Yet another reason New Yorkers might be jealous: the city of San Francisco has just announced 19.2 million dollars in new funding for energy efficiency programs. The bulk of the funds will go to EnergyWatch, a program that provides free energy efficiency assessments and low-cost retrofits for businesses and multi-family residences in the city.
The remaining funds, from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, will assess and retrofit municipal buildings, like health centers and cultural centers, and part of why San Fran is so smug about the whole thing is that the new funding is an excellent demonstration of how green business creates jobs. EnergyWatch employs many graduates of a program called JobsNow, which trains unemployed citizens in energy efficiency. Over 1,700 people have been put back to work through the program.
Gradual implementation of energy efficiency programs since 2001 has reduced the city’s energy consumption by 29 megawatts. These recent initiatives may knock it down another 6, making the total energy savings enough to power 30,000 SF homes.