For more information, contact: Sierra Club National Contact: Kristina Johnson
(415) 977-5619, Texas Contact: Cyrus Reed, Lone Star Sierra Club, (512)
Communities Team up to Promote Clean Energy Jobs on Weatherization Day
Austin, TX/Washington, DC - On Friday, October 30, National Weatherization Day, the Sierra Club is joining community partners, service providers, small businesses, union members and local officials in towns across the country to highlight the benefits of investing in the energy efficiency of our homes.
"Residential buildings are responsible for a staggering
twenty percent of global warming pollution. Many families
lose money on energy bills each month because their homes
aren't energy efficient," said Sierra Club Clean Energy Solutions Representative Allison Forbes. "Weatherizing
homes is one simple solution that will create thousands of
good jobs, put money in the pockets of American families,
and help fight global warming."
It is estimated that retrofitting U.S. homes could reduce associated greenhouse gas emissions by up to 160 million metric tons annually by 2020.
“No state could benefit more from weatherization
monies and programs then Texas,” said Sierra Club Lone Star Chapter Conservation Director Cyrus Reed.
“With high electricity bills, a high
consumption of energy and a reliance on dirty coal plants
for more than a third of our electricity needs, making our
homes more efficient saves money, creates jobs and helps
cut down on dirty global warming emissions.”
With an allotment of $326 million over two years, Texas will receive more money from the American Recovery and Renewal Act than any other state except New York through the Department of Energy’s Weatherization Assistance Program.
Some 50 different entities including cities, non-profit organizations and network service providers have applied and will receive millions of dollars through the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs to weatherize at least 70,000 homes over the next two years.
Sierra Club has released a brief report on which cities and agencies will be running programs using the “stimulus” money in Texas.
The Department of Energy (DOE) recently announced a new $390 million "Retrofit Ramp-Up" program that will deploy innovative approaches to energy efficiency building retrofits, as well as a $64 million program for energy efficiency funding in cities, counties, and Indian tribes.
Several years ago, the Department of Energy designated October 30 National Weatherization Day, an opportunity to improve the public's understanding of the benefits weatherization to low-income people and communities.
This Friday, Sierra Club's Cool Cities Program and Blue Green Alliance partners will be hosting and participating in Weatherization Day events in cities across the country.
In Texas, Sierra Club is working with local officials to set up weatherization workshops and is hosting Clean Energy Bike Tours & Hikes to educate Texans about the importance of energy efficiency and weatherization.
-In Denver, the Sierra Club will celebrate the graduation of local workers from a weatherization training program offered by the Laborers International Union of North America (LIUNA).
-In Charlotte, North Carolina, volunteers will canvass neighborhoods, reaching out to low-income and elderly residents with information on weatherizing homes to save on energy costs.
-In Detroit, Sierra Club will participate in a "utilities summit" for residents to learn about services available for retrofitting homes. The city, where nearly 40 percent of the population is now below the poverty level, has secured funding to upgrade roughly 4,000 homes.