October 30th marks annual Weatherization Day; Northwest Community Action celebrates making homes more healthy and energy efficient
The Weatherization Assistance Program, the nation’s largest residential energy efficiency program, was initiated by the U.S. Department of Energy in 1976 to help states and communities assist low-income families in having more energy-efficient, safe, and healthy homes.
The average American family spends more than $1,740 annually on utility bills, with some low-income families in Minnesota seeing an energy burden of 20-25 percent of their income. The Weatherization Assistance Program, using federal, state, local, and private dollars, benefits households and communities across the nation by providing cost-effective, energy efficient modifications to homes, including insulation upgrades and more, occupied by eligible low-income Americans.
Administered by the Minnesota Department of Commerce in cooperation with the network of local service providers, community action agencies, non-profit organizations and tribal and local governments serving the entire state, this program has reduced the energy costs by an average of 15 percent in more than 49,000 homes since 2005, positively impacting more than 135,000 Minnesotans.