The W/E Together initiative improves building efficiency by tackling the challenge of heating and cooling from two different directions: first, improve the building envelope to reduce energy loss, and second, install high-efficiency, right-sized electric appliances to reduce the amount of energy needed for heating and cooling. These appliances can also lower peak demand, reducing stress on the grid. This inside and out approach will lower bills, improve air quality and, scaled up, can promote a robust, resilient and equitable energy system.
$9 billion for home electrification—but can we spend it wisely?
The Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) will pay up to $14,000 upfront for a low- or moderate-income family to efficiently electrify and weatherize their home, with lower but still generous rebates available to all households. But there are formidable obstacles standing in the way of the utilities, nonprofits, local governments, and other entities that want to ensure this opportunity benefits large numbers of low- and moderate-income households.
BEL’s Weatherization/Electrification (W/E) Together initiative was established to tackle these obstacles and to help utilities and their partners better integrate weatherization and electrification programs. To move the needle on this issue and help lay the groundwork for the IRA energy rebates to widely benefit low-income people, BEL is sponsoring W/E demo projects across the country.
Related Articles and Reports
BEL Announces “W/E Together”
The Beneficial Electrification League (BEL) today announced the launch of “Weatherization/Electrification Together,” a national initiative to electrify low- and moderate-income and disadvantaged communities, supported by a grant from the Wells Fargo Foundation.
Small UT/NV Utility Example
With the pandemic threatening to delay its efficiency project beyond the funding deadline, Wells Rural Electric Company got creative to meet the deadline and bundle efficient air-source heat pumps into weatherization retrofits.
W/E Together Initial Findings
Results - This 2-Page report highlights pilot project weatherization and electrification upgrades of challenging houses in two rural communities, one in the Southwest and one in the Southeast.
W/E Together Forum January 10, 2023
Project Partners and Participants
The Beneficial Electrification League is a convenor for this project. Our primary participants are Generation and Transmission cooperatives and distribution cooperatives that collectively represent over 350 distribution cooperatives across more than 32 states.