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Success Stories Archive

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These success stories date from 2013 and earlier.

Jump to state: CT | DE | ME | MD | MA | NH | NY | RI | VT


Energy Saving Measures at the Calabro Cheese Corporation
The Calabro Cheese Corporation (Calabro Cheese), a family-owned manufacturer in East Haven, Connecticut, has been making quality Italian cheeses for 60 years, using only fresh, locally obtained ingredients and traditional old-world recipes.  Calabro Cheese turned to The United Illuminating Company to help identify energy upgrades for cost-saving benefits to its 74,000-square foot facility.

 Through the CEEF’s Energize Connecticut programs, Calabro Cheese completed several energy-saving measures in 2013, including an exterior and interior lighting retrofit; refrigeration motor replacement and evaporator fan controls; steam trap repair and replacement; insulated steam trap jackets; and a new compressed air distribution system.  Annual energy savings of 148,949 kWh of electricity and 62,556 ccf of natural gas are expected as a result. These measures were supported by a $56,457 incentive, partially funded by RGGI proceeds. 

 With the incentive, the measures are expected to pay for themselves over the next ten years by providing an estimated savings of $95,769 annually.

SuccessStories CromwellCromwell Schools Now Powered By the Sun

Thanks in part to an investment from the Connecticut Clean Energy Finance Investment Authority (CEFIA), the town of Cromwell has installed over 300 kilowatts (kW) of photovoltaic (PV) solar capacity at its elementary and middle schools — a 181 kW system at Edna C. Stevens Elementary School and a 166 kW system at Cromwell Middle School. The town of Cromwell used a CEFIA grant of $850,000, partially funded by RGGI proceeds, to pay for the $1,882,061 required to purchase and install the PV solar systems.

Connecticut Children's HospitalCT Children’s Hospital Cuts Energy Costs and Improves Patient Comfort

The Children’s Medical Center in Hartford is just one of nearly 4,600 Connecticut businesses to cut energy costs through the state’s utility-administered energy efficiency programs in 2010. Thanks to finacial incentives provided through the Energy Opportunities Program and funded in part by RGGI proceeds, the Hospital installed a new, high-efficiency heating and cooling system, which will improve comfort for patients – and save the hospital more than $23,000 per year (story).

SuccessStories_SolarCT High School Benefits from New Solar Generation System

SunLight General Capital has begun construction on a $1 million, 200 kW solar electric power generating project at Ansonia High School in Astonia, Conn. The high school -- the city's largest consumer of energy -- is expected to generate nearly 230,000 kWh of clean, solar energy each year as a result of the project. The project, funded by SunLight General Capital and a RGGI-funded grant of more than $400,000 from the Connecticut Clean Energy Fund, will be built at no expense to the City of Ansonia (story).

OrchardFamily-Run Market in CT Boosts Bottom Line through Energy Efficiency

Bishop Orchards Farm market, a family-run market in Guilford, Connecticut, is just one business to realize energy savings with help from Connecticut’s Small Business Energy Advantage Program (SBEA). SBEA, which is funded in part by RGGI, provided the market with a complete interior lighting upgrade, as well as incentives for large-scale efficiency measures, including the installation of night covers for open coolers and efficient motors for refrigerated units. "SBEA has given us the tools to reduce our energy use, save resources and keep our costs stable,” said Keith Bishop, the market’s President and CEO. “We would not have been able to do this large project without the financial incentives from the SBEA program” (story).

CT Restaurant Boosts Bottom Line with Energy Savings

Chick’s Drive-In, a landmark restaurant in West Haven, Connecticut, was just one of nearly 1,900 small businesses to benefit from Connecticut’s Small Business Energy Advantage Program (SBEA) in 2010. Through SBEA, which is partially funded by RGGI, the restaurant installed more efficient lighting and refrigeration equipment. As a result, the owner is now saving hundreds of dollars on his electricity bill each month. The eatery will save 468,000 kilowatt-hours of electricity—the equivalent of planting 56 acres of trees or saving more than 17,000 gallons of gas—over the lifetime of the new equipment (story).


