Program reduces carbon footprint, increases energy savings
Published 10:12 am Friday, October 23, 2015
A new program is now available for Freeborn-Mower Cooperative Services members who have natural gas service from Minnesota Energy Resources.
The Center for Energy and Environment has partnered with the two organizations to offer the Community Energy Services program to Freeborn-Mower Cooperative Services members.
An energy audit was held Thursday at former District 27A Rep. Dan Dorman’s approximately 4,200 square-foot home in Albert Lea Township to show the benefits.
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A device was set on the front door, and the house was de-pressurized, indicating where air was leaking in the home.
Greg Ernst, energy consultant at G.A. Ernst & Associates, identified problems with the duct work in the ceiling.
“Absolutely, in a heartbeat,” Dorman said on whether he would advise energy audits to anyone else. “We suspected something was wrong, and we wanted to look at it. We should have done this four years ago.”
Dorman’s home was built in 2002, and he expects he will pay less in utility bills once the problem is fixed.
Included in the program is a community energy workshop and $50 home energy audits.
According to the Center for Energy and Environment, the program offers a tremendous value for residents, including at no additional charge the installation of energy efficiency materials, including showerheads, faucet aerators, water heater pipe wrap, measurement of home air leaks, insulation inspection and a combustion safety test on the home heating system and water heater.
Anyone looking to get started with the program is advised to attend the community energy workshop at 6:30 p.m. Monday at Albert Lea High School, said Stacy Camp, recruitment and outreach coordinator at the Center for Energy and Environment.
Participating homeowners will be given a list of recommended energy improvements. The home energy audit also qualifies homeowners for specialized energy financing and utility rebates.
Camp said energy audits can help people reduce their carbon footprint, lower their energy bills and increase energy savings.