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Weatherization works

Monday, February 06, 2012

Community Action Partnership of Mid-Nebraska has operated the Weatherization Assistance Program, serving 27 counties in south-central Nebraska, since 1975. WAP works to help make homes safer and more energy efficient.

Mid-Nebraska has weatherized more than 11,000 homes since 1975. Nationwide, more than 6.7 million households have been weatherized. This program is making an essential difference for families and seniors in need.

The energy burden for low-income homes is about 14.4 percent compared to 3.3 percent for non-low income households. In 2010, weatherized homes nationally saved $2.1 billion for low-income families.

Weatherization decreases national energy consumption by the equivalent of 24.1 million barrels of oil annually. For every $1 invested in the program, weatherization returns $2.1 to the household and society.

WAP moved up to second out of about 200 federal programs in the number of direct jobs created or retained with American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 funds, at 13,186 for the fourth quarter ending Dec. 31.

Mid-Nebraska created 13 positions to meet the ARRA contract production goals.

Since the first quarter 2010, WAP has been ranked in the top 10 in the number of ARRA jobs created, a clear indication that weatherization works.

In addition, the federal Department of Energy’s goal to weatherize 607,000 homes by the March 2012 deadline was met in December. As of Dec. 31, Mid-Nebraska had weatherized 575 homes with the ARRA funds.

Meredith Collins