DOE funds Toledo project to expand clean energy industry


TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) – The US Department of Energy has awarded millions in funding in an effort to help residents weatherize their homes and increase energy efficiency.

The DOE awarded more than $1.9 million to the Neighborhood Housing Services of Toledo to create the Toledo Healthy Homes Training Center. It’s a regional hub that would train Weatherization Assistance Program providers and contractors.

It’s part of a larger effort to expand the clean energy industry in northern Ohio.

“The specific innovation is the collocated areas of study concentrated in one facility: weatherization methodologies coupled with lead hazard mitigation, WAP and other healthy homes topics,” a summary from the DOE said of the initiative.

The US Secretary of Energy, Jennifer Granholm, said the new funding for the Weatherization Assistance Program will help Americans keep money in their pockets and develop the clean energy workforce.

“Weatherization is a great way to save hundreds of dollars on energy bills, but unfortunately aging electrical systems and structural complications keep homes in disrepair locked out of this money saving benefit,” Granholm said in a statement.

Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur (D-Toledo) said the investment will prepare the local workforce for good-paying jobs in an in-demand field.

“Bolstering home weatherization services in neighborhoods throughout Northwest Ohio will create more livable, energy efficient homes, and lower utility costs for families and seniors,” Kaptur told 13abc in a statement.

The Toledo Healthy Homes Training Center is in the early stages of development but a location has not been determined yet. They hope to break ground in year two of the grant process. The initial funding is projected to be enough to get the facility up and running.

The DOE said this project is one of many funded through the Biden administration’s new infrastructure law that can create good paying jobs, support workforce development and retention, and help service providers leverage innovative technologies in energy retrofits.

The funding is intended to focus on weatherizing homes in historically disadvantaged communities.

The federal Weatherization Assistance Program has been working with Neighborhood Housing Services of Toledo for nearly 40 years.

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