The non-profit Solar and Energy Loan Fund (SELF) and 40 other state and local governments have completed more than 100,000 building upgrades since 2010, helping to save families and businesses over $730 million on utility bills.
Building on President Obama’s Climate Action Plan and the Administration’s Better Buildings Initiative, Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz announced on May 21, 2014, that the competitively selected Better Buildings Neighborhood Program partners, including SELF, worked to upgrade the energy efficiency of more than 100,000 homes and local buildings and leverage early federal funds to launch sustainable community-based programs across the country.
Over the last four years, these state and local governments have partnered with utilities, nonprofit organizations, financial institutions, and building efficiency experts to upgrade more than 100,000 homes and other buildings.
These activities supported more than $740 million in direct invoices to local workers for energy assessments and upgrades they performed. Local direct investments and savings will continue to grow as leveraged funds are used to finance future energy efficiency project upgrades.
Approximately 30 programs out of the original 40 are continuing without federal support. SELF has raised an additional $1.1 million in loan capital from non-governmental sources, and has expanded operations into five counties in the Treasure Coast and Space Coast regions. SELF also administers St. Lucie County’s Commercial Property-Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) program, which is set to launch in the summer of 2014. SELF helped secure the first $1 million in loan capital for the new commercial energy retrofit program.
Residential Network Marks the Next Phase of the Program
To support continued public-private partnerships on residential energy efficiency, the Energy Department launched the Better Buildings Residential Network, which has already welcomed more than 70 organizations as members, including SELF. The Residential Network provides technical assistance and facilitates peer sharing for a wide range of stakeholders, including contractors, financial institutions, nonprofits, state and local governments, and utilities, who share best practices on home energy efficiency program strategies. Membership is open to all organizations interested in expanding the market for residential energy efficiency. To learn more, visit betterbuildings.energy.gov/bbrn.
Better Buildings Partners' Legacy Lives on Through Solution Center
In addition, SELF and other Better Buildings Neighborhood Program partners' examples, lessons, and resources have been used to develop DOE's newly available Better Buildings Residential Program Solution Center. This online repository will help current and future program administrators and their partners plan, implement, manage, and evaluate residential energy efficiency programs.
Before the Solution Center is made fully available to the public, DOE will host webinar demonstrations of the tool’s functionality, content, and uses. During the demonstration, participants will receive a login to explore the tool. Those interested can register to attend the "Discover the New Better Buildings Residential Program Solution Center" webinar on the following dates:
• Wednesday, June 4, 2014, from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. Eastern
• Thursday, June 19, 2014, from 3:00 to 4:00 p.m. Eastern
Find more information on how the Better Buildings Initiative is saving communities throughout the country energy and money at energy.gov/eere/better-buildings-residential.
For more information about the Solar and Energy Loan Fund (SELF), please visit www.solarenergyloanfund.org or call (772) 468-1818.