CLEVELAND, OHIO – U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) visited a Cleveland home on Friday to announce the launch of a new clean energy job training program. At a Cleveland home currently undergoing weatherization renovations that will improve its energy efficiency, Brown joined the National Community Action Foundation (NCAF) and ExxonMobil to announce funds that will be awarded to the Ohio Green Workforce Training Partnership through an inaugural grant from the NCAF ExxonMobil Weatherization Training Partnership.
“The weatherization program employs Ohio workers, using Ohio products, to lower energy costs for Ohio homeowners,” said Brown. “This program is not just about reducing energy use—it’s about job creation and economic development in Northeast Ohio.”
The Ohio Green Workforce Training Partnership is being led by the Corporation for Ohio Appalachian Development. The partnership will bring together community and technical colleges, environmental and labor groups, and Ohio’s existing weatherization network to prepare workers participating in the Ohio Home Weatherization Assistance Program. The partnership will give participants training for career opportunities, and will connect them with partnership participants including the Ohio State Building and Construction Trades, Ohio Association of Community Action Agencies, Ohio Partners for Affordable Energy, Policy Matters Ohio, Ohio Apollo Alliance, BlueGreen Alliance, Ohio Urban Resources System (OURS), Hocking College Logan Campus, and the Laborers’ International Union of North America (LIUNA).
Brown is a longtime champion of the weatherization assistance program, which helps homeowners save on energy costs through insulation improvements and energy efficiency improvements. Brown fought to increase funding for this program through the economic recovery legislation, under which Ohio is receiving more than $266 million in funds.
Since the inception of the Weatherization Assistance Program in 1976, more than 6.2 million homes have been weatherized. President Obama has a set a nationwide goal of weatherizing one million new homes each year. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 provides $5 billion for the weatherization program nationwide. Ohio’s allocation of more than $266 million for weatherization projects represents a massive increase over the $15 million the state received each year under the previous administration.
On average, weatherization reduces heating bills by 32 percent and overall energy bills by about $350 per year. Weatherization measures also reduce national energy demand by the equivalent of 18 million barrels of oil per year. ODOD estimates that the weatherization funds in the economic recovery package will improve the energy efficiency of more than 26,000 homes across the state.
To view a Photo Gallery from the event, Click Here.