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April 8, 2010
For immediate release

Federal Energy Audit Not Needed For Provincial Incentives

Environment, Energy & Forestry

Prince Edward Island homeowners will no longer need an energy audit to qualify for grants and loans offered by the Office of Energy Efficiency, said Minister of Environment, Energy and Forestry, Richard Brown.

Last week, the federal government cut the funding for the ecoEnergy Retrofit program that offered energy audits to homeowners looking to reduce their energy consumption.

The average audit costs $500.

“It’s disappointing the federal government doesn’t see the value in continuing this program,” said Minister Brown. “The provincial and federal programs worked well together and were a strong incentive for people to improve the energy efficiency of their homes.”

Homeowners were required to have an energy audit of their homes as the first step in qualifying for the energy efficiency loans and grants, said Minister Brown.

The province is dropping that requirement now that the federal government has cancelled the program.

“We’ve learned from previous audits what measures homeowners can take to make their homes more energy efficient, from increasing insulation to low-cost measures like weather stripping and furnace maintenance,” said Minister Brown. “We will continue to promote energy conservation with incentives to homeowners.”

Minister Brown said during the past 2 years many Islanders took advantage of the loans and grants to make their homes more energy efficient.

“The PEI Office of Energy Efficiency has been very successful helping homeowners make changes to reduce their energy consumption and the PEI Government is committed to continuing with initiatives that encourage people to reduce their energy consumption.”

Minister Brown said more than 4,000 energy audits were conducted on PEI homes. The average homeowners received $2,500 in incentives and were able to reduce their yearly energy bills by $1,200.

Close to 800 loans totaling $5 million dollars and 865 grants amounting to $650,000 have been processed.

All provincial incentive programs will continue with no changes said Brown.

Brown said the PEI Office of Energy Efficiency will be at the Provincial Home Show this weekend with information on all its available programs.

“I encourage Islanders to visit our booth to find out what steps they can take to reduce their energy costs,” said Minister Brown.

A complete list of eligible upgrades is available at www.gov.pe.ca.

BACKGROUNDER

The Office of Energy Efficiency opened January 2008. It was established to provide Islanders with easy access to information, assistance and advice on reducing their energy consumption. It offers the following programs:

PEI Energy Efficiency Grant Program

The PEI Energy Efficiency Grant Program provides a direct subsidy of 15% (max $1,500) to homeowners to implement energy efficiency measures.

PEI Energy Efficiency (Windows and Doors) Grant Program

Clients who install windows and/or doors will receive a grant of $40 per eligible window or door installed.

PEI Energy Efficiency Loan Program

Provides financing (up to $10,000) to complete energy upgrades. Low-income clients are eligible for loan forgiveness for a portion of the loan (50% for less than $15,000 income, 25% for those over $15,000 but less than $35,000).

Commercial Sector and Institutional Buildings Program (CSI-PEI)

Provides financial incentives up to $3,000 for energy assessments and up to $25,000 for energy upgrades.

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Media Contact: Kim Devine
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