December 01, 2009

Wyden, Merkley Announce $3.6 Million in Energy Star Appliance Rebates

Will Fund Rebates for Energy-Efficient Heating Systems for Low-Income Households

Washington, D.C. – Continuing to improve Oregon’s economic recovery while helping low-income households afford energy-efficient heating systems, U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D- Ore.) and Jeff Merkley (D- Ore.) announced that Oregon’s Department of Energy will receive more than $3.6 million in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funding to provide low-income households with a 70 percent instant rebate for energy-efficient heating systems.
“This funding will make energy efficient, Energy Star-rated heating systems affordable for low-income households,” Wyden said. “It will give them an opportunity to enjoy the real savings that come with highly efficient furnaces and heat pumps, allow Oregon to save energy, and create jobs manufacturing and installing this heating equipment.”
“New Energy Star-rated heating systems can lower monthly heating bills, but many Oregon families that most need that relief don’t have the money to buy the appliances,” said Merkley.  “By providing families in need with the opportunity to purchase energy saving systems for their homes, we’re putting money back in their pockets and creating jobs in the process.”
The Oregon Department of Energy (ODOE) will release the funding following a plan submitted and approved by the U.S. Department of Energy. This funding will provide rebates to low-income households that will cover up to 70 percent of the cost of energy efficient heating systems. According to the ODOE, the department will partner with the Oregon Department of Housing and Community Services to provide an additional 30 percent rebate.
The rebates will cover improvements to the heating systems in homes of those earning less than 60 percent of the state’s median income. The program is expected to replace roughly 1,800 non-functioning or low-efficiency furnaces or heat pumps throughout the state.