Over 60 diverse industry leaders—including Sealed—wrote to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) in support of the Home Energy Performance-based, Whole-house (HOMES) rebate program’s measured savings pathway and aggregators. In a letter addressed to DOE Secretary Jennifer Granholm, the coalition highlighted the market transformation benefits that could result from the measured savings pathway and aggregators’ […]
Over 60 diverse industry leaders—including Sealed—wrote to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) in support of the Home Energy Performance-based, Whole-house (HOMES) rebate program’s measured savings pathway and aggregators.
In a letter addressed to DOE Secretary Jennifer Granholm, the coalition highlighted the market transformation benefits that could result from the measured savings pathway and aggregators’ role in achieving those outcomes.
Aggregators are private, nonprofit, or government organizations that assume the risk and responsibility of procuring a clean energy resource in response to a market incentive.
The Inflation Reduction Act’s HOMES rebate program includes two ways to provide incentives to homeowners who pursue home energy retrofits:
- The modeled pathway
- The measured pathway
Under the modeled pathway, rebates are provided to homeowners based on energy models regardless of how much energy is actually saved.
Under the measured pathway, rebates are provided to homeowners through aggregators based on actual, measured energy savings. This pathway could result in numerous benefits for homeowners and contractors while also leading to higher energy savings.
States are currently deciding whether to offer the modeled or measured pathway (or both!) for the HOMES program.
(Check out our guide to the HOMES rebate program to learn more about these two pathways.)
Under the measured savings pathway, aggregators would play a crucial role in:
- Providing upfront capital to contractors and homeowners based on the expected value of measured savings rebates.
- Assuming 100% of the energy savings performance risk—if projects don’t save energy, aggregators don’t get paid (but contractors and homeowners still do).
- Investing in other value-adding services like lead generation, homeowner education, and financing.
The coalition’s letter to DOE Secretary Jennifer Granholm emphasized several advantages of the measured savings pathway, including:
- Enhanced consumer protection since aggregators and contractors have a direct financial incentive to achieve estimated energy savings, making it more likely that comprehensive, high-quality projects will be installed.
- Reduced administrative burdens for contractors, homeowners, and program administrators due to the flexibility of the pathway.
- Increased private capital investment in home energy retrofits.
- Improved accountability for public funds. By paying out rebates based on actual and measured savings, the pathway ensures that public dollars are used for exactly what they are intended to: actual energy and carbon emissions savings.
As the DOE prepares to release guidance to states for the HOMES program this summer, the letter provided three recommendations to ensure the success of the measured savings pathway:
- A clear definition of aggregators that aligns with the original legislative text of the HOPE for HOMES Act of 2021.
- Standardized and transparent protocols for measuring the results of the measured pathway.
- Flexibility to support innovation in a competitive marketplace, including explicit guidelines that enable aggregators to source energy data from credible sources.
The 63 companies that signed onto the letter are ready to—or are interested in—participating in the measured pathway as aggregators or aggregator supporters.
The more organizations that are willing to help homeowners access high-quality home energy retrofits that save the most energy and mitigate climate change, the better.
We’re proud to count ourselves as one of those companies at Sealed.
Check out the full letter to the DOE here.