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Big win for energy-efficient homes in the US

Words by Smiley Team

On 30 March, the Biden administration announced funding for a project intended on improving the energy efficiency of low-income areas by retrofitting them with more energy-conscious technology. 

The plan is to retrofit up to 450,000 homes around the US in a program called the Weatherization Assistance Program, which currently only serves about 38,000. This will include new appliances, updated heating and cooling systems, and improved insulation, among other things. 

“Home energy retrofits and upgrades – like electrification, heat pumps, LED lighting, insulation, and sealing up leaks – can slash monthly energy bills for families and improve the air we breathe,” U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm said in a statement. “We will be able to help households in disadvantaged communities, reduce carbon emissions, and generate good-paying local jobs in every corner of America.”  

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The plan will be pushing President Biden’s pledges at cutting emissions, which include cutting them in half by 2030 and reaching a net zero by 2050. The program also implements the administration’s Justice40 commitment, which requires federal agencies to deliver at least 40% of benefits from specific funding to disadvantaged communities. 

“We know just how critically important that is because scientists tell us that this is the decisive decade,” President Biden said at a 2021 Virtual Leaders Summit on Climate. “This is the decade we must make decisions that will avoid the worst consequences of a climate crisis.”

What is the 'Weatherization Assistance Program'?

The Weatherization Assistance Program began in 1976 as an initiative to lower utility costs for low-income areas and has reported $372 in annual energy savings for families, according to the Energy Department. 

“Today’s funding announcement will transform the WAP program by expanding weatherization services to ten times current funding levels, creating jobs, and reestablishing economic opportunities in communities that have been hit the hardest by economic, racial, and environmental injustices,” the Energy Department said in a statement.

Inspired to act?

DONATE: You can donate to the Clean Air Task Force, which is focused on working toward providing clean air for citizens around the US. 

SUPPORT: check out Evergreen Collaborative, an organization that works to bridge the gap between climate activists and the US government. 


This article aligns with the following UN SDGs

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