Auckland Council has partnered with energy-efficient lightbulb producers Ecobulb and the Government’s support for energy education in communities (SEEC) programme to help 790 west Auckland households, struggling with the cost-of-living crisis, to save on their power bills.
The pilot, carried out between January and April this year, involved training a team of three locally recruited energy assessors to visit homes and replace lightbulbs and showerheads, clean heat pump filters and suggest ways households could reduce their energy consumption.
The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment provided $115,000 of funding to support the initiative with an additional $100,000 contributed by Auckland Council.
“This project was a win-win in helping households balance their budgets while combatting climate change, by reducing emissions from their homes,” says Planning, Environment and Parks Chair, Richard Hills.
“Most of the dollar savings each household made directly translate into carbon emissions savings which is great for the environment,” he adds.
A total of 10,052 energy saving Ecobulb LEDs and 721 energy and water efficient showerheads were supplied to homes who received energy assessments.
Actions taken by the 790 west Auckland households who had an assessment will save on average $609 per year and reduce carbon emissions equivalent to planting 13 trees each.
The energy saving actions agreed to be implemented by the 790 homes following their assessments, is estimated to equate to $481,000 in annual energy savings. It is also estimated the annual Carbon Dioxide Equivalent (CO2e) emission reductions will be more than 180 tonnes.
Two trained assessors from Visionwest have been working on the project for the past three months. A teacher from Massey High School was also among the team of local assessors who were in touch with the needs of local whānau who faced energy hardship.
Switching lights over to LEDs and changing high flow showerheads to more efficient models are cheap and easy actions that, if taken by households, could reduce peak electricity demand by 9 per cent and help combat climate change.
Now the pilot project in west Auckland is complete, Auckland Council will assess the results, with the view to working with community organisations in other parts of Auckland in the future, pending funding availability.
For a range of actions, to save money and care for the planet click here