WASHINGTON, D.C. – This week, U.S. Representatives Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA) and Matt Cartwright (D-PA) re-introduced the bipartisan Nonprofit Energy Efficiency Pilot Program Act to enable our country’s youth centers, schools, nonprofit hospitals and houses of worship to decrease their greenhouse gas emissions, environmental impacts, and cut their operating budgets to better serve their communities.
“Nonprofit organizations make countless contributions to our neighborhoods and communities while providing many citizens with unique opportunities to thrive,” said Rep. Fitzpatrick. “I am proud to join Rep. Cartwright in re-introducing the bipartisan Nonprofit Energy Efficiency Act, which will allow these nonprofit organizations to redirect the funds they save on energy expenses to other causes that serve our communities.”
“By helping nonprofit organizations cut their operating costs, we can empower them to make an even greater impact on our communities,” said Rep. Cartwright. “This bill with Democratic and Republican support will allow nonprofits to continue their important work in an environmentally friendly way while saving energy costs in the long run. These savings can be redirected toward their core programs that improve the lives of the people they serve.”
Commercial buildings account for approximately 20 percent of primary energy consumption and non-residential buildings consume more than $200 billion in annual energy costs in the United States. The federal government has created programs to support and incentivize energy efficiency improvements, usually in the form of tax credits and rebates, to ensure the owners and tenants in these commercial buildings are consuming energy in a smart way.
However, nonprofits like Boys & Girls Clubs, YMCAs, nonprofit hospitals, houses of worship, and museums are unable to take advantage of these programs due to their tax-exempt statuses. Since many nonprofits cannot invest in upfront improvements to their energy systems, this means that many are footing a more expensive energy bill. The Environmental Protection Agency, for example, estimates that religious congregations could reduce their energy costs by one-third through energy efficiency improvements alone.
Up to $200,000 in grants will be made available by the Nonprofit Energy Efficiency Act to help nonprofit organizations finance purchases of energy efficiency materials for their buildings.
This legislation has been endorsed by: Association of Art Museum Directors, General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, Interfaith Power & Light, The Jewish Federations of North America, New Evangelical Partnership for the Common Good, Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, YMCA of the U.S.A., Independent Sector, New Evangelical Partnership for the Common Good, Habitat for Humanity and The Henry Ford Foundation.
Additional co-sponsors in the House are Reps. Jake Auchincloss (D-MA-04), Sean Casten (D-IL-06), Gerry Connolly (D-VA-11), Dwight Evans (D-PA-03), Chrissy Houlahan (D-PA-06), Ro Khanna (D-CA-17), Jim Langevin (D-RI-02), Alan Lowenthal (D-CA-47), Doris Matsui (D-CA-06), Grace Meng (D-NY-06), Mark Pocan (D-WI-02), Kathleen Rice (D-NY-04), John Sarbanes (D-MD-03), Adam Schiff (D-CA-28), Mark Takano (D-CA-41), Paul Tonko (D-NY-20), Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC-At-Large), Albio Sires (D-NJ-08), Bill Pascrell (D-NJ-09), Tom Suozzi (D-NY-03), Madeleine Dean (D-PA-04) and Susan Wild (D-PA-07).
Full text of the bill can be viewed HERE.