,” notes Sustainability Coordinator Gustavo Quiroga of the Allston-Brighton CDC, “and these grants are an opportunity to begin developing long-term programming even as we serve our traditional constituents in a new way.”
Mayor Menino also recently announced Green Building 101, a low-cost, all-day workshop, offering Bostonians an insider’s knowledge into the growing field of green jobs in Boston. The event is one in a series of events the Mayor’s Office of Jobs and Community Services will be convening to help position Bostonians to secure green economy jobs, created in part by the demand for Renew Boston’s services. The December 10 event is a project of the Massachusetts State Energy Sector Partnership, funded by a $6 million U.S. Department of Labor Employment & Training Administration grant, and organized by a partnership which includes the Mayor’s Office of Jobs and Community Services; Renew Boston; SkillWorks; and The Green Roundtable. Information on Green Building 101 is available at www.nexusboston.org/events, or by contacting Matt Bruce at (617) 918-5225.