Newly trained veterans deliver energy savings for active-duty marine
On Tuesday in Springfield Virginia, community members gathered at the home of active-duty Marine Staff Sergeant Chris Franke to celebrate his home energy upgrade by the Military House Energy Efficiency Project (MHEEP).
MHEEP is a unique initiative that brings together the Sierra Club, Veterans Green Jobs, Laborers International Union of North America (LIUNA), Ardently Green and the DC Project to honor our military heroes, create green jobs and cut residential energy use.
The project takes a two-pronged approach that honors veterans’ service to our country by providing green job training while also honoring active-duty service members with complimentary, cost-saving home energy upgrades. Veterans are trained in LIUNA’s weatherization course.
"The Military Housing Energy Efficiency Project is a perfect example of diverse partners coming together to solve multiple challenges with a common solution," says Allison Chin, a member of the Sierra Club's National Board of Directors. "This project has the potential to significantly reduce our carbon footprint, tackle the unemployment crisis and bring down the electricity bills for our military families."
By the end of the celebration on Tuesday morning, Marine Staff Sergeant Chris Franke’s home was a shining success. His family’s home now proudly boasts energy-saving attic insulation, sealed heating ducts and hot-water-heater tank insulation. Newly trained veterans completed all of these improvements.
MHEEP has provided home energy upgrades to more than 30 service members throughout the Northern Virginia area. These improvements can reduce household energy costs by an average of $350 a year. The goal is to upgrade a total of 50 military homes by the end of this year.
This celebration in Virginia took place a few days before Veterans Day—a day set aside to honor all who have served in defense of our country. Please take a few moments to read Sierra Club Chairman Carl Pope’s perspective on Veterans Day and more on what Sierra Club is doing to celebrate.