For Immediate Release
October 07, 2011
For More Information Contact:
Mayor's Press Office
Today, Mayor Thomas M Menino announced the 600th no-cost home weatherization resulting in over $1 million of annual savings through the City of Boston’s Renew Boston initiative. Since Mayor Menino launched the program in August 2010, Renew Boston has partnered with community-based organizations to lead a grassroots marketing and neighborhood outreach campaign to encourage residents to participate in the program.
Over the past year, 8,000 residents have expressed interest in home weatherization, with over 3,800 households receiving a no-cost home energy assessment. In the coming months, these community-based organizations will continue to sign up Boston residents for free weatherization services to save money and energy this winter with registration ending December 31.
“Renew Boston is proof positive that community networks are effective in scaling up energy efficiency and leveraging local economic benefits for all,” Mayor Menino said. “This is Boston’s triple-bottom-line approach to sustainability: lowering utility bills for residents and businesses, create jobs and increase economic opportunity – all while greening our city.”
Renew Boston has contracted with 13 community organizations to conduct outreach and marketing for Renew Boston this past year. Three organizations are also contracted to provide fulltime outreach work as Renew Boston Neighborhood Network Coordinators including Nuestra Comunidad's Partnership for Greening Blue Hill Avenue, East Boston's Neighborhood of Affordable Housing (NOAH), and the Dorchester Bay Economic Development Corporation.
By working with these neighborhood organizations, the City has reached residents and businesses that have not traditionally accessed weatherization programs, particularly moderate income Bostonians and those for whom English is a second language.
Mayor Menino made the announcement in front of East Boston resident Patricia Cortes-Duran’s home, which recently received weatherization services, including air sealing and insulation that is expected to save 30% on heating and electricity bills this winter. Ms. Cortes-Duran learned about Renew Boston through the Neighborhood of Affordable Housing, which assisted her through each step of the program and provided translation services.
The Renew Boston initiative is an innovative energy efficiency partnership with NSTAR and National Grid that provides free weatherization services for qualified Boston residents with assistance from the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant (EECBG) funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.
The Renew Boston program uses $1.8 million of the $6.5 million EECBG grant to leverage rebates available under existing energy efficiency programs administered by NSTAR and National Grid for Boston residents and businesses. The no-cost energy efficiency improvements for residents are provided by Mass Energy Consumers Alliance and Next Step Living, a Boston-based energy services company.
Renew Boston program participants save immediately upon getting an energy assessment. On average, participants will save about $200 a year with installation of CFL light bulbs, aerators and programmable thermostats and a fully completed weatherization saves up to $600 in heating costs each year. The total annual savings by residents to date through Renew Boston is $1 million when combining savings from energy assessments and weatherization jobs.
The weatherization services are available for limited time for Boston residents within 60-120 percent median income and only to residents that live in buildings with four or fewer units. To determine eligibility and for more information on how to enroll in the residential program Boston residents can call (617) 635-SAVE or visit www.RenewBoston.org.