20,000 Indiana Homes Weatherized by State with Federal Stimulus Funding

We were having a conversation the other day about how environmental issues have rapidly entered and affected our collective consciousnesses. While we still want our minivans and SUVs, we also realize the importance of owning a vehicle that gets 30 miles or more to the gallon.

When we think about all the “Green” initiatives implemented by Indianapolis, Carmel and surrounding communities that we’ve written about lately, such as SustainIndy, it seems clear to us that we are very close to reaching the tipping point where protecting the environment is the primary concern, not an afterthought.

A week or so ago, we wrote about the 16 Park Apartments, Indianapolis’ first “Green” public housing project; 155 new apartments that feature a number of state-of-the-art green elements, including energy-efficient heating and cooling systems and appliances. In a similar light, Courier-Journal.com reports that the State of Indiana has weatherized 20,000 homes using federal stimulus funding, and finished the project five months earlier than expected. There is even money left over to weatherize as many as 3,000 more homes.

Among the items participants may have received for home weatherization included an energy-efficient furnace and/or water heater, attic insulation, and air sealing material for around windows and doors. Some of the individual projects were completed by the Wisconsin Energy Conservation Corp., with additional funding from Citizens Gas and Indianapolis Power & Light Company. Homeowners who received the weatherization services should see a 20% to 30% decrease in their heating and cooling costs.

According to Lt. Gov. Becky Skillman, “Nationwide, this program has been a magnet for waste, fraud, and abuse, but in Indiana we did it right. We reached our goal five months early, we saved money allowing us to complete additional homes, and abuse is nonexistent.”

We recommend that every homeowner should consider weatherizing their home. If the average utility bill currently runs $250/month, you could save as much as $1,000 a year. As an added benefit, your home’s interior will probably feel more comfortable. Call Thiele & Heating & Air Conditioning, (317) 639-1111, to schedule an in-home inspection. We will evaluate your existing ventilation system and make recommendations to help you protect your home from the outside environment and reduce your energy costs.