Location: Knoxville, Tennessee, USA
Population: 868,546 [metropolitan area]
Climate: Humid subtropical
Funding sources: Public
City Networks: –
Savings: Energy consumption reduced by 31% per household, equal to 6,055 MWh annually.
Solutions: Retrofit of old residential buildings with energy efficient solutions.
Multiple benefits: Energy bills reduced , jobs created and increased citizens’ knowledge on energy efficiency.
Knoxville Extreme Energy Makeover (KEEM) is a multi-partner program that is providing energy efficiency retrofits to Knoxville’s oldest buildings. It is a partnership between: Knoxville-Knox County Community Action Committee, City of Knoxville, Knoxville Utilities Board, Tennessee Valley Authority and Alliance to Save Energy [source].
Objective: Knoxville’s charities spend significant amounts of money helping low-income families pay their bills. KEEM aims to address this problem at the source by improving the efficiency of aging buildings and reducing energy bill.
Solutions: Improvements of the insulation, heating and cooling systems and other technologies at no cost (entirely funded by the city) in more than 1200 homes were made. Common upgrades include: installation of weather stripping, upgrades of heating units, air sealing, and insulation of walls, ducts, pipes and attics [source]. In order to determine the savings, audits before and after the improvements were performed. 150 free education workshops for the residents were held on how to improve their energy-saving habits.
Funding: A total budget of USD 15 mln [source]. The project was funded by the Tennessee Valley Authority – government owned electricity utility corporation.
Innovation: Efficiency upgrades at large scale at no cost for low-income families (fully funded by the city). Large scale project – more than 1200 homes upgraded.
Success factors: Many partnerships were key for the success of the project. Besides the main team – the City of Knoxville, Knoxville Utilities Board, and Alliance to Save Energy, many other local partners (20+) made this project a success (Smarters Cities Partnership), by coordinating local resources and seeking for new funding.
- Energy use reduced by 31% per household;
- Energy consumption reduced by 6,055 MWh annually;
- Household energy bills reduced by 500$ annually;
- Indoor thermal comfort enhanced;
- More than 1700 residents educated;
- Around 120 jobs created [source].
Synergies with local policies:
- The City of Knoxville’s Energy & Sustainability Initiative sets a target of 20% CO2 emission reduction by 2020 (2005 baseline). To meet this goal, the City has intensively pursued energy efficiency projects.
- The Tennessee Clean Energy Future Act of 2009 was created in order to increase energy efficiency in the state. Includes building codes, minimum state-wide building construction standards;
- The Energy Policy Act (U.S.) specifies building codes for residential buildings.
- A part of the Knoxville Smarter Cities Partnership – a coalition of over 20 community organizations seeking to improve the quality, comfort and affordability of inner city homes through energy efficiency;
- Local actors – small construction business involved;
The Administration of the City of Knoxville has a vision to replicate the project’s model in other communities. “We believe KEEM is a model that other communities can replicate to empower their residents to take control of their utility bills,” – Gill, sustainability director for the City of Knoxville.Link to resource
Country / Region: Northern America, United StatesTags: cities, citizens, domestic heating, economic cost, energy, energy efficiency, energy utilities, heating, jobs, old, partnerships, projects, residential buildings, retrofits, stakeholders, thermal insulations
In 1 user collection: Good practices of cities
Knowledge Object: User generated Initiative
Published by: C40 Cities