The Delaware Green for Green Program
The Green for Green program is a residential “green” construction program first offered in the summer of 2010 that provides homebuyer rebates after the purchase of a certified green home. The Green for Green program leverages existing national green certification programs to promote the construction of new green homes through customer rebates. The program offers incentives ranging from $1,000 to $4,500 to customers who purchase newly constructed homes certified by the by the National Green Building Standard (NGBS), Leadership in Environmental and Energy Design (LEED), or that have a Home Energy Rating System (HERS) of 59 or less. The program is implemented by the Home Builders Association of Delaware (HBADE) with funding from the Delaware SEU.

The Green for Green program has supported over 160 rebates which have totaled over $516,000. The energy and water efficiency and weatherization measures that are installed in these homes will save residents $3 million on their bills over the lifetime of the home. Currently, there are 17 home builders certified in the program and over 50 Delaware communities have participated. The Central Delaware and New Castle Habitats for Humanity programs are enrolled in this program, saving low-income Delawareans energy and money.

“Our goal is to transform the homebuilding culture in Delaware by creating demand for energy efficient homes, this has been a popular program for home buyers,” said Tony DePrima, DESEU Executive Director.

SuccessStories CromwellDelaware Builds State's First Utility-Scale Solar PV Facility with RGGI

The Dover SUNPark is Delaware's first utility-scale photovoltaic (PV) facility. The PV facility is located on 103 acres in Dover, Delaware and has a nameplate capacity of 10 MW. The SUNPark creates enough energy to power 1,500 Delaware homes. The construction of the Dover SUNPark employed 42 people a week over a 30 week construction project schedule, with the majority of jobs being filled by local Delawareans. The project uses state-of-the-art SunPower E20 solar panels, one of the most efficient panels on the market today. To further increase the efficiency of the project SunPower tracker technology was also installed on each of the panels. SunPower tracker technology allows the panels to follow the sun's movement, thereby increasing sunlight captured by 25 percent.

SuccessStories_HybridCity of Newark Reduces Costs and Emissions with Hybrid Vehicles

Thanks in part to a RGGI funded grant, the City of Newark, Delaware replaced three aging vehicles with new hybrid models that will save the town money at the pump, as well as reduce its environmental footprint. The new vehicles, with 41 mgp, are replacing vehicles that were getting 15 mpg. "I am thrilled to finally be adding hybrid cars to the City’s fleet. It is something we have wanted to do for quite a while. Thankfully, this grant provided the necessary financial assistance to put us on the path towards a greener fleet," said Mayor Vance Funk (story).

SuccessStories_GreenRoofUniversity of Delaware Cools Labs with Green Roof

600 students at the University of Delaware are enjoying a cooler learning environment with a new green roof at the College of Engineering's Colburn Lab - where temperatures were known to reach 86 degrees. "Once again the University is demonstrating how environmental innovations can address the interrelated challenges of improving air quality, reducing energy consumption, managing stormwater effectively, and reducing operating expenses," Secretary O’Mara said. "This green roof will save UD thousands of dollars, while providing significant educational opportunities and environmental benefits for years to come." The project was made possible by grants from RGGI, DuPont, and two University of Delaware programs (story).


Medical Arts Center at Franklin Community Health Network
The new Medical Arts Center at Franklin Community Health Network in Farmington is designed to look like an old-fashioned Maine woods lodge. But in this new building—and the renovated main hospital—state-of-the-art technology is hard at work to save energy while delivering critical medical care. Efficiency Maine provided $59,532 in incentives to help the hospital make several improvements:

  • High-efficiency fluorescents now provide all the lighting, with occupancy and daylight sensors to turn them off when they’re not needed.
  • HVAC systems use highly efficient motors, while delivering precise temperature and humidity levels to operating rooms.
  • Variable-speed drives now cut motor power consumption in half.

