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Hydro eyes North End homes for energy-efficient upgrades

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Manitoba Hydro and the province are targeting about 2,000 homes in Winnipeg’s North End to become more energy efficient.

The Power Smart Neighbourhood Project is open to owners and renters in William Whyte to replace old furnaces, upgrade insulation and improve water efficiency.

"This is just one good way to do community economic development," Premier Greg Selinger said today at the program’s launch.

The new project, involving the North End Community Renewal Corporation, gives eligible William Whyte residents access to two programs.

The first is Manitoba Hydro’s Low Income Energy Efficiency Program which allows for no-cost insulation and low-cost furnaces.

The second is the Power Smart Pay-As-You-Save financing program. It pays the upfront capital costs of eligible energy saving measures and uses monthly bill savings as payment.

Selinger said work done under the project will be contracted to Manitoba Green Retrofits and Inner City Renovations, two non-profit organizations that train and employ local people.

The project will be promoted through an outreach campaign that will include community events and door to-door canvassing. Manitoba Hydro will provide funding to community groups for coordination and promotion expenses and provide technical and marketing support.

Other measures to be considered under the program include free in-home energy reviews, improvements to sealing, caulking and weatherstripping and installing pipe wrapping.

Although the program was launched in Winnipeg, similar community projects are also underway in Brandon.

Selinger said other neighbourhoods in Winnipeg will also become eligible.

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