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For Fresno EOC Energy Services, 2021 started off with an increased need for assistance. Through various state, federal, and private funding sources, Energy Services has provided housing improvement services that increase home’s energy efficiency and helps to support the goal of reducing poverty by proactively providing services that prevent extreme financial burden as it relates to home energy repairs. Weatherization services include: weather-stripping doors, window caulking, testing, repairing and replacing refrigerators, water heaters, heating and/or cooling systems, and cooking appliance repair or replacement, insulation, upgrading lighting, and duct repair or replacement. These services are provided to low-income households that could be financially jeopardized by having to repair any of these items.

First Quarter 2021 Highlights

Although numbers don’t tell the whole story of the impact of Energy Services, it certainly gives a glimpse into the value of the department. In the first quarter of 2021 alone, the department served 2,250 households with $1,204,105 in direct payments for electric and gas utility bills through the LIHEAP (Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program) CARES program and completed 43 Emergency Heating and Cooling Services projects saving families approximately $210,444–that represents savings/benefits of almost $1.4 million to the communities of Fresno County.

Serving the Community Over the Past Year

While the COVID-19 pandemic limited the ability of the department to work in homes, Energy Services participated in the Emergency Heating and Cooling Services program, along with submitting waivers for essential services. Through this program, they were able to access homes and provide replacement and repair services for anyone whose health and safety would be compromised had these repairs not been made. Over the past year, Energy Services has worked in approximately 345 homes throughout Fresno County, providing services averaging $4,285 per home. This includes replacing:

  • 117 Heating units
  • 45 Water heaters
  • 27 Air conditioners/cooling systems
  • 30 Refrigerators
  • 26 Cooking appliances
  • 18 Solar PV installations

Utility Bill Relief and Weatherization Services Provided in 2020

Through the LIHEAP program in 2020, Energy Services has been able to provide support to approximately 10,565 households for a total of $4,340,808 in relief of outstanding utility bills. Weatherization services were also provided to 180 households providing over $1,347,355 in home energy efficiency repairs.

It is important to note, however, that the impact of the work of Energy Services is both individual and communal. Installation of Solar PV’s significantly decreases electric bills for individuals but also increases the value of properties, creating an opportunity for wealth growth and development. Energy Services also provides education around energy use, PG&E billing programs, and energy conservation methods. The department is also involved in projects to provide electric automobiles to replace older, less-fuel efficient vehicles–doing so would work toward decreasing pollution and increasing air quality, a particular area of concern for low-income Fresno neighborhoods.

A special thank you to the Energy Services team for their work to improve the health and well-being– both physical and financial–of Fresno!

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