Monday, June 08, 2009

The Politics of Weatherization

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 grants over $11 billion for the Weatherization and Intergovernmental Program, which gives funding and technical assistance to help state and local governments, Indian tribes, and international agencies adopt renewable energy and energy-efficiency technologies. An increasing percentage of these funds is being used to weatherize homes in hot states--keeping in cool, rather than hot, air. The New York Times reports that some are unhappy with this, because reducing electricity for cooling is not as efficient as reducing electricity for heating.

In 1995, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) nearly doubled the amount of weatherization funds it devotes to states with hot climates. This was because it changed its allocation formula to "address the concerns of warm-climate states regarding the equitable distribution of funds." As one person in the Times is quoted as saying, the allocation of funds tries to find a balance between national interests and state interests.

The DOE's website provides other information about U.S. energy programs related to the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009:

Need more resources? See our guides to energy and the economic stimulus.

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