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All across America, low-income families are benefiting from reduced energy costs and improved comfort in their homes thanks to the Energy Department’s Weatherization Assistance Program. Today marks the one millionth home weatherized since the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act work began in April 2009.
The weatherization of one million homes in three and a half years is an important achievement for our program. Since 1976, the weatherization program has helped more than 7 million families save money on their energy bills while creating jobs for American workers, supporting small businesses and American manufacturing, and reducing pollution. Weatherizing these homes has supported tens of thousands of American construction jobs -- an average of more than 12,000 direct jobs per quarter from 2009 to 2012 alone. More than 90 percent of the materials used to weatherize homes -- like insulation and high efficiency windows -- are made in the U.S., helping support thousands of domestic manufacturing jobs. In addition, every home that is weatherized saves that family an average of up to $400 a year on their heating and cooling bills.
The weatherization program is particularly important to our friends, neighbors, and family members -- many of them seniors -- who are struggling economically. Studies show that lower income households spend significantly more of their total income on their energy bills than other households -- nearly 14 percent compared to just over three percent for other households.
The Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy is proud of achieving the one millionth home milestone, which would not have been possible without the hard work and dedication of a vast network of state weatherization agencies and energy offices, community action agencies and other community-based organizations, contractors, manufacturers, and skilled American workers. Today is a day to celebrate all of them as we recognize the enormous economic, community, and environmental benefits of the Energy Department’s Weatherization Assistance Program.