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Consortium Looks To 'Energize Peekskill'

PEEKSKILL, N.Y. — City homeowners looking to save money on their energy costs have a new program to help them do so.

Director Tom Bregman of Energize Peekskill presented his program's services to city officials earlier this week at the Peekskill Committee of the Whole meeting.

Energize Peekskill is part of Energize New York, a community-based energy efficiency program funded through Department of Energy and state's Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA).

The program and its staff operate within the Energy Improvement Corporation, a not-for-profit group and was created through the Northern Westchester Energy Action Consortium (NWEAC) in January 2011. Peekskill is among the founding members of the consortium.

Like Energize Bedford and other groups founded in consortium towns, Energize Peekskill will be helmed by city leaders with help from the Energize New York staff, Bregman said.

"We work with local organizations so that the face of it is the community and not us," Bregman said. "We work more behind the scenes to support it. We develop the infrastructure, but we think its important to have a community face."

Most energy is used in the residential communities, which is why Energize chooses to concentrate on those areas, Bregman explained.

Energy efficiency is not wind and solar power, but things like improving insulation, air sealing and heating and air conditioning, he said.

"In three simple steps, we're about reducing waste in the home, making homes warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer, and teaching people about the programs that are available in the state," Bregman said.

Services that the group offers include leaky door tests, in which infrared cameras are used to measure how much hot air is escaping through doors and windows.

"This is not do-it-yourself. These are contractors that are licensed by the state," Bregman said.

The group helps homeowners pick a contractor, and the home review services performed are paid for by grants, not the homeowners. Townhouse and condominium owners may also be eligible for some services, Bregnman added.

For more information about Energize Peekskill and the services it offers, go to the organization's website.

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