A small change could make a big difference.
More than a hundred Memphis homeowners are making small changes to weatherize their homes in hopes of making a big difference in their utility bills. Thanks to a Weatherization Workshop hosted by NAACP (Memphis Chapter), TVA and local power company Memphis Light, Gas and Water (MLGW), ratepayers have the tools and information they need to save money and become more prosperous in the New Year.
Frank Rapley, senior manager of EnergyRight Solutions for the Home, attended the event and served as a panelist alongside Chad Bowman from the City of Memphis; Rico Watson and Christy Dumas from Home Depot.
MLGW Vice President of Community and External Affairs Gale Jones Carson served as moderator for the event. “Home weatherization is extremely important,” she began. “A lot of people think their utility bills will be high no matter what, but if your home is weatherized, it will have a direct impact on your utility consumption, which will reduce your energy bill. You do have control of your monthly costs. This is the first step to getting there is learning how to take care of your home and learning how to put more money into your pocket.”
Carson applauded TVA for supporting MLGW’s Share the Pennies Program with a $1 million contribution and for offering each workshop attendee an energy efficiency starter kit valued at $100 apiece.
“We are here to support our great partners in the community and to help ramp up efforts to build infrastructure to do more weatherization work in Memphis,” Rapley commented. “We work closely with MLGW and the City of Memphis to assist with weatherizing more homes.”
Panelists and other energy efficiency experts offered simple and affordable tips, like air sealing, insulating attics, switching to LED lightbulbs and setting the thermostat to 68 degrees in the winter and 78 in the summer, along with ideas for eliminating potential risks.
“Weatherization is not just about making your homes more comfortable,” Bowman added. “It is also about your health and safety,” he said, advising homeowners to avoid using ovens to heat their homes which can lead to house fires and carbon monoxide poisoning.
NAACP State President Gloria Sweet-Love said she was excited to help empower Memphians with information they needed to control their energy expenses. “We think it is so important to have this conversation and public forum in Memphis. We wanted everyone to ask questions and get answers. That’s why we were here.”