Energy Efficiency for Older Cities
When discussing energy issues as they relate to older communities, an often-mentioned concern revolves around energy costs for the residents. Within cities in the Northeast of the United States, many households spend close to $1000 every winter on their energy bill. These high costs have driven some cities to implement energy saving strategies. For those familiar with the Revitalizing Older Cities Initiative of the Northeast Midwest Institute, such leadership on the part of the cities should not be surprising, as the Institute considers older industrial communities as “well-placed for leading the nation in the development and implementation of a national sustainable energy strategy.”
Here in the Lehigh Valley, an initiative in Easton to green some of the housholds within the West Ward hopes to address both the rising costs of energy and the environmental issues that come along with using traditional oil and gas sources. The program, funded partly by Neighborhood Stabilization Program funds, aims at establishing more energy-efficient buildings within the community – as a means of lowering costs for families and redeveloping the neighborhood. At a press conference for the launch of the program, it was mentioned that the funds could be used to install solar panels and environmentally-friendly carpeting. Overall, over a dozen homes will be updated by the $1 million in funding available for the project.
This program is a significant step in the right direction for older communities who are struggling to modernize and keep down basic energy costs. To learn more about the West Ward Neighborhood Partnership that is guiding this effort, I encourage you to visit their website.
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