Rochester ENergy Efficiency and Weatherization
Rochester ENergy Efficiency & Weatherization (RENEW) is a collective impact initiative established in 2015.
By braiding resources and working cooperatively, RENEW and our community partners have invested over $4 million into the homes of hundreds of income-qualified homeowners, making them more energy-efficient, safer, and healthier. These improvements in energy efficiency will keep over 4,000 tonnes of carbon (greenhouse gas emissions) from entering the atmosphere. Clients are experiencing a 20% average savings on energy costs (around $500/year) and better physical and mental health outcomes. Follow-up conversations with RENEW clients find that 100% of those with self-reported, pre-existing respiratory conditions — such as asthma and COPD — report significantly reduced symptoms.
Our work has multiple co-benefits including transforming neighborhoods, building wealth, preventing home foreclosure, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and creating improved health outcomes for low- to moderate income families. Investing in home “health” is an essential cornerstone and unmet need to combatting poverty and building community-wide economic stability.
How You Can Support RENEW
Donations to the RENEW Climate Fund will help make Rochester area homes more energy-efficient, healthier, and safer.
How RENEW Works
RENEW’s community partners/service providers offer a variety of home energy-efficiency grant programs for income-eligible homeowners. The majority of RENEW grants are projects in need of “gap” funding to meet program eligibility requirements. While many programs provide safety nets, RENEW serves as a bridge. We remove obstacles to assist families so they can receive desperately needed weatherization and health and safety work — families that would otherwise be ineligible.
Grants to community partners working with income-qualified homeowners help them make improvements that include insulation, furnaces, hot water heaters, or emergency health and safety repairs including sewer lines and electrical panels. We are proud of our efforts to increase the number of installations of high-efficiency clean heating and cooling technologies like heat pump hot water heaters and furnaces.
RENEW collaborates with multiple community partners to accomplish this collective impact work. Partners include Action for a Better Community, City of Rochester, Climate Solutions Accelerator, Coalition to Prevent Lead Poisoning, Common Ground Health, Ibero-American Development Corp., Monroe County Department of Public Health, Monroe County Office on Aging, Neighborworks Community Partners, PathStone Corp., Rochester Institute of Technology, Town of Greece, Town of Irondequoit, and University of Rochester.
We have a proven public/private operations model and funding mechanism to combine federal, state, and local resources to facilitate comprehensive energy efficiency and weatherization improvements to reduce the energy burden on income-eligible homeowners and the environment, and increase residential safety and comfort.
Started with settlement funds from the NYS Attorney General, RENEW’s work is possible through the generosity of grants from ESL Charitable Foundation and Rochester Area Community Foundation together with individual donations.
Am I Eligible?
Homeowners can see if they qualify by scheduling a free energy audit with one of RENEW’s community partners. Contact one of the following agencies to learn more about saving money on utility costs.
- Action for a Better Community Energy Conservation Program (585.442.4160);
- NeighborWorks Community Partners Rochester Home Energy Services (585.325.4170); or
- PathStone Corporation Home Rehabilitation and Energy Services (585.546.3700, ext. 3025).
How You Can Help
Carbon offset donations allow individuals, businesses, institutions, and municipalities to reduce carbon footprints associated with everyday activities. Any online carbon footprint calculator will help you calculate your footprint and tell you the amount to donate to “offset” your carbon emissions. Your tax-deductible donation to the RENEW Climate Fund will directly benefit income-qualified homeowners in our region and reduce carbon emissions in our community. Your donation will stay local and clean the air we ALL breathe.
For more information, contact RENEW Program Director Elizabeth McDade. Email Elizabeth or call her at 585.341.4362.