Provincial government rebates are being made available to Alberta homeowners who want to upgrade their windows, insulation and hot water heaters.
The NDP government says starting April 28, rebates of up to $3,500 will be available for eligible products. The program covers energy efficient triple-glaze windows and tankless hot-water heaters, along with insulation for attics, basements and above-grade walls.
To qualify, homeowners must select from a list of Alberta-based registered contractors on efficiencyalberta.ca to install eligible products. Contractors will guide homeowners through the application, the province said. Rebates will go directly to the homeowner once each project is complete.
Contractors who wish to be added to the registry can apply at efficiencyalberta.ca. They must complete a short training course and meet the following criteria:
- Be a legally registered business in Alberta
- Have current liability insurance
- Have current Workers’ Compensation coverage
Environment Minister Shannon Phillips said the rebates will help people save money and boost the economy. Analysis from other provinces shows 50 to 70 jobs created for every million dollars invested in energy efficiency programs, she said.
“We have already seen many energy efficiency companies adding staff as businesses, as non-profits, as homeowners begin to look at their options,” she said at an announcement Tuesday. “We’ll only see more of that work happening as we begin to reinvest in this.”
Investing in energy efficiency is similar to putting money into infrastructure during an economic downturn, Phillips added.
“It’s a very good rate of return.”
The Home Improvement Rebate is part of the government’s $24-million program for the purchase of energy-efficient appliances and products.
In February, the province rolled out a program that allows consumers to get free energy efficient products such as LED light bulbs.
The program allows consumers who register to be contacted to make appointments with a private company called Ecofitt. Ecofitt staff come to homes to install lights, high-efficiency shower heads, power bars and self-adjusting thermostats.
The money is to come from the new carbon tax, which is increasing the cost of gasoline and home and business heating bills.
Earlier this year, the Alberta government also announced it is putting $36 million towards a rebate program to encourage rooftop solar panels on homes and businesses.
Phillips said the use of solar panels has doubled since 2015 and the goal is to have new panels on 10,000 Alberta rooftops within three years.
The program is expected to create 900 jobs in the next few years, and reduce solar installation costs by up to 30 per cent for homes and 25 per cent for businesses.
Phillips says the solar panels would reduce greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to taking 100,000 vehicles off the road.
— With files from The Canadian Press