COUNCIL URGES PHILLY SMALL BUSINESSES TO REDUCE COSTS & CARBON FOOTPRINT WITH PHILADELPHIA ENERGY CAMPAIGN

In Al Taubenberger, Bobby Henon, Council News, Darrell L. Clarke, News by PHL Council

Philadelphia, June 28, 2018 Council President Darrell L. Clarke (5th District), Majority Leader Bobby Henon (6th District), and Councilman Al Taubenberger (At-Large) on Thursday joined sustainability advocates and local business owners at Grey Lodge Pub, the first small business to receive a deep energy retrofit through the Philadelphia Energy Campaign.

The Philadelphia Energy Authority (PEA) oversees the 10-year, $1 billion campaign to invest in energy efficiency and clean energy in buildings across the City, collect significant cost savings for property owners and taxpayers, and create 10,000 family-sustaining jobs. The PEA is an independent authority created by City Council to further clean and affordable energy goals.

“Our City of Neighborhoods is home to so many local businesses that are anchors of their communities, which is why we must make sure Philadelphia strives to be a great place to operate as a merchant or restaurateur,” Council President Clarke said. “I’m so proud to be in the Mighty Northeast with the folks at Grey Lodge Pub, which is so beloved by the Mayfair community. By partnering with the Philadelphia Energy Campaign, Grey Lodge Pub will see cost savings from lower utility bills, which can then be reinvested in other parts of the business including worker training and compensation. Thank you for making such an important investment in energy sustainability and in our City!”

Council members and PEA staff were joined at Grey Lodge Pub by owner Mike “Scoats” Scotese, also president of the Mayfair Business Improvement District; the African-American Chamber of Commerce; the Energy Coordinating Agency (ECA); and the City’s Office of Sustainability.

The PEA also released Year 1 results of the Philadelphia Energy Campaign, including metrics on job creation and economic impact on small businesses. The 2017 report shows that approximately 225 jobs were created in the first year of the Energy Campaign, with more than $50 million in active projects through Fiscal Year 2019, more than 160 homes participating in the Solarize residential solar energy program, and more than 50 free energy audits for small businesses.

Through participation in the Energy Campaign, Grey Lodge Pub received a state grant that helped support energy upgrades that now save Scotese roughly $6,000 annually.

“Small business owners already work all hours of the day, and even when we know of grants, we don’t have time to jump through all the hoops to take advantage of them,” Scotese said. “The Small Business Energy Efficiency Program took care of those details. My investment paid off and my electric costs are down 30 percent.”

PEA Executive Director Emily Schapira said: “We’re excited to share the success of our first year running the Energy Campaign. We expected 2017 to be a startup year, and thanks to leadership from the Office of Sustainability, SEPTA, the Philadelphia Housing Authority, and others, we were successful in kick-starting energy job creation in Philly. We’re now projecting more than 600 jobs will be created in 2018, driving us closer toward our 10-year goal.”

The complete Year 1 report is available online at http://www.philaenergy.org/year_one_report/.

Results from Year 1 include:

  • Pilots or projects complete or active in all sectors, on track for 10-year goals
  • Project pipeline of $53.2 million through FY2019
    • $11.5M Art Museum project (24% energy savings)
    • Projected $20M School District project (20% energy savings)
    • $3M complete in residential solar, projected additional $3M in 2018
      • 4x market multiplier, and $3.7M in state solar grants for Philadelphia
      • Philadelphia is now the 5th fastest growing solar market in U.S.
  • 225 jobs created in 2017, projecting >600 for 2018
    • Raised more than $250,000 for solar and energy efficiency job training for School District CTE students
    • Trained 36 students, with another 20-student cohort starting Summer 2018, plus 10 paid internships this summer, supported by PECO, Siemens, U.S. Department of Energy, and the Philadelphia Youth Network
    • Supported new energy training programs for adults at Energy Coordinating Agency and Philadelphia OIC
  • Solarize Philly, a residential group buying program designed to help all Philadelphians go solar at home, installed more than 160 solar projects in Round 1, and is open now for Round 2 signups at www.solarizephilly.org.
    • Low- and Moderate-Income Solar Financing Pilot now open for 45 households, to ensure solar is accessible for everyone
  • Small Business Energy Efficiency Program provided 50 free small business energy audits in Round 1, and is now open for Round 2. Businesses get an audit, a financial assessment from West Philadelphia Financial Services Institution (with support and counseling as needed), and access to special energy financing, utility rebates and state grants to pay for equipment upgrades. Open now for enrollment at www.philaenergysave.com.
  • Multi-Family Affordable Housing Energy Efficiency Program retrofit 200 units of affordable housing in partnership with Mission First Housing Group, Friends Rehabilitation Group, CMC Energy Services, BlocPower, StratisIOT, PECO and PGW. Savings of 15-30% of utility costs.

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