County Promotes Responsible Energy Use During Energy Awareness Month in October
Departments Countywide Dedicated to Energy Awareness & Conservation
Santa Barbara County, October 7, 2015 – The Board of Supervisors will proclaim October as “Energy Awareness Month” at its Oct. 13 board meeting, highlighting the county’s commitment to promoting responsible and efficient energy use and encouraging citizens to do the same.
“The County not only is a leader in promoting the value of energy conservation but also leads by example by implementing many energy saving strategies in our county buildings, our car fleet, and by installing a solar panels in strategic locations” said Janet Wolf, 2nd District Supervisor and Board Chair.
To celebrate energy awareness month, emPower Santa Barbara County will host an Energy & Water Expo 5-7 p.m. Oct. 20 at the County Administration Building — 105 E. Anapamu Street, 1st Floor, Santa Barbara — featuring presentations, exhibit booths and refreshments. Attendees will get tips on improving home efficiency, comfort and indoor air quality. There will also be the chance to win a Nest Learning Thermostat valued at $250. Southern California Gas Company customers can also bring their account numbers to receive a free water and energy saving kit with a free low-flow showerhead and faucet aerators.
As noted in the Proclamation, Santa Barbara County has a long tradition of environmental stewardship and is utilizing numerous programs to promote responsible and efficient energy use within county government and among residents and businesses, including the following.
emPower has helped over 10,000 homeowners with their home energy improvement questions and inquiries and 675 home energy projects have been initiated.
The General Services Department has led efforts to successfully reduce cumulative water consumption across all County owned facilities by 32 percent compared to 2013 usage.
The Public Works Department, Resource Recovery & Waste Management Division, administers the Green Business Program, which provides resources to businesses wanted to be green. Based on an analysis of 66 South Coast businesses that achieved certification during the first five-years of the program, 1,151,262.08 kWh/yr of electricity have been saved.
The South County Energy Efficiency Partnership (SCEEP), of which the County is a partner, is currently organizing a “direct install” program in Goleta, Carpinteria and Santa Barbara. The program offers free light fixtures, low-flow shower heads and faucet aerator to small businesses, mobile home residents and multi-family buildings.
The Housing and Community Development (HCD) Division of the Community Services Department recently facilitated an energy efficiency HVAC/window replacement project with federal CDBG funds in Solvang with Santa Ynez Valley People Helping People. Additionally, HCD administered federal HOME affordable housing funds to two Housing Authority of the County of Santa Barbara (HACSB) projects, Pescadero Lofts in Isla Vista and Santa Rita Village II in Lompoc, which installed solar energy panels to offset energy use.
For more information about Energy Awareness Month events, tips on saving energy, or to speak with a representative of emPower, call (805) 568-3566 or visit the website at www.empowersbc.org.
Energy & Water Expo
5-7 p.m. Oct. 20, 2015
County Administration Building, 105 E. Anapamu Street, 1st Floor, Santa Barbara
About emPower Central Coast
The emPower program offers voluntary incentives, financing and other services to help single-family homeowners in Santa Barbara, Ventura and San Luis Obispo Counties make home energy upgrades easier and more affordable. emPower was originally established by Santa Barbara County to help the community preserve the environment by helping to lower energy consumption and stimulate the economy by creating jobs through innovative, voluntary solutions to support a sustainable building performance market.
emPower is funded by California utility ratepayers and administered by Southern California Gas Company, Southern California Edison Company and Pacific Gas and Electric under the auspices of the California Public Utilities Commission. emPower is also funded by the US Department of Energy Better Buildings program and the California Energy Commission with American Recovery and Reinvestment Act dollars. emPower’s low cost financing is offered in partnership with Coast Hills Federal Credit Union and Ventura County Credit Union. More information at www.empowersbc.org.