[Excerpt] Making American homes and buildings more energy efficient presents an unprecedented opportunity for communities throughout the country. The Recovery Through Retrofit Report builds on investments made in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Recovery Act) to expand the home energy efficiency and retrofit market. Home retrofits can potentially help people earn money, as home retrofit workers, while also helping them save money, by lowering their utility bills. By encouraging nationwide weatherization of homes, workers of all skill levels will be trained, engaged, and will participate in ramping up a national home retrofit market.
There are almost 130 million homes in this country. Combined, they generate more than 20 percent of our nation's carbon dioxide emissions, making them a significant contributor to global climate change. Existing techniques and technologies in energy efficiency retrofitting can reduce home energy use by up to 40 percent per home and lower associated greenhouse gas emissions by up to 160 million metric tons annually by the year 2020. Furthermore, home energy efficiency retrofits have the potential to reduce home energy bills by $21 billion annually, paying for themselves over time.
By implementing Recovery Through Retrofit’s recommendations, the Federal Government will lay the groundwork for a self-sustaining home energy efficiency retrofit industry. This Report provides a roadmap of how the Federal Government can use existing authorities and funds to unlock private capital and mobilize our communities.