Minnesota Conservation Corps has partnered with Neighborhood Energy Connection in Saint Paul to launch a home-energy conservation program. The four-member Home Energy Squad is installing compact fluorescent light bulbs, exterior-door weather stripping, programmable thermostats, efficient showerheads, water-heater insulation blankets and faucet aerators. In the programs’ first six weeks, the squad worked in 70 homes, installed 2100 conservation measures and saved an estimated $10,500 on homeowners’ energy bills. By the end of the year, they expect to triple this savings. Besides reducing electricity and natural gas use, the measures reduce carbon-dioxide emissions and conserve resources.
Home Energy Squad members receive energy conservation, auditing and management training, which prepares them for green industry jobs. Currently Chris Vanecek, Kristi Knudson, Danielle Butenhoff, and Ben Rabe are serving one-year terms. The Conservation Corps is currently accepting applications for four more positions, serving January through December 2010.
NEC has provided custom energy consultations and conservation services for 24 years and serves thousands of homes annually. The organization also founded and manages the Twin Cities’ first car-sharing network, HOURCAR. More information is available at TheNEC.org.