Chicago Program a Model for Preserving Affordable Housing and Cutting Pollution

A Chicago-based community development financial institution (CDFI) and efficiency group help apartment building owners tame high utility costs, preserve affordable housing, and cut global warming emissions.

"About 40 percent of Cook County’s residential stock is multiunit property. A significant part of that is renter occupied," writes Susie An. "It’s that population that CNT Energy and Community Investment Corporation is targeting with the Energy Savers program."

“Multifamily building owners have been harder to reach by efficiency programs. And that’s because they’re kind of stuck between a residential program and a commercial program. And typically the programs that are out there don’t meet their needs,” said Anne Evens, CNT Energy's CEO.

"The program gives owners a free evaluation of their property, listing how much savings they’d get with recommended upgrades. It also offers various rebates and financial options."

"Daniel Olson is the senior energy efficiency planner with the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning. The agency’s mapped out a regional plan that identifies energy efficiency as one of the easier measures that can move the area toward sustainability. That includes things like upgrading to a high efficiency hot water heater, insulating buildings and simply changing light bulbs to compact fluorescent lights."

Full Story: Getting Landlords to Make Energy Efficiency Improvements

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