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The Energy Efficiency Market in the Greater Cincinnati Region: Energy Savings Potential and Strategies to Improve Performance of Residential and Nonprofit Buildings


December 2, 2011

Research Report E116

Authors:

Eric Mackres, Max Neubauer, John A. “Skip” Laitner, Amanda Lowenberger, Jacob Talbot, and Casey J. Bell, ACEEE; Jeffry Rexhausen, Irem Yelkenci, and Jameshia Peterson, University of Cincinnati Economics Center

Description:

This report analyzes the opportunity presented to the Cincinnati region by the Greater Cincinnati Energy Alliance, a local nonprofit organization committed to improving energy efficiency in existing buildings, through its grant work under the Department of Energy Better Buildings Neighborhood Program. The mission of the Energy Alliance is “to facilitate investment in energy efficiency for homeowners, nonprofit organizations, and commercial building owners through outreach and education, project management, and financing solutions.” Energy efficiency is important for the regional economy as a whole, but the immediate focus of the Energy Alliance, and this report, is on single-family residential and nonprofit buildings. The four counties currently served by the Energy Alliance are Hamilton in Ohio plus Boone, Kenton, and Campbell in Kentucky. As a result we restrict our analysis in this report to these four counties.

Our analysis of the greater Cincinnati market and the Energy Alliance programs shows considerable potential consumer energy cost savings, including positive cash flow from energy cost savings that consistently exceed loan payments, for both residential and nonprofit participants. Investment in energy efficiency would make Hamilton, Boone, Kenton, and Campbell counties more competitive, create jobs, reduce pollution, and help homeowners and nonprofits make cross-cutting building improvements.