Governor Rell: $4.5 Million in Stimulus Funds to Boost Use of Geothermal Heating/Cooling SystemsJan 5th, 2010 | By Environmental Headlines -- CT environmental news | Category: Energy, Geothermal
Homeowners, Businesses, Nonprofits Eligible for Grants
Gov. M. Jodi Rell today announced the state is dedicating $4.5 million in federal stimulus funds to help homeowners, businesses and nonprofit groups pay for the installation of geothermal heat pump systems, an investment that will lower fuel and electricity bills and promote use of alternative energy. The cost-effective technology harnesses the Earth’s natural thermal energy for heating and cooling.
“This is a wonderful opportunity and incentive for hundreds of ratepayers to boost the use of efficient, natural energy,” Governor Rell said. “Connecticut is a national leader in embracing and promoting greener, cleaner energy. That allows us to create opportunities for new industry, new jobs and a healthier environment.”
The new Geothermal Heat Pump Incentive Program is part of the comprehensive State Energy Plan that has qualified for $38 million from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA).
The broad-based plan includes programs that:
• Provide incentives to use alternative energy in homes and businesses;
• Expand fuel cell initiatives;
• Make state buildings more energy efficient;
• Create green collar jobs needed for emerging technologies.
The incentive program will be administered by the Connecticut Clean Energy Fund (CCEF), a ratepayer fund that promotes, develops and invests in clean energy resources for the benefit of Connecticut’s electric ratepayers.
CCEF officials say there is enough funding available to support the installation of about 300 geothermal heat pump systems per year until April 2012, when the federal program ends. The systems can supply up to 100 percent of a customer’s peak heating and cooling load.
“The Geothermal Heat Pump Incentive Program will help to focus the public’s attention on this well-proven technology for reducing the energy needed to heat and cool our homes and buildings,” said CCEF President Lise Dondy. “In particular, the program will encourage Connecticut’s HVAC workforce to expand its skills in the geothermal arena and will stimulate residential and commercial geothermal installations by improving the return on investment.”
Earlier this year, the governor announced the launch of another alternative energy incentive initiative, the Solar Thermal Incentive Program, also administered by CCEF.
To view the entire State Energy Plan and for more information on the ARRA in Connecticut, visit the state’s stimulus Web site at www.ct.gov and click on the CT Recovery link.