St. Louis, MO – December 15, 2009 – The Missouri Association of Accredited Energy Professionals (MAAEP), a newly formed trade group, held its inaugural organizational meeting for membership and affiliates last Thursday.
Local energy professionals representing private enterprise, non-profits and government participated including Mo. Dept. of Natural Resources, Botanical Garden’s Earthways Center, Mosby Building Arts and other industry leaders.
“The business of making Missouri more energy efficient and saving folks on energy costs is set to grow tremendously in the near future as game-changing Federal and State initiatives come online,” explained Marc Bluestone of Home Green Home, a local energy efficiency contractor and consultant. “Pilots such as the Property Assessed Clean Energy program (PACE) and economic stimulus efforts will soon make energy audits and retrofits on homes as commonplace as the safety and emissions test for your car.”
In October, the Department of Energy announced $2.7 billion under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act for energy efficiency efforts nationwide, with tens of millions earmarked locally in programs such as the Mo. Department of Natural Resources’ “Energize Missouri Communities” which include block grants to fund efficiency and weatherization projects in public buildings, private business and residential structures.
“The Missouri Association of Accredited Energy Professionals (MAAEP) is advancing a program to distinguish high-efficiency, high-performance homes for home buyers and their Realtors,” said attorney Tom Appelbaum. “Studies show these homes retain their value and sell faster than the non-efficient, non-retrofitted homes, and with programs like PACE the cost of these green upgrades can be amortized over the life of a home, making the cost-benefit savings positive from day one.”
MAAEP is working with green consultant James Trout and MyGreenToolkit.com to raise awareness of energy efficiency benefits to REALTORS and their customers, “With MAAEP and MyGreenToolkit.com we empower Realtors and home owners with information and statistics clearly showing the value in improving their homes and making them more energy efficient.”
At Thursday’s meeting, Damien Flaherty of EnergyAudits.com emphasized the role that MAAEP fills in helping industry professionals contend with the quickly changing landscape of energy efficiency. Flaherty maintains a national database of certified Energy Auditors, Energy Raters and Home Performance Contractors and has conducted several surveys to identify issues particular to the efficiency business, “Our professionals are setting standards for best practices and MAAEP will politically advocate on behalf of this emerging industry to promote home value, economic recovery and consumer interests.”
MAAEP board member Harvey Ferdman spoke about a convergence of issues making clean energy and energy conservation an idea whose time has come. “Buildings account for nearly 40% of our nation’s carbon emissions, but their energy efficiency can be improved by 30% or more. These savings will have a very real impact on reducing our carbon footprint and lessening pollution. Every single home improved puts our community on a more sustainable tract.”
“Every building constructed by the end of 2009, conservatively, will make up 85% of all buildings in 2030; consequently, remediating existing homes and offices is where most of the efficiency benefits will be gained,” explained board member Byron DeLear. “Because construction styles vary so greatly, the energy efficiency analysis, consultation and upgrade must be uniquely tailored for each property. This process is directed and carried out by accredited energy auditors and home performance contractors; a new “green job” workforce that can’t be outsourced.”
In addition to St. Louis, MAAEP will be conducting a series of organizational meetings throughout the State of Missouri in early 2010 in Kansas City, Columbia and Springfield. The Missouri Association of Accredited Energy Professionals is a public benefit non-profit corporation registered with the State of Missouri on July 6th, 2009.