The City of Chelsea, City of Revere and Town of Winthrop, through the North Suffolk Office of Resilience and Sustainability (the Office) and the Department of Housing and Community Development, have secured $60,000 from the Mass Save Community First Partnership Program to promote residential and small business energy efficiency offerings through the Mass Save Program and Community Action Programs Inter-City (CAPIC) and in partnership with the grassroots environmental justice organization GreenRoots.
Energy efficiency has important financial and public health benefits for residents and small businesses in Chelsea, Revere, and Winthrop. Residents and small businesses can save money on their monthly utility bills, reduce energy consumption, and be more environmentally friendly. Homeowners, tenants, and small businesses may be eligible for no cost or discounted upgrades to lighting, appliances, insulation, and weatherproofing. Notably, this year, the program is offering a new array of affordable options to switch from gas or oil heating to electric heating and cooling systems.
“The transition towards a cleaner and healthier environment in the region cannot be achieved unless we prioritize residents without the means to bring these improvements to their homes and businesses,” said Ibrahim López-Hernández, Sustainability Manager. “Affordably reducing the amount of energy households and small businesses consume is an essential step to provide relief to the most vulnerable residents.”
In collaboration with CAPIC, GreenRoots, and the Sponsors of Mass Save, this grant will support community outreach aimed at bringing awareness to the opportunities offered by the program, including free energy assessments, weatherization, insulation, efficient lighting and appliances, and significant rebates for heating and cooling upgrades. The Community First Partnership Program seeks to focus efforts on Environmental Justice communities, such as the North Suffolk region, using a maximum of $180,000 in funds which the Office expects to receive by 2024.
“Black, Brown, Immigrant and Low-Income communities for too long have carried an unjust energy burden. Programs like MassSave, which would provide much needed savings, are funded by all energy users, however not all are able to reap the benefits” said María Belén Power, Associate Executive Director of GreenRoots. “Eliminating barriers such as language access, income eligibility and absentee landlords will allow residents in our communities to take full advantage of the program.”
“Overshadowed by blistering energy prices, residents and small businesses are facing growing utility expenses, which unevenly affect low and moderate-income residents,” stated Alex Train, Director of Housing & Community Development. “The energy efficiency programs offered through Mass Save and CAPIC can lower monthly utility bills, while improving the environment and indoor comfort levels.”
The Office will oversee efforts between Chelsea, Revere and Winthrop to achieve a total of 600 resident and small business sign ups each year. To reach as many potential beneficiaries as possible, collaboration with community-based organizations is at the center of this program, bringing equity to the forefront of the region by providing bilingual assistance and multilingual educational materials.
Chelsea, Revere and Winthrop residents and small businesses can visit masssave.com/northsuffolk to learn more about energy efficiency opportunities and to schedule a free home or business assessment from an approved vendor.