Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy Programs


Cooperative Energy Futures

  • Weatherization Work Parties:  CEF helps interested residents host house or block weatherization work parties for their friends and neighbors. These parties include hands-on training in do-it-yourself air sealing, appliance efficiency, and basic efficiency product use, support neighbors in teaming up to weatherize their homes, and offer basic, low-cost efficiency products at bulk prices. Neighborhoods are welcome to subsidize events (normally $50 per event) or materials, link events to existing block groups or neighborhood activities, and tailor event content to neighborhood goals, renter/owner statuses or language. CEF has delivered training content in English and Spanish, and has more limited experience training trainers who speak Somali.

  • Neighborhood Insulation: For homeowners and landlords, CEF supports coordinated community contracting from qualified insulation and air sealing contractors to secure discounts from group purchasing and ensure quality control of work performed. This program can help residents take the next step from other home assessment and direct install programs, especially if they are unable to access low-income weatherization. Groups of residents seek bids from pre-qualified contractors, receive CEF support in evaluating work priorities, bids, and financing, and benefit from performance testing that verifies the energy savings and home health impacts of work performed.
  • Solar Leasing: Building off past solar bulk-buying programs, CEF has just launched a solar leasing program that will enable homeowners (or renters with landlord support) with good solar exposure and who receive state rebates to have solar installed at their home at no upfront cost. Solar electric systems will be paid off for 15 years with payments equivalent to 75% of the energy savings generated by the system, after which the system provides free power for 10+ more years. This specific opportunity is time sensitive based on state rebate programs, but future residential solar efforts will be available. The first round closed Feb 28th 2014, but future rounds will open in early 2015.
  • Community Solar: For residents without good solar access, and particularly for renters without landlord support, community solar can enable low-to-moderate level investments by a wide range of community members in cost-effective solar arrays located on large community buildings. CEF supports neighborhoods in evaluating the multiple models available, developing projects on local host sites, and organizing the base of community investors to finance and own these projects.

Center for Energy & Environment

  • Home Energy Squad Enhanced: This residential energy efficiency program is designed to help homeowners save energy and money.  Our team of trusted energy consultants will come to your home, evaluate your energy savings opportunities and based on what your home needs, install materials:  door weather stripping, a water heater blanket, programmable thermostat, CFLs and high efficiency water fixtures.  They will also perform a blower door test, check your home’s insulation, water heater and heating system, and provide you with next step information all for $70. 
  • Remodeling Advisor Visits: This free service includes an informational visit from a qualified technician who can help identify and prioritize improvements in the home. 
  • 2.99% Home Energy Loan: The Lending Center at CEE offers a 2.99% Home Energy Loan for single family homeowners who have received a Home Energy Squad Enhanced visit. 
  • Home Energy Loan Program: This 4.99% Home Energy loan is available to all qualified Minnesota homeowners to make eligible energy upgrades to their home, including geothermal and solar projects.
  • Home Improvement Loan Program: This statewide program offers low interest loans to homeowners to make a variety of home improvements. Eligible projects include interior or exterior improvements.

CenterPoint Energy

  • Audits: CenterPoint offers a Walk-Through Audit that provides a general overview and visual inspection of your home ($25 co-pay) and a Standard Energy Audit which provides a comprehensive in-depth technical analysis of your energy use that addresses problems like inadequate insulation, window condensation or ice dams ($100 co-pay).
  • Boiler/Furnace Tune Up & Replacement: Rebates are offered for tune-ups on natural gas furnace or boiler that can ensure your heating system is operating at maximum efficiency and reduce costly breakdowns. ($25 rebate offered every other year).   For boiler or furnace replacements, rebates are offered for high efficiency models. Depending on the efficiency rating, rebates range from $150-$500. An additional $25 rebate is offered for a new programmable thermostat installed with any qualifying heating system.
  • Water heaters: Rebates are available for new high-efficiency natural gas water heaters. Depending on the energy factor, rebates range from $70-$350.
  • Air Sealing & Insulation and Wall Insulation: CenterPoint is making changes to their insulation programs for air sealing & insulation and wall insulation.  More information will be available later in 2014.
  • Low flow devices: Free low flow showerheads and faucet aerators are available to CenterPoint Energy natural gas heating customers. Customers may receive up to a maximum of three showerheads and three aerators.
  • Free energy efficiency kit: Valued at $35, this absolutely free do-it-yourself starter kit is a great way to help you begin to save energy at home.  It includes a low flow showerhead (1.5 gpm, chrome), a low flow kitchen swivel faucet aerator (1.5 gpm), a low flow bathroom faucet aerator (1.5 gm), rope caulk (gray) – 90 ft., high-performance EDPM weatherstrip (brown), insulating window film (3-pack), outlet/switchplate foam gasket covers (24-pack), water heater temperature gauge card, and energy efficiency educational materials. 
  • Fireplace Rebates: CenterPoint Energy is offering a $75 rebate for the installation of a natural gas direct vent fireplace that has electronic ignition.

Community Action Minneapolis

  • Low Income Weatherization: the Low-Income Weatherization Program sponsored by CenterPoint Energy provides free wall and attic insulation and air sealing to help improve the energy efficiency of eligible homes.  Some homes may also be eligible for replacement of old, malfunctioning heating equipment with new, high efficiency natural gas furnaces, boilers or water heaters.  Income Eligibility Guidelines are based on 200% of Federal Poverty Income Guidelines ($22,980 for a single-person household or $47,100 for a 4 person household).

Xcel Energy

  • Central A/C rebate:  Qualifying customers who purchase and install a new, eligible central air conditioner with a quality installation from one of our registered cooling program contractors may receive up to $450 cash back. 
  • Windsource: You can purchase renewable energy through Windsource®, one of the nation’s largest voluntary renewable energy programs for less than $1 per month.