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Wednesday, September 14, 2011

SMUD Program Rewards Energy Efficiency

SMUD Program Rewards Energy Efficiency
By Howard Posner, SMUD Ward 3 Director

If you’ve ever thought about making energy-efficient upgrades to your home to help lower your monthly electricity bills, this is the time to do it.
SMUD secured a $20 million dollar federal grant through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act that will help fund an innovative energy efficiency program. With an array of generous rebates that could reach $9,000 per home and $2,800 per apartment unit, SMUD’s Home Performance Program aims to retrofit about 2,000 single-family-homes and 2,500 multifamily homes with energy-saving upgrades.
Earlier this year, SMUD nearly doubled the rebates available to customers who improve the efficiency of their residences through such measures as duct sealing, new insulation, and new heating and air conditioning systems.
Here’s how the program works for single-family homes: Efficiency improvements are determined after the home is inspected by a qualified energy professional. The inspection normally costs about $500 but is being offered for just $99 through the Home Performance Program.
After the inspector makes recommendations, the homeowner can decide what upgrades to make, with rebates increasing on a sliding scale. Upgrades that boost the home’s efficiency between 20 and 50 percent will qualify for rebates ranging from $2,500 to $9,000. Projects that don’t meet 20 percent may still qualify for a $1,500 rebate under certain circumstances.
Financial incentives for multifamily dwellings are paid to the retrofit contractor to help offset the cost of efficiency upgrades.
For more information on SMUD’s Home Performance Program, please visit www.smud.org.

clear skies,
Doug Reynolds

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