Join NCBA CLUSA on Thursday, April 8 from 2-3 pm EDT for a virtual Congressional briefing on the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USAD)’s Rural Energy Savings Program. “Expanding Clean Energy and Electrification Opportunities in Rural America” will highlight some of the program’s successes and consider new opportunities on the horizon.
As Congress begins to consider legislation to invest in infrastructure and mitigate the impacts of climate change, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)’s Rural Energy Savings Program (RESP) provides a successful model that leverages the community power of cooperatives to invest in change. RESP provides zero interest 20-year loans to electric cooperatives or other eligible entities to make energy efficiency upgrades to individual households at no or very limited up-front cost to the resident. The investment is paid back to the cooperative as part of the resident’s monthly bill, which the electric co-op pays back to USDA over the life of the loan.
The investments—which average $5,000-$7,500 per household—can save residents hundreds of dollars per month on their utility bill by reducing and more efficiently using energy. RESP capital can also be used for advancing solar development, and there are efforts underway to help ensure these resources reach low- and moderate-income communities. The program is also an engine for economic growth by directly employing or contracting good-paying jobs in energy efficiency. This discussion will highlight some of the successes of the Rural Energy Savings Program and further opportunity as Congress considers infrastructure legislation.
The Rural Energy Savings Program provides a successful model that leverages the community power of cooperatives to invest in change.
Moderated by NCBA CLUSA President and CEO Doug O’Brien, this briefing will feature the following speakers:
- John-Michael Cross, On-Bill Financing Project Manager, Environmental and Energy Study Institute
- Adaora Ifebigh, Engagements Senior Manager for Research and Development, National Rural Electric Cooperative Association
- Bob Coates, Branch Chief of Electric Programs, U.S. Department of Agriculture