On April 21, one day before Earth Day, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) announced that the City of Seattle, Washington has been awarded a $20 million grant through the U.S. Department of Energy’s Retrofit Ramp-up initiative to retrofit local homes and businesses to make them more energy-efficient and save money for their owners and occupants. Senator Murray worked with the Obama Administration to include clean-energy investments in the Recovery Act that would create jobs and boost the economy.
“Washington families know that they are allowing hundreds of dollars a year to float away through their windows, roofs and doors – but they simply can’t afford the up-front costs that would save them money down the road ,” said Senator Patty Murray. “Thanks to this grant, more people in Seattle will be put to work, and more homes and businesses will get the retrofitting they need to save money on their energy costs.”
The City of Seattle, through its Neighborhood Weatherize Every Building Initiative, seeks to drastically reduce carbon emissions by fostering a clean energy economy that relies on energy efficiency as a primary source of power. The City will partner with more than 40 public, private and nonprofit organizations and will target a variety of downtown Seattle neighborhoods including single-family homes as a primary focus, with a secondary focus on retrofit efforts for multifamily, small business (including grocery stores, restaurants), large commercial, hospital/institutional and municipal facilities.
The City plans to promote residential retrofits and reduce carbon emissions, while utilizing a neighborhood-based approach to identify, finance, deliver, and monitor energy efficiency retrofits. The awards are the competitive portion of DOE’s Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant (EECBG) Program, which was funded for the first time under the Recovery Act to help state, local, and tribal communities make strategic investments in improving energy efficiency, reduce energy use and fossil fuel emissions.
As a senior member of the Senate committee overseeing energy funding, Senator Murray worked to ensure that investments in energy efficiency were included in the Recovery Act. Senator Murray voted to pass the Recovery Act on February 13th. The bill was signed into law by President Obama on February 17th, 2009.
***Primary Source: press release from Senator Patty Murray’s office