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Public Housing Environmental and Conservation Clearinghouse

Energy Performance Contracting

Energy Performance Contracting (EPC) is an innovative financing technique that uses cost savings from reduced energy consumption to repay the cost of installing energy conservation measure. Read more...

Upgraded Utility Benchmarking Tool Available to PHAs

HUD information on benchmarking is available at HUD Exchange. Please see HUD guidance on Utility Benchmarking.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has upgraded a free online utility benchmarking tool that can help you as a PHA identify what your properties’ energy use is, ultimately allowing you to determine how to reduce your energy and save on utilities. EPA’s tool, the Portfolio Manager, is a free, web-based benchmarking tool that allows users to monitor the water and energy consumption of the buildings in their portfolio. With this tool, interested PHAs can track their weather-normalized utility consumption by month or year, allowing you to compare energy use between buildings, target improvements to reduce your energy consumption and costs, and determine the effectiveness of energy improvements.

PHAs who have used the tool and want to see the upgrades, can visit EPA’s upgrade page.

PHAs who are new to the tool, can get started here: Energy Star Benchmarking Starter Kit.

Smoke Free Public Housing

Effective February 3, 2017, all Public Housing Authorities (PHAs) are required to implement smoke-free policies. These policies must be in place within 18 months of the effective date of the smoke-free rule, no later than August 3, 2018. For additional information, please see the dedicated smoke-free web page.

Smoke Free Resources

Sustainable and Green Topics

Rate Reduction Incentive (RRI)                                                                                                                                                                                                         The RRI is a financial incentive for PHAs that pursue special and significant efforts beyond what is required by statute and/or regulation to reduce their utility rate. PHAs are eligible for the RRI if a PHA takes action beyond normal public participation in rate-making proceedings, such as wellhead purchase of natural gas, administrative appeals, or legal action to reduce the rate it pays for utilities. PHAs with an eligible action may retain one-half (50%) of the annual savings realized from their actions, or 100% of savings if the RRI is done in conjunction with an EPC. To learn more about the RRI, including requirements for submitting an RRI request and documentation of realized savings, see the current Notice PIH 2019-24 “Guidance on the Rate Reduction Incentive in Public Housing.” 

Video Guidance and Training Available at https://www.hudexchange.info/trainings/courses/rri-training-for-pha-staff/

Small Rural Freezing Rolling Base (SRFRB)
The Economic Growth Act allows eligible PHAs to freeze their three-year rolling base consumption level (RBCL) that is used to calculate Operating Fund grants. PHAs will be able to freeze consumption using the average annual consumption for the most recent three-year period for a period of up to 20 years. This three-year period is defined as the SR-FRB and may be subject to adjustments as specified in this notice. All cost savings accrue to the PHA and may be used for any eligible public housing purpose at the PHA’s discretion.

[Image - Apartment]Energy Conservation
All Public Housing Authorities (PHAs) are required to implement HUD policies in support of National Energy Conservation goals by requiring PHAs to conduct energy audits and undertake certain cost effective energy conservation measures. When cost effective and funding is available, PHAs should install energy conservation measures with the shortest paybacks periods first to help fund longer payback energy conservation measure.

[Image - Mattress]Integrated Pest Management (IPM)
IPM focuses on pest prevention, eliminating sources and using less toxic materials to control pests such as bedbugs, cockroaches and ants.

[Image - Water Droplet]Water Conservation
Water conservation benchmarking is a very useful starting point for PHAs to target water saving opportunities and can help PHAs overall asset management strategy.


[Image - AC Unit]Operations & Maintenance
O&M includes all aspects of running a building over the course of its useful life. Because of the far-reaching nature of O&M, a well designed and properly executed program is critical to the overall success.


[Image - Eco friendly person with suitcase]PIH Green Initiative
The PIH Green Initiative is about spotlighting the latest topics related to the environmental movement known as "Going Green" This month's article is about Green Building.


[Image - Lead Paint]Hazardous Materials
Lead Threat Thrives: Years after poisoning, a Queensbury family still fearing its effects.



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