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Project Porchlight: Improving Energy Efficiency in Monroe County

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 30, 2016

For more information, please contact: City of Bloomington Economic & Sustainable Development Specialist Jackie Duemler, duemlerj@bloomington.in.gov, 812-349-3558

Project Porchlight: Improving Energy Efficiency in Monroe County

Bloomington, Ind. - The Monroe County Energy Challenge (MCEC) and Duke Energy partnered to provide over 34,500 free LED light bulbs during Project Porchlight, a 1- month initiative aimed at improving energy efficiency in Monroe County. The direct impact of the program is an annual savings of up to $230,000.

"We wanted to show people that making a single, simple change can make a big impact, especially when done on a community scale," said Jackie Duemler, Energy Outreach Coordinator at the City of Bloomington.

Project Porchlight was patterned after a successful Canadian effort designed to engage local residents with energy-saving opportunities in their home. During the month of October, MCEC distributed 1,500 free LED light bulbs through 16 community events, including four energy fairs hosted at neighborhood parks and local hardware stores. Each energy fair included a Weatherization Station that taught participants how to caulk, weatherize a window and prepare their home for winter. Attendees also signed up for free home energy assessments, pedaled energy bikes and participated in other educational activities. Bloomington Hardware, Black Lumber and True Value each hosted an energy fair and volunteer groups helped conduct door-to-door outreach in high impact neighborhoods.

"I am proud that so many community members are taking strides to make Bloomington more sustainable. Through simple things each of us can do in our homes like weatherizing, to the larger-scale efforts like adding solar panels to our roofs, we can decrease our carbon footprint and better protect our environment," said Bloomington Mayor John Hamilton.

The MCEC partnership with Duke Energy dramatically increased the reach and impact of the initiative. In October, Duke sent mailers to many Bloomington residents with an offer for 6 free LED light bulbs. The program provided over 33,000 LED light bulbs in the community, resulting in significant savings for customers.

Monroe County is one of 50 communities competing for the $5 million Georgetown University Energy Prize. The Georgetown University Energy Prize is a nationwide, two-year energy savings competition focused on reducing natural gas and electricity use in residences, municipal buildings, and K-12 schools.

To find out more about the Monroe County Energy Challenge, free home assessments, or to volunteer, visit mocoenergychallenge.org/ or call 812-349-3558.

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