What is ener-G-save?
ener-G-Save is a philanthropically funded education project in the Pioneer Valley and the Berkshires. It is the brainchild of Harold Grinspoon, a well-known local philanthropist, who cares deeply about the powerful positive effect that conserving energy can have in our transition to a clean energy future.
Ener-G-save works with towns, grassroots organizations, other non-profits and schools to lower carbon pollution and help Pioneer Valley and Berkshire residents make energy-smart choices. In our community outreach program, we help people take full advantage of existing energy efficiency incentives to live more comfortably and affordably.
Our Cooler Communities school grants, piloted in 2019, leverage students’ curriculum work on energy and climate to take a whole community on a path to lower emissions and clean energy. In partnership with the Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts, we offer grants of up to $5000 to school districts for participating in, hosting, and attracting visitors to a community event that can lead to measurable reductions in energy use and carbon emissions. This project aims to strengthen young people’s leadership in the area of energy and climate change.
In March 2017, ener-G-save hired thermal imaging company Essess. Their vehicle, equipped with sophisticated imaging hard- and software drove through Pioneer Valley neighborhoods for 6 weeks, recording how much energy – or heat – was escaping from about 100,000 single family homes.
This dataset was then analyzed and tiered to determine which homes can stand to benefit the most from having their walls, attics, and foundations insulated and from sealing leaky windows and doors. Working in conjunction with 10 Valley towns, ener-G-save prepared and delivered thermal images and reports for 25,000 homeowners, showing them where their homes are leaking. These were sent out in September 2017. Through a one-stop hotline, we then helped homeowners to easily access more detailed information, cost-free in-home assessments and financial assistance to get energy efficiency retrofits done.
This project resulted in ener-G-save working with well over 1000 home-owners throughout Pioneer Valley. Following this program, we began to increasingly rely on trusted relationships in towns, non-profits and grassroots, like faith-based groups, to further the uptake of energy efficiency programs.