Did you know that homes and buildings are Connecticut’s second-largest source of greenhouse gas emissions? That means cutting the fossil fuels it take to heat and cool them is key to fighting climate change.
We can do it—by improving energy efficiency and transitioning to renewable thermal heating and cooling. Connecticut Fund for the Environment advocates for public policies that will make it easy for families and businesses to live and work in more sustainable, energy efficient buildings.
The “First Fuel”
Energy efficiency creates more savings than any other single fuel source. By reducing demand for energy, energy efficiency relieves pressure on the electrical grid, reduces our dependence on fossil fuels, and lowers families’ bills.
Saving energy also grows Connecticut’s job force! A 2017 federal report found that the design, manufacture, and installation of energy efficiency products and services accounted for nearly 34,000 Connecticut jobs.
Cheaper than renewables, more job-intensive than fossil fuels, it’s the easiest way to save money for ratepayers, reduce air pollution, and create steady local jobs.
Unfortunately, the state has repeatedly taken money that makes these programs possible. Why? To plug unrelated budget holes. Taking savings from low-income families and weakening programs that cost-effectively combat climate change are not wise budget decisions. CFE fights each year to defend these funds and the critical programs they support.
Putting Greener Buildings into Action
- In 2009, CFE helped pass Connecticut’s Green Buildings Tax Credit Program, which provides a tax credit to developers who design and construct buildings with best practices around energy use, water use, and environmental quality.
- The Lead By Example program reduces the state’s energy bills by reducing energy waste in state buildings.
- Connecticut’s Energy Efficiency and Clean Energy programs help pay for low-cost energy audits that show homeowners how to make their homes more efficient, offer loans and rebates, and much more. The Connecticut Energy Efficiency Fund (CEEF) combines a variety of resources—including a small customer contribution on electric bills, auction proceeds from the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI, a cap and trade program that rewards electric generators for reducing carbon emissions), and compensation from the regional energy market—to invest in energy savings.
Energy efficiency creates jobs, saves families and businesses money, and protects your health!
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