The Clean Energy Works Oregon public-private partnership has propelled home energy efficiency far beyond typical weatherization programs. Industry leaders like Hammer & Hand are applying advanced building science to home energy audits and retrofits for big boosts in home performance.
Portland, OR – The Clean Energy Works Oregon program, with its rebates and financing to support home energy audit services and remodels, has garnered well-deserved attention as a national model for home energy efficiency. Through the program, significant support is being devoted to help Oregonians make homes more efficient and comfortable. Clean Energy Works Oregon’s goal is to transform the energy performance of at least 6,000 homes in just 3 years.
“Clean Energy Works Oregon is smart stimulus,” said Sam Hagerman, President of Portland contractor and Clean Energy Works Oregon partner Hammer & Hand. “It creates jobs, increases the comfort in your home, reduces your energy bill and shrinks your environmental footprint.”
Clean Energy Works Oregon, or CEWO, employs a combination of incentives, contractor partnerships and technical support to make home performance affordable and straightforward:
1. Instant rebates. Up to $2000 for a home energy audit & retrofit by a Clean Energy Works Oregon contractor like Hammer & Hand.
2. No-money-down financing. Easy repayment through utility bill, where much of the debt expense is offset by energy bill savings.
3. Easy qualification. A simple online application.
4. Energy Advisor. An independent expert to walk homeowners through the entire process of home energy audit, retrofit and financing.
By bringing together Energy Trust of Oregon, Oregon utilities, financial institutions, local governments and contractors, CEWO builds on a decades-long tradition of inter-agency and inter-governmental cooperation to promote progressive planning and environmental goals in the state. The program began in Portland, a hotbed for sustainable policymaking and for green building practice.
“Because Clean Energy Works Oregon has its roots in Portland, with its vibrant green building scene and leadership in sustainability,” said Hagerman, “the program’s top contractors, like Hammer & Hand, are ahead of the curve in building science. Collectively, we’re taking home energy audits and retrofits to a new level.”
Here is what distinguishes the leading contractors at CEWO:
1. Thought leadership. Expertise in Passive House, the gold standard of advanced building science, provides the knowledge and skills necessary to transform the energy performance of buildings in the most economical of ways. The best contractors have Certified Passive House Consultants and Designers on staff, and are active in the Passive House community of building scientists.
2. Accredited accountability. The Building Performance Institute offers accreditation to contractors who commit to the highest standards and quality assurance protocols. Homeowners are wise to work with one of Oregon’s six BPI Accredited Contractors.
3. Unparalleled craft. The top Clean Energy Works Oregon contractors have assembled a “dream team” of carpenters and tradespeople to ensure that the right expert executes the right task. Online reviews and other testimonials can guide prospective clients to contractors with such teams.
4. Management prowess. The ability to marshal resources efficiently and strategically is key, as demonstrated by a contractor’s track record.
More and more practitioners are coming to the conclusion that to be a good builder in the 21st Century, with rising energy costs and rising performance expectations, contractors really need to be both craftsmen and scientists: nowhere more so than in the realm of home performance.
“Every home energy retrofit represents a key opportunity to revolutionize the performance of a house,” said Hagerman “Today we have the building science to achieve big performance gains cost effectively, and Clean Energy Works Oregon to help underwrite the work. So let’s bring the full force of building science and precision craft to bear on home energy retrofits and really make a difference for clients and the planet.”Back to Field Notes