12-8-10: A Second Wind for the Weatherization Industry?

December 8, 2010 at 8:05 am 1 comment

In case you hadn’t noticed, a few days ago Maryland officially got cold. Low 30s, biting wind, snow flurries—exactly the conditions that home weatherization was meant for.

The U.S. Department of Energy’s Weatherization Assistance Program provides money for people with low incomes to weatherproof their houses – insulate attics and walls, patch leaks, tune up furnaces—the kind of work that saves a house an average of about $400 on utilities a year.

The program got a $5 billion boost when the Obama administration’s stimulus act passed in February of 2009.  The Department of Energy estimates that 250,000 homes nationwide have been weatherized with this money. The program’s rollout, though, was widely criticized for being sluggish.

For the next installment of our series “Show Me the Stimulus,” reporter Bruce Wallace looks at weatherization efforts in Maryland, and their future once stimulus money dries up.

Maryland Housing and Community Development’s ARRA Weatherization Assistance Program page

DOE’s ARRA page

ProPublica Weatherization Map

Maryland’s Local Weatherization Agencies

Joel Yesley’s Weatherization Research for the Maryland Budget and Tax Policy Institute

GAO’s “Recovery Act: One Year Later” addresses some of the causes for weatherization’s slow start

Entry filed under: Energy, On Air, Show Me the Stimulus. Tags: , , , , .

12-8-10: Come On Down To the Basement 12-10-10: Poetry in Science

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