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State and Local Climate and Energy Program

Frederick County Green Homes Challenge

Frederick County, Maryland

Federal Funding: $500,000
Project Timeline: February 2011 – February 2014

Latest Update

Frederick County continues to implement its Green Homes Challenge (GHC). The County is publishing newspaper articles, giving presentations, participating in community events, and hosting Powerware Parties to educate residents on energy efficiency. Two new Green Ambassadors joined the County in promoting and supporting GHC initiatives throughout the community. The County is continuing to provide support and one-on-one coaching to all Challenge Takers to complete the challenges and become Certified Power Savers. Follow-up activities include checking the status of Challenge Takers and further engaging them. Additionally, Frederick County published the Green Leader Handbook and handouts on several topics. Chapters and actions for the Renewable Star Handbook were completed and are currently under management review. Webpages were developed for the Renewable Star Challenge and Solarize Frederick County, and the Challenge and its accompanying handbook were launched in the end of March 2013 at the Green Homes Challenge Recognition Event. The County secured a grant from the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development, which has funded an online version of the Green Homes Challenge, known as the Frederick Green Challenge. The website is intended to generate interest in the program and sustain it beyond the EPA Climate Showcase Communities funding. Upcoming activities include continuing to promote the Green Leader Challenge through various media outlets and continuing GHC registrant tracking and follow-up efforts.

Photos

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Frederick County Government Powerware Party on April 13, 2011, with 13 attendees.

Frederick County Government

Frederick County Government Powerware Party on April 13, 2011, with 13 attendees.

Yarmus Family Powerware Party in Middleton, MD on May 4, 2011, with 10 attendees.

Yarmus Family

Yarmus Family Powerware Party in Middleton, MD on May 4, 2011, with 10 attendees.

State Farm Insurance Powerware Party on May 6, 2011, with 10 attendees.

State Farm

State Farm Insurance Powerware Party on May 6, 2011, with 10 attendees.

Frederick County Government Powerware Party on 6/23/11, with two home performance professionals as participants, one of which signed up to become a Green Ambassador.

Frederick County Government

Frederick County Government Powerware Party on 6/23/11, with two home performance professionals as participants, one of which signed up to become a Green Ambassador.

GHC staff and interns hosted an outreach booth at the Go Green Energy Conference on 7/9/2012.

Go Green Energy Conference

GHC staff and interns hosted an outreach booth at the Go Green Energy Conference on 7/9/2012.

Frederick County Government Powerware Party on 7/17/12, with 8 attendees.

Powerware Party

Frederick County Government Powerware Party on 7/17/12, with 8 attendees.

GHC staff hosted an outreach booth during a Habitat for Humanity BBQ on 7/26/12.

Habitat for Humanity BBQ

GHC staff hosted an outreach booth during a Habitat for Humanity BBQ on 7/26/12.

Common Market Powerware Party on 9/29/12, with 9 attendees.

Powerware Party

Common Market Powerware Party on 9/29/12, with 9 attendees.

Common Market Powerware Party on 9/29/12, with 9 attendees.

Powerware Party

Common Market Powerware Party on 9/29/12, with 9 attendees.

Frederick County Government Powerware Party on 4/13/11, with 13 attendees.

Powerware Party

Frederick County Government Powerware Party on 4/13/11, with 13 attendees.

Yarmus Family Powerware Party in Middleton, MD on 5/4/11, with 10 attendees.

Powerware Party

Yarmus Family Powerware Party in Middleton, MD on 5/4/11, with 10 attendees.

State Farm Insurance Powerware Party on 5/6/11, with 10 attendees.

Powerware Party

State Farm Insurance Powerware Party on 5/6/11, with 10 attendees.

Frederick County Government Powerware Party on 6/23/11, with two home performance professionals as participants, one of which signed up to become a Green Ambassador.

Powerware Party

Frederick County Government Powerware Party on 6/23/11, with two home performance professionals as participants, one of which signed up to become a Green Ambassador.

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Project Summary

A Replicable, Multi-Level Green Home Certification Project

The Frederick County Green Homes Challenge is reducing greenhouse gas emissions, energy use, and energy costs for households in Frederick County through home retrofit projects and installation of energy-efficient devices and renewable energy systems. The Challenge is supported by partnerships with Allegheny Power, the Reaching Independence and Stability through Employment (RISE) workforce development program, the cities of Frederick, Middletown, and Brunswick, and local businesses.

Frederick County is organizing the Green Homes Challenge and is certifying households at three levels. The first level of certification is the Power Saver certification level, which focuses on community education and engagement, home energy audits, and energy-saving actions and retrofits. Powerware Parties are the primary outreach method. At these small social gatherings, program coordinators or volunteers distribute energy efficiency products, demonstrate technologies, teach people about the Green Homes Certification program, and ask community members to pledge to reduce energy use or register with the Challenge. Regardless of whether participants sign up for the Challenge, they have access to volunteer-conducted home energy audits and audit tools, the Earth Aid energy use and reduction tracking tool, the proposed Frederick County Clean Energy Loan Program (CELP), and personalized follow-up and assistance. Residents also earn points for their actions towards a Power Saver certification.

Frederick County residents may also earn a Green Living Leader certification. Under this program, residents earn a certain number of points for sustainable transportation choices, waste management habits, food choices, cleaning materials, outdoor and yard activities, and home office behaviors. Finally, residents may also achieve the Sustainable Star certification level. To reach this level, residents must install renewable energy systems and may take advantage of local, state, and federal incentives as well as mini grants available through the Green Homes Challenge.

Through the Green Homes Challenge, Frederick County hopes to certify 800 Power Saver homes, 600 Green Living Leaders, and 90 Sustainable Stars. The program will keep track of results to share its experiences with other local leaders and will use nationally available tools and resources to ensure that the projects are replicable.

Community Characteristics

Population 224,185
Area 662.88 square miles
Government Type County
Community Type Suburban
Median Household Income $80,970

Program Results

  Reported Results (as of June 2013) Projected Cumulative Results
Annual GHG Reductions 2,301 mt CO2e 2,268 mt CO2e

Project Websites

Media Coverage

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