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Metropolitan Housing Coalition Metropolitan Housing Coalition

"At a time when the price of energy continues to rise, affording to keep homes warm becomes an issue that unites a broad range of families, but the burden is disproportionately devastating to low-income residents. MHC is dedicated to ensuring safe, fair and affordable housing choices for all residents, which includes utility costs."

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December

Sub-archives

Dec 30, 2010

Green Jobs--Not Just for Blue States

by Kristin Tracz — last modified Dec 30, 2010 10:46 AM

KySEA member Kristin Tracz wrote this op-ed for RenewableEnergyWorld.com; it is reposted here:

The Climate Bill is dead. Comprehensive action on energy and climate change issues is not likely to come from the federal government any time soon. One of the oft-repeated opposition mantras is that times are too tough to think about climate action – and the costs that curbing emissions might impose would heavily impact those who can afford additional costs the least.

 

Dec 09, 2010

Registration Open: Kentucky Clean Energy Summit

by Kristin Tracz — last modified Dec 09, 2010 09:30 AM

A day to explore effective clean energy policies and their benefits for Kentuckians. Sponsored by the Kentucky Sustainable Energy Alliance.

Save the Date: Jan 31, 2011 for the Kentucky Clean Energy Summit.  The day-long Summit will be held at the Campbell House Crowne Plaza in Lexington.  See http://www.kysea.org/2011-conference for agenda information and registration--we hope you can join us!

Dec 03, 2010

Solar Power in Coal Country

by Nancy Reinhart — last modified Dec 03, 2010 12:22 PM

By Dan Hofmann, President, RegenEn Solar LLC

(Louisville, KY) -- When I launched a solar panel installation company in Louisville, KY, last year, I got a lot of the same questions from friends and family: "solar works in Kentucky?" and "can solar compete with cheap coal?" The answer is yes and yes.

I can't blame them for being skeptics, they are not alone as many people in this city falsely believe that Louisville is too cloudy. The truth is, Louisville receives more sun per year than Germany and Germany leads the world in solar installations.

I was recently checking in on a solar customer that had a system installed a year ago and this is what he said:

"During our first year of going solar our entire electric bill was reduced to ZERO.  In fact, we actually EARNED money this year rather than owing it.  We netted almost $600 and got paid to go solar!  

"That was enough to pay for most of our gas bills this year as well.  For ALL our energy needs this year, BOTH gas and electric, we paid LG&E a grand total of $106.47.  That's less than $10 per month for heating and cooling and all our other energy needs for a 3000+ sq. ft. home!  Needless to say, we're thrilled."

Here's a link to the case study: http://www.regenensolar.com/Testimonial_and_Case_Study.html

There it is in black and white, solar not only works in Louisville but can also help offset your gas bill as well. This is done through Solar Renewable Energy Credits (SRECs) and they, along with the 30% Federal Tax Credit, make solar profitable for the homeowner. I'll cover SRECs and incentives in more detail in future articles.

Editor's note: Dan Hofmann was born and raised in Louisville, KY, and launched a local solar panel installation company in March 2009.
This op-ed is republished here with the author's permission. RegenEn Solar is a KySEA member.


Dec 02, 2010

Federal Program To Make Home Energy Audits Less Expensive

by Nancy Reinhart — last modified Dec 02, 2010 01:10 PM

In November, Vice President Biden joined U.S. Department of Energy Secretary Steven Chu announced the launch of the Home Energy Score pilot program for residential customers.

Professionals will rate participants' homes for energy efficiency on a scale of 1 to 10 (ten being excellent). The rating will show them how their home compares to others in the geographical region. Raters will also provide recommendations that will help to reduce their energy costs and improve the comfort of their homes.

The ratings will be done by RESNET certified Home Energy Survey Professionals or Building Performance Institute certified professionals. The DOE expects that these audits to cost less than private audits currently available to residential customers, primarily because the home rating is based mainly on a visual survey of the home, rather than actual energy efficiency testing.

Once the home rating is complete, qualified households may then apply for up to $25,000 in federally insured, PowerSaver loans at or below market rates to make recommended efficiency upgrades.

The following states and municipalities are participating in the pilot program: Charlottesville, Virginia; Allegheny County, Pennsylvania; Cape Cod and Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts; Minnesota; Omaha and Lincoln, Nebraska; Indiana; Portland, Oregon; South Carolina; Texas; and Eagle County, Colorado.  While Kentucky is not a participant at this point, DOE expects to launch a nationwide program after the pilot program is completed, in late 2011.

As a parallel to the Home Energy Score program, DOE released the Workforce Guidelines for Home Energy Upgrades, a comprehensive set of guidelines for workers in the residential energy efficiency industry. Kentucky now offers comprehensive training for individuals who want to become Building Performance Institute certified professionals. Read more about green careers in Kentucky here.

For more information about the Home Energy Score pilot program, visit HomeEnergyScore.gov. 

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Clean energy stories
Cutting tons of CO2 in Frankfort Cutting tons of CO2 in Frankfort

To address climate change, nine Frankfort and Franklin County organizations partnered this fall on a household greenhouse gas reduction project called “Lighten Up, Frankfort!” 32 of 61 participating households reported cuts in their annual greenhouse gas emissions totaling 317,700 pounds in December 12, 2009.

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