These energy-efficiency measures reduce Franklin Community Health Network’s electric bills by 28%. With incentives from Efficiency Maine, they’ll pay back in less than 6 months; estimated annual savings will be over $45,000 in electricity and $3,000 in labor.

SuccessStories CromwellA More Efficient Cold Storage System at Wyman's of Maine

Wyman's of Maine is a family-owned company with expertise in growing and marketing wild blueberries. Over the course of four generations, the company has perfected the science of fresh freezing fruit to maintain optimum flavor and nutritional benefits.

During harvest, Wyman's processes 1.2 million pounds of blueberries a day. Using RGGI funds through Efficiency Maine's Large Customer Program, Wyman's upgraded its cold storage refrigeration system with a nearly $260,000 incentive toward the total project cost of $1.4 million. The new high-efficiency system consists of two compressors, one fitted with a variable frequency drive for more efficient part-time operation, and oversized condensers and evaporators which lower system pressure. An automated system now controls the equipment remotely, and the existing roll-up doors were replaced with more efficient air curtains that allow employees to move freely in and out of the cold-storage area. The air curtains help maintain optimum cold storage temperatures.

Maine Wild Blueberry CompanyMaine Wild Blueberry Co. Improves Competitiveness through Efficiency

With help from a RGGI-funded grant provided by Efficiency Maine, Maine Wild Blueberry Co. has invested nearly $900,000 to improve its competiveness though energy efficiency. Grant funds are being invested to replace five out-of-date refrigeration units and air coils with a state-of-the-art efficient system – saving the company more than $171,000 in electricity costs annually. The savings are enabling the company to maintain competitive pricing and enhance job security for its 40 employees (story).

SuccessStories_ClassroomUniversity of Maine Receives Energy Incentives for Advanced Research Center

With help from a grant provided by Efficiency Maine, and funded in part by RGGI, the University of Maine's Advanced Structures and Composites Center is recieving $36,909 in incentives to offset the additional costs associated with the University's new high performance building. Grant funds help support energy-efficiency measures incorporated into the design and construction of the new facility last year at the center of the UMaine campus (story).

Industry Energy EfficiencySappi Saves on Energy with Help from $300K Efficiency Grant

Sappi Fine Paper’s Somerset Mill is improving its competiveness and its environmental stewardship with a $300,000 RGGI-funded energy efficiency grant provided through Efficiency Maine’s Large Projects Grant Program. The grant covers about half the cost of the project, which is expected to save enough electricity annually to power 300 typical Maine households for a full year (story).


Maryland businesses thrive with upgrades from RGGI-funded program
Thanks to assistance from the Jane E. Lawton Conservation Loan Program, the Buccini/Pollin Group (BPG) completed approximately $1,031,500 in energy and cost-saving improvements at its BWI Hilton facility located in Linthicum Heights, Maryland. The improvements were designed to save money, increase operational efficiencies, and reduce the environmental impact of the hotel.

BPG partnered with Trane Energy Services to complete a formal audit of the facility to identify energy conservation measures (ECM). The measures included installation of lighting retrofits, engineered common area controls, and guest room occupancy controls. The installed solutions are projected to save at least $158,400 in energy costs annually.

The project was financed through a combination of a rebate program and a loan program. A $500,000 rebate was obtained through BG&E’s Smart Energy Savers Program in connection with the EmPOWER Maryland initiative. The remaining $531,500 was financed through a low-interest loan through Maryland Energy Administration’s Jane E. Lawton Conservation Loan Program, which was partially capitalized using RGGI revenue.

“We are absolutely thrilled with the savings and our guests and associates are benefitting from the improvement in building temperature comfort and lighting” says Christie Blomquist, Director of Facilities, PM Hospitality Strategies. As a result of the energy-saving improvements, the BWI Hilton will save 1,181,406 kWh of electricity and 30,914 Therms of heating fuel per year. This energy savings equates to a reduction of 1,089 short tons of CO2 or CO2 equivalent emissions annually.

