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Home Energy Score Pilot Program

In November 2010, Vice-President Biden and Energy Secretary Steven Chu announced the launch of the Home Energy Scoring Program, based on the Home Energy Scoring Tool created by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory's (Berkeley Lab's) Home Energy Saver development team. The team was led by Environmental Energy Technologies Division (EETD) researchers Evan Mills and Rich Brown, and the tool was based on Berkeley Lab's calculating engine for the Home Energy Saver—the DOE-2 building energy simulation program.

Home Energy Score website

In fall 2009, Vice-President Biden and the White House Council on Environmental Quality sent out the call to establish a program that would enable homeowners to quantify their home's energy efficiency and identify recommendations for improving it. To support that program, Berkeley Lab's Home Energy Saver team developed the Home Energy Scoring Tool, which enables users to quantify a home's energy performance, compare it on a scale of 1 to 10 to other homes in the area and to others in the same climate zone, and identify recommendations for improving the home's energy efficiency. Each recommended activity also includes information on the estimated utility bill savings, its payback period, and the quantity of greenhouse gas emission reductions.

The tool is used by a trained, certified home energy assessor, who can gather about 40 data inputs and provide a score in less than an hour. To ensure a balanced comparison, the tool divides the United States into 19 climate zones, so that it can provide an "apples- to-apples" energy use comparison among houses in the same climate.

The program is being piloted in 10 U.S. communities until late spring 2011, and it will be launched nationally late in 2011.

—Mark Wilson

US DOE Press Release: "Vice President Biden Launches Home Energy Scoring Program" EERE News. November 9, 2010.

The U.S. Department of Energy's Home Energy Score website.

This work is funded by the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy.

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