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Ohio Weatherization Programs Tied to Legacy of Earth Day

April 22, 2009

Columbus, OH – While many Ohioans observe Earth Day today by planting a tree or picking up trash, others continue their work to reduce energy use and utility bills in their state. With help from federal stimulus funds, plans are in place to winterize 26,000 homes in Ohio over the next three years; that would reduce CO2 emissions by up to 1.1 billion tons.

The executive director of Ohio Partners for Affordable Energy, Dave Rhinebolt, says this type of work is what Earth Day is really all about.

"The desire to protect the planet helped create the weatherization systems program over 30 years ago. It produces real environmental benefits every day, while reducing energy costs to households."

Rhinebolt says energy use in buildings accounts for 43 percent of all the energy used in the world. He adds that with proper energy-efficiency measures, the average household can see a 22 percent reduction in emissions.

Rhinebolt says weatherization programs are a good green stimulus as they employ Ohio workers, lower utility costs for homeowners, and significantly reduce greenhouse gases.

"People need to realize that protecting the planet and celebrating Earth Day can also mean doing things that will save them money and will create jobs."

Over the next two years, it's expected that more than 2,000 people will be hired for weatherization projects in Ohio.

Mary Kuhlman, Public News Service - OH