Energy Efficiency Program keeps home temperatures more comfortable

Eligible residents in Lismore, Derrinallum and Skipton will have the opportunity to take part in the second round of the Corangamite Shire’s Energy Efficiency Program (EEP2) next month.

The program, in partnership with Berrybank Windfarm operator Global Power Generation, offers energy upgrades for people who meet eligibility criteria and attend one of three online information sessions, to be held on 16, 17 and 19 November.

EEP2 follows the successful roll-out of the pilot program last year which saw 10 home-owners receive new appliances and efficiency upgrades to help bring down the cost of their bills, and make living in their homes more comfortable.

Upgrades included either draught-proofing, ceiling or underfloor insulation, new appliances, window coverings or external blinds.

The aim of the project was to raise awareness about the importance of energy efficiency and its impact on the environment as well as empowering households to take control of their bills.

The first step of the program involves an assessment of the home’s structure and appliances by Geelong Sustainability. Each home is given a star rating (out of nine), with the aim of improving that star rating as much as possible through small upgrades within the allocated budget.

According to participants Tony and Carole Miggins, from Derrinallum, the assessors “were lovely people, always on time and they really gave the house a once-over. They jumped up on the roof and looked under the floors, it was really quite something”.

Following an assessment; residents were then given a scorecard and a star rating for their home.

“Some homes initially had a star rating of just one, two or four out of nine” said Geelong Sustainability Project Coordinator Dan Cowdell.

“Following upgrades we were able to increase that star rating by an average of 0.6 stars while two homes were able to increase it by two stars which is a phenomenal result.”

Tony and Carol Miggins received underfloor insulation throughout the house as well as draught-stoppers on their front and back doors. “It’s free to do and when someone is offering to make improvements to your house, why wouldn’t you jump at it? I’d absolutely recommend people get involved,” said Carol.

“It should be offered to someone who genuinely needs it, to the elderly or people living on their own,” added Tony.

Pilot participants and Lismore residents Kevin and Audrey Daisley’s home received a new back door and split system, after an assessment found their old heat bank was inefficient. Prior to the upgrade the house didn’t have any air-conditioning.

“We were very grateful to the council for that,” said Kevin. “I would encourage anyone who is eligible to get involved”.

Three online information sessions will be held on 16, 17 and 19 November. To register your interest, click here or call Community Projects Officer Lauren Molan on 03 5593 7164.

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