Obama Unveils Home Energy Rebate Program

SAVANNAH, Ga., March 2 (UPI) — U.S. President Barack Obama Tuesday unveiled a new program that would offer rebates to U.S. consumers who invest to make their homes energy efficient.

The Home Star energy rebate program will save families several hundred dollars in utility bills, reduce the country’s fossil-fuel dependency and “spur hiring up and down the economy,” Obama said during a White House to Main Street visit to Savannah, Ga.

If consumers want to upgrade the energy efficiency through insulation, duct sealing, windows, roofing or doors, among other things, they could be eligible for rebates of between $1,000 and $1,500 to a combined maximum of $3,000.

Consumers looking for more comprehensive energy retrofitting could receive up to a $3,000 rebate for a whole-house energy audit and retrofits that achieve a 20 percent energy savings.

The program requires congressional approval, Obama said, who added, “Working stuff through Congress is more than a notion.”

“This is not a Democratic or a Republican idea, this is a common-sense approach” to help jump start the economy and make it stronger,” Obama said.

Programs such as Home Star and other energy-focused initiatives will help lay the foundation of economic growth that will boost jobs at decent wages critical to “create lasting opportunities and prosperity.”

He noted the first new nuclear power plant in nearly three decades will be built in Georgia, and praised programs at Savannah Technical College, where he spoke, that teach green trades.

“I’m convinced the country that leads in clean energy will lead the global economy,” Obama said. “I want us to be at first.”

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