WESTBOROUGH, MA -- Conservation Services Group (CSG) and the Massachusetts Oilheat Council (MOC) today announced a $1.7 million contract from the Mass. Department of Energy Resources (DOER). The program is made possible by federal stimulus (American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009) funds to support energy efficiency programs in the state. Called the Oil Heat Efficiency Program (OHEP), the pilot is the first of its kind, comprehensive residential energy efficiency program in the country for homeowners with low to moderate incomes.
The OHEP is financed by stimulus funds to provide rebates for the installation of new, high efficiency oil-fired heating equipment for about 500 homes in Massachusetts that use heating oil for space heating. The new program enables moderate to low income working families to upgrade their heating systems by providing incentives to help defray their out of pocket costs. CSG is working with the MOC to train dozens of oil heating service technicians in energy efficiency and the "house-as-system" approach. CSG and MOC are working closely with the Massachusetts Low Income Energy Affordability Network (LEAN) to qualify candidates for eligibility.
MOC President, Michael Ferrante, said, "Many of the state's homeowners with older, inefficient heating equipment are paying only the most essential bills in this tough economic climate, so upgrading their heating system may not be a priority. Fortunately, this innovative and timely program will enable hundreds of residents to reap the benefits of higher efficiency equipment. They'll see their energy bills go down, because they'll use less fuel without compromising comfort. This program is also a boost for the local economy because it provides work for oil heat retailers and their technicians, due to increased demand for equipment installations. We will also need to train qualified candidates to become energy auditors, leading to even more jobs."
The OHEP will provide rebates of up to $4,000 on high efficiency, oil-fired, forced hot water boilers, warm air furnaces and water heaters. Consumers should contact their oil dealer or MOC (800/722-0623) with any questions about the OHEP and to determine their eligibility.