Today Governor Dayton joined U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu on a conference call to announce that Minnesota has weatherized 18,000 homes, exceeding its goal under the Recovery Act by more than 400.
Under the Recovery Act, Minnesota was awarded $138 million to deliver energy efficient upgrades such as insulation, air-sealing, and more efficient heating and cooling systems in homes across the state.
Read the full announcement below:
Governor Dayton and Energy Secretary Chu Announce Major Recovery Act Milestone: 18,000 Homes Weatherized in Minnesota, 600,000 Nationwide
Recovery Act Program has Reduced Energy Bills for 18,000 Minnesota Households
Washington, DC -- U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu hosted a conference call today with Governor Mark Dayton to announce that states and territories across the nation have reached the goal of weatherizing more than 600,000 low-income homes-- including more than 125,000 multi-family homes like apartment buildings -- more than three months ahead of schedule. Under the Recovery Act, Minnesota was awarded $138 million to deliver energy efficient upgrades such as insulation, air-sealing, and more efficient heating and cooling systems in homes across the state. Through October, Minnesota has upgraded more than 18,000 homes, exceeding its goal under the Recovery Act by more than 400, and will continue weatherizing homes for the next few months with Recovery Act funds. The state reached this major milestone as part of its efforts with the Department to save energy and reduce home utility bills for families, while creating jobs in communities throughout the country.
Through the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and supported by the Department's Weatherization Assistance Program, Minnesota set the aggressive goal to reduce energy waste in more than 17,500 low-income homes. The program is helping families save money on their energy bills and creating jobs locally -- putting carpenters, electricians, and others back to work. While the original target date for completing 600,000 weatherization upgrades nationwide and more than 17,500 in Minnesota was the end of March, 2012, the Department announced today that they have met those objectives more than three months ahead of schedule.
"Today the Department of Energy marks a major milestone: we have weatherized more than 600,000 low-income homes and put thousands of people to work through the Recovery Act," said Secretary Chu. "Across America, DOE's successful Weatherization Assistance Program has increased the demand for energy-saving products and services, created thousands of skilled jobs, and helped families to reduce energy waste and save money."
"DOE's weatherization program has been extremely important to Minnesota as a cold weather state. In a normal year, our weatherization program would weatherize about 3,000 homes in Minnesota, but thanks to Secretary Chu and President Obama and this initiative of DOE, we have already weatherized over 18,000 homes using $124 million in the stimulus funding from the DOE," said Governor Dayton. "This has been a tremendously important and valuable program that has supported jobs in Minnesota, and has helped Minnesota families see real savings in their energy costs, and we are grateful for the DOE's efforts."
On average, the program reduces energy consumption for low-income families by up to 35 percent, saving them more than $400 on their heating and cooling bills in the first year alone. Nationwide, the weatherization of 600,000 homes is estimated to save more than $320 million in energy costs in just the first year.
DOE's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy invests in clean energy technologies that strengthen the economy, protect the environment, and reduce America's dependence on foreign oil. Learn more about DOE's effort to enable low-income families to permanently reduce their energy bills by making their homes more energy efficient.