Obama's Homestar Plan Would Pay for Home Energy Efficiency Retrofits
SAVANNAH, Georgia, March 2, 2010 (ENS) - President Barack Obama today outlined the details of a new "Homestar" program that would help create jobs by encouraging American families to invest in energy saving home improvements. The President spoke of the new program while touring a training facility at Savannah Technical College.

The Obama administration expects the Homestar program to create tens of thousands of jobs while saving the equivalent of the entire output of three coal-fired power plants each year.

Consumers in the program are estimated to save between $200 - $500 per year in energy costs, while improving the comfort and value of their homes.

The program is an initiative the President mentioned in his State of the Union address when he called on Congress to pass a program of incentives for homeowners who make energy efficiency investments in their homes. Again today called on Congress to pass legislation enabling the program.

The Senate Democratic leadership included a similar proposal as part of their Jobs Agenda released on February 4, 2010.

Key elements of the program include:

The Air Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute today supported President Obama's call for Congress to enact legislation to encourage consumers to purchase and install highly energy efficient HVAC and water heating equipment.

With unemployment in the construction sector near 25 percent and with underutilized capacity in our manufacturing sector, the Homestar program has the potential to boost demand for energy efficiency products and installation services.

The program is intended to help reduce America's dependence on oil and support the development of an energy efficiency services sector in the economy.

California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, a Republican, supports the initiative. "I am excited about the HOMESTAR program that the President detailed today," he said. "Offering incentives to Americans who make their homes more energy efficient will help create jobs and save homeowners money while also helping to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. This is a promising idea, and Democrats and Republicans should work together to enact it into law."

Copyright Environment News Service (ENS) 2010. All rights reserved.