Weatherization reduces carbon footprint, financial burden Posted: November 01, 2012

Our own Ron Borngesser wrote into the Oakland Press with his two cents about Weatherization. You can also view the article on the Oakland Press website by clicking here. Enjoy!

 

Energy efficiency has taken a spotlight in our society in the last few years. An energy efficient home not only leaves less of a carbon footprint but it is more financially secure. OLHSA, A Community Action Agency focuses on the impact energy efficiency has on low-income families and seniors in its Weatherization Assistance Program.

Weatherization home improvements do more than make a home more comfortable. Most importantly, they make a home more affordable. Since 2009 when the Weatherization Assistance Program received $5 billion in funds from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), the program has weatherized over one million homes nationally. We’re proud that 3,967 of them were weatherized by OLHSA.

Exciting evolution has happened in Weatherization. Sustainable Energy Resources for Consumers (SERC) offers high-tech Weatherization and includes solar PV, thermal hot water and hot air systems for eligible low-income housing.  A project at Oxford Square Apartments was highlighted earlier this month showcasing these technologies and celebrating Weatherization Month. The residents were happy to tell their stories and all about how the improvements have bettered their financial situations.

With SERC technologies and standard Weatherization improvements including CFL light bulbs, Energy Star refrigerators, insulation, and programmable thermostats the residents at Oxford Square can expect to see a 25 to 35 percent reduction in their utility bills. 

As Governor Snyder said in this year’s Weatherization Month Proclamation, Weatherization is critical to Michigan. When the average low-income family spends between 20 and 40 percent of their earning on utility bills, little is left for other expenses.  Weatherization lowers the burden of utilities on low-income families and seniors and allows them to spend their money on other basic needs like food and transportation.

As Weatherization Month is coming to a close and Weatherization Day, October 30, is just around the corner it is important to remember the impact Weatherization has in our community. ARRA funding will end after this year and we’re not yet sure how funding for the program will look after the upcoming election. What we are sure about is that this incredible program works.

Know a family or individual in Oakland County interested in the Weatherization Assistance Program, please contact OLHSA at 248.209.2600 or visit www.olhsa.org.