Programs to make homes more energy efficient can also alleviate health problems such as asthma, extreme heat and cold exposure, and falls. Insulation and air sealing not only save energy, but also protect residents from heat waves and cold snaps. Combined with efforts to identify and reduce asthma triggers such as pest management and removal of indoor irritants, these strategies can improve health significantly.
According to a recently released American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy report, nearly $3 billion can be saved by using existing energy efficiency programs to tackle health harms. For instance, the U.S. Department of Energy’s Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP) is improving some of the most inefficient homes by offering air sealing, insulation, and upgrades to HVAC units. WAP workers may also install smoke and CO detectors, fix faulty heating and combustion systems, and identify mold and moisture hazards.