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West Hartford Wins Competitive Grant for Residential Energy Efficiency Outreach

Sealing window cracks to keep out air is one of the activities performed during an energy audit. Courtesy photo

Funding has been awarded through the Energize Connecticut Community Partnership Initiative.

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The Town of West Hartford was recently chosen by the sponsors of Energize Connecticut, Eversource, and United Illuminating, Southern Connecticut Gas, and Connecticut Natural Gas, subsidiaries of AVANGRID, Inc., to receive a $20,000 grant through the Community Partnership Initiative.

In an effort to make energy efficiency affordable and accessible to all, this new program strives to provide local community groups, nonprofit organizations, and municipalities with grants to further energy efficiency adoption and educate residents and businesses on the energy efficiency solutions available to them. West Hartford’s grant will fund a HeatSmart campaign run by local nonprofit People’s Action for Clean Energy (PACE).

This grant supports outreach to encourage participation in the Home Energy Solutions program which assesses home energy use and provides on the spot weatherization services. The program also provides a wide variety of rebates and incentives for energy efficiency measures such as insulation. Participating residents will work with an Eversource approved contractor who will help guide weatherization and other home energy efficiency measures. In addition, the program provides education on clean heating and cooling options using heat pump technology.

“West Hartford has worked hard in recent years to improve the energy efficiency of its municipal operations,” said West Hartford Mayor Shari Cantor regarding the grant award. “The Community Partnership Initiative allows us to extend this work to our residents through the HeatSmart West Hartford program. The funding will be used to conduct an extensive outreach campaign designed to increase awareness and uptake of this Energize Connecticut offering.”

West Hartford Energy Specialist, Catherine Diviney, is one of the HeatSmart team members working on the campaign. “The Town of West Hartford has recently adopted a Clean Energy Plan,” she said. “Our goal is for 100% of the energy use in our community to come from clean, renewable energy. Home energy efficiency is an important first step. Not only can a Home Energy Solutions evaluation help save money on energy bills and make the home more comfortable, but it can reduce the home’s greenhouse emissions.”

In its application West Hartford set out ambitious goals and outlined outreach and education strategies. The program will tap into existing community networks and community partners. The goal of the program is that every household in West Hartford will be aware of programs available to them.

Participants chose to work towards one of four energy efficiency goals. West Hartford’s HeatSmart campaign focuses on increasing participation in the Home Energy Solutions program by more than 10%.

“The Community Partnership Initiative is a unique way to reach people in different communities, further energy efficiency program participation, and help them lower their energy bills and usage year-round – it’s a win-win for all involved,” said Eversource Executive Vice President of Customer Experience and Energy Strategy Penni Conner.

“We are eager to work with the selected participants to make equity in energy efficiency a reality in our communities, and the participants represent a range of organizations who can help make that happen,” said Frank Reynolds, president and CEO of CNG, SCG and UI. “We have no doubt that each will go above and beyond with their energy efficiency initiatives.”

All are invited to register through the website www.HeatSmartCT.org/WestHartford or by calling 860-580-9076.

For more information on the Community Partnership Initiative, please visit EnergizeCT.com/your-town/community-partnership.

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