ASHEVILLE – Clean Energy For Us, a local program that makes the adoption of solar power and energy efficiency upgrades cheaper and easier, will present a free educational workshop on March 26 from 6 – 7:30 p.m. at the Mill Room, 66 Ashland Avenue. The event will give the public an opportunity to learn more about the program.
“Last fall we launched Solarize Asheville, a pilot program that resulted in 51 area homeowners adopting solar power,” said Katie Bray, program director. “But not everyone can afford solar power, so we added energy efficiency to the mix and opened the program up to everyone in Buncombe County.”
The Western North Carolina Alliance and the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy serve as the campaign’s non-profit partners and the local Self-Help Credit Union will provide financing for those who need it.
Clean Energy For Us – Buncombe features a free energy audit for homeowners, businesses, non-profits, schools, and worship centers in the county for those signing up before the March 31 deadline. If people then decide to adopt solar or make energy efficiency upgrades after the energy audit, they can contract with one of the program’s chosen local, independent contractors at a discounted price.
“It makes sense for people to take action now rather than later,” said Bray. “We don’t know how long the state’s solar tax incentives will last, and Duke Energy’s CEO recently announced that she expects customers to foot the bill for the company’s coal ash pollution cleanup. So, yeah, it’s an excellent time for people to decrease their reliance on dirty energy.”
The March 26 educational workshop at the Mill Room will feature the following speakers and topics:
• Katie Bray, program director (“Welcome and Program Description”);
• Jennifer Rennicks, director of policy and communication, Southern Alliance for Clean Energy (“Fossil Fuel Energy and Climate”);
• Marcus Renner, owner, Conservation Pros (“Efficiency 101”);
• Phelps Clarke of Sugar Hollow Solar, Nate Pembleton of Asheville Solar Company and Alan Watts of Renewable Design Associates (“The Solar Process”);
• Jane Hatley, WNC regional director, Self Help Credit Union (“Clean Energy is Affordable”);
• Question & Answer period.