City of New Orleans Launches Home Energy Efficiency Program

WASHINGTON, D.C. – October 4, 2011 – (RealEstateRama) — U.S. Department of Energy Secretary Steven Chu today applauded the launch of the City of New Orleans’ NOLA Wise, one of the Department’s Better Buildings Neighborhood projects. The $1.7 million initiative, funded by the Recovery Act, will allow participants to increase the comfort, safety, and affordability of their homes through energy-saving home improvements. Through DOE’s Better Buildings Neighborhood Program, 41 projects are bringing state and local governments and partnering organizations together to provide high quality, accessible and affordable energy improvements to homes and businesses across the nation to reduce energy use and save families money on their energy bills.

“This program encourages New Orleans homeowners to improve the efficiency of their homes in order to save money by saving energy,” said Secretary Chu. “Across the U.S., programs like NOLA Wise are increasing the demand for energy-saving products and services, creating jobs, and helping families to reduce energy waste and save money.”

Nola Wise, managed by the environmental nonprofit Global Green USA, helps homeowners through every step of the energy efficiency improvement process. Through the NOLA Wise program, New Orleans homeowners can learn about energy efficiency, gain access to home energy assessors and nationally-certified green building contractors, and qualify for low-interest loans to make energy-efficient home upgrades. NOLA Wise also provides a project management service to ensure that homeowners receive a professional and thorough home energy assessment and high-quality work from approved contractors. NOLA Wise expects to expand its market from residential clients to commercial properties in its second year.

The Better Buildings Neighborhood Program is part of the Better Buildings Initiative—a program within the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy that is lowering barriers to energy efficiency in buildings. Funded with over $500 million from DOE, the Better Buildings Neighborhood Program will leverage an estimated $3 billion in additional resources over the next three years. The program aims to save consumers about $65 million annually on energy bills.

Better Buildings community partnerships support growth in the energy efficiency upgrade market by implementing innovative approaches to deliver energy improvements, bringing real solutions to market, and defining sustainable business models. The lessons learned from Better Buildings programs will be shared as promising approaches for improving the delivery of comprehensive energy efficiency upgrade programs that can be adopted and implemented by communities and administrators across the nation.

To learn more about how The U.S. Department of Energy’s Better Buildings program is changing lives by changing buildings, visit the Better Buildings website.

To learn more about DOE’s Recovery Act investments, please visit DOE’s Recovery Act website.

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