News for those who live, work and play in the Santiam Canyon

Energy incentives offered for Canyon rebuilding

Reporter for The Canyon Weekly

Energy Trust of Oregon and two state agencies are offering incentives for those rebuilding in the Santiam Canyon after the 2020 wildfires.

The incentives could be worth up to $16,000 depending on the type of building and the income level of the property owner.

Energy Trust, the Oregon Department of Revenue (ODOE) and the state’s Building Code Division (BCD) are offering the cash grants to make energy-efficient upgrades in homes and buildings more affordable and accessible.

The more energy-efficient the home or building the higher the value of the cash incentives that are available, said Energy Trust officials. The incentives are available for site-built residential homes, manufactured homes, commercial buildings, multifamily buildings and public buildings.

“This new support will help Oregonians who have faced tragedy rebuild family homes that use less energy and are more resilient in the face of future disasters,”said Michael Colgrove, executive director of Energy Trust. 

A key goal of the programs is fire hardening, said BCD officials.

Fire hardening includes steps that can be taken to make a home or business more resistant to damage from a wildfire, such as using materials for siding and/or roofing that resist ignition during a wildfire, installing fire resistant windows to protect openings, or using attic ventilation devices that help reduce ember intrusion.

Fire hardening, along with creating defensible space, also decreases the likelihood that a nearby fire will ignite a structure, reduces the potential for damage and it makes the community more resistant to the spread of wildfire.

Here is a look at the types of upgrades that are covered by the incentive programs:

–Advanced framing and lighting

–High-performance windows

–Efficient appliances and heating and cooling

–Exterior rigid insulation

–Unvented attics that save energy and lower fire risk

Eligibility is limited to property owners rebuilding a structure deemed by state or county officials to be destroyed or damaged in wildfires between Aug. 1, 2020 and Sept. 30, 2020. 

Applicants must work with the county in which their property is located.

Here is a look at how to contact the agencies involved to apply and receive more information:

Energy Trust: https://www.energytrust.org/about/who-we-are/mission-vision-values/rebuilding-from-wildfires/

Oregon Department of Energy: https://www.oregon.gov/energy/Incentives/Pages/EEWR.aspx

Oregon Building Codes Division: https://www.oregon.gov/bcd/Pages/firehardening.aspx

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