Getting up and going to work is hard enough every day. But add to your burden the need to remember every step of your job down the smallest detail and the fact that if you want to change careers, your lack of credentials might mean starting from scratch. These are the challenges faced by many of the weatherization professionals working to make U.S. homes more energy efficient.
A recent collaboration between the Energy Department, its National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), and the home energy performance industry is seeking to change this by supporting the weatherization workforce for which demand has exploded in recent years with consistent on-the-job tools, accredited training programs, and credentials that lead to better-defined career paths.
The Energy Department's weatherization program has been in existence for more than 30 years and has provided weatherization services to more than 6.4 million low-income households, reducing building energy use by 36%. To shepherd the weatherization industry into a new technological era, the Department's Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP), with support from the WAP National Training and Technical Assistance Plan, introduced the Guidelines for Home Energy Professionals project and with it, three goals:
Three years ago, NREL was tapped by the Energy Department to lead the project, and the end result was a new tool for weatherization processionals Standard Work Specifications (SWS). SWS define the minimum requirements needed to ensure that the work performed during energy upgrades in single-family, multifamily, and manufactured homes is effective, durable, and safe.
"NREL was chosen because of our ability to bring industry together for market
|Contact: David Glickson|
DOE/National Renewable Energy Laboratory