A Program Full of Bright Ideas for Kentucky: Weatherization Assistance Close-Up Fact Sheet Page: 1 of 2
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A Program Full of Bright Ideas
In 1883, at the Southern Exposition in Louisville, Thomas Edison unveiled the first electric light
to the public. His invention forever changed the way we use energy. Almost 100 years later,
Congress authorized the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Weatherization Assistance
Program (Weatherization) to help improve the way low-income families use energy.
Weatherization reduces energy costs for low-income households by improving the energy
efficiency of their homes, while ensuring their health and safety.
NATIONAL WEATHERIZATION PROGRAM
Homes weatherized in 1999 68,000
DOE allocations in 1999 $135 million
Average annual energy cost savings $300
Average space heating savings 25-30%
Energy benefits returned for $2.10
every $1 invested
Jobs supported 7,000
Homes weatherized in 1999 (with DoE $)
DOE funding in 1999
Clients served in 1999
People with disabilities
Families with children
Home energy bills can be an overwhelming
burden for low-income households. They
typically spend 14% of their total annual income
on energy bills, compared with 3.5% for other
households. This burden can become
unmanageable when energy prices soar.
The high energy burden on low-income families
is a particular concern to Kentucky; the state is
home to some of the poorest families in the
United States. Weatherization reduces home
energy consumption, which provides a
permanent boost to the household's budget.
ILLUMINATING THE PATH TO ENERGY EFFICIENCY
The Department of Community Based Services
administers the state's Weatherization Program
and 24 local agencies provide services to eligible
residents. Weatherization crews use an energy
audit to determine the most cost-effective
measures appropriate for each home.
Diagnostic tools, like the blower door,
manometer, and duct blaster, are used to
identify and mitigate air infiltration and pressure
imbalances. Crews conduct health and safety
tests on appliances to check for carbon
monoxide, an odorless, colorless gas, which
can be deadly in large concentrations.
OFFICE OF BUILDING TECHNOLOGY, STATE AND COMMUNITY PROGRAMS
ENERGY EFFICIENCY AND RENEWABLE ENERGY " U.S. DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY
Typical weatherization measures include
blowing insulation into floors, ceilings, and walls;
evaluating and repairing heating systems; and
sealing air leaks in doors and windows. Clients
are also educated on the proper use and
maintenance of the installed measures.
Kentucky leverages core DOE program funding
to attract additional state and utility funding. The
leveraging collaborations between the utilities
and the Weatherization Program have become an
important source of funding. In 1999, Kentucky
leveraged over $2.7 million, which allowed the
state to weatherize an additional 1,000 homes.
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D&R International. A Program Full of Bright Ideas for Kentucky: Weatherization Assistance Close-Up Fact Sheet, book, October 10, 2001; Golden, Colorado. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc723264/m1/1/: accessed December 15, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.