SuccessStories MarylandMore Than A Million Dollars Saved Through RGGI-Funded Program 

Since 2009, nearly 2,000 households have received energy efficiency upgrade services from Civic Works, an urban service corps dedicated to strengthening communities in and around Baltimore. The non-profit used EmPOWER Clean Energy Communities grant funding, provided by RGGI proceeds, to help finance the projects. Estimates suggest that these energy and cost-saving projects are likely to save more than 700 MWh annually, which is the equivalent of more than $1.5 million dollars saved over the life of the measures. This tremendous savings would not have been possible without Civic Works.

125 Low-to-Moderate Income Families Recieve Energy Upgrades in Maryland

With $906,000 in EmPOWER grants from the Maryland Energy Administration, funded in part by RGGI, the United Communities Against Poverty (UCAP) has helped more than 125 low-to-moderate income families in Prince George's County with energy audits, weatherization, and energy upgrades. Nakisha Matthews, a single mother of two, received audits and upgrades through the program. She said, “I have seen a significant decrease in my utility bills since having my home weatherized. I was told that 75 percent of my energy was leaving my home after having the energy audit done. I was shocked. UCAP and its team took time to reduce the energy that was leaving my home and gave me tips on what I could do to reduce my energy consumption even more" (story).

SuccessStories_WindowsPublic Housing Residents in MD to Save 50% on Heating Energy

Thanks to two grants totaling $28,500 — $21,000, the residents of four St. Mary's public housing units on Lexwood Drive will save nearly 50% on their heating and cooling costs. Funding was provided as part of a $2 million RGGI-funded grant program aimed at boosting energy efficiency in Maryland. The Maryland Energy Administration expects the grants will help 1,400 state residents, saving them a total of $5.1 million in energy costs over the lifespan of the projects. "This is a very helpful amount of money and it has a direct impact on families who were paying a large amount of their monthly budget," said Dennis Nicholson, executive director of the housing authority (story).


Improvements in Gloucester, Massachusetts
RGGI auction proceeds have enabled the historic seaport of Gloucester, Massachusetts to cut greenhouse gas emissions and significantly reduce energy consumption and costs. Gloucester was designated a “Green Community” by way of achieving five statutory clean energy benchmarks, and has accessed RGGI funds through grants available to all 136 designated municipalities. In particular, the four projects highlighted below leveraged approximately $198,200 in Green Communities funds and gained an additional $156,664 in utility incentives. RGGI funds contributed primarily to controls and lighting upgrades.

At Gloucester High School, the city completed two efficiency projects using both Green Communities grant funding and utility financing. The school upgraded its boiler controls, improving efficiency by allowing pumps and the boiler to be enabled and disabled on command. Automated building controls were replaced, allowing for better building scheduling and demand control ventilation. Combined, these two projects are projected to reduce natural gas use by 17,180 therms annually.

At O’Maley Middle School, RGGI funds allowed the school to upgrade to automated controls for air handling units. This is estimated to reduce electric and fuel oil consumption 5 percent annually at one of the city’s top four energy consumers.

A fourth project at the Sawyer Free Library involved retrofitting or replacing the building’s interior and select exterior lighting. This measure alone is projected to reduce electric consumption for another of Gloucester’s top energy consumers by 20 percent.

Realizing these energy savings through energy efficiency projects is “exciting because it’s part of being a Green Community,” said Tom Daniels, the city’s community development director. “It saves money, and it’s good for the environment,” he said.

SuccessStories UMassCombined Heat and Power at the University of Massachusetts Medical School

The University of Massachusetts Medical School (UMMS) now meets a majority of its Worcester campus' electrical heating and cooling demands through its onsite power plant. In 2012, the University expanded its existing Combined Heat and Power (CHP) plant by installing an additional 7.5 MW "Topping Cycle" solar combustion gas turbine/generator. This high-efficiency CHP system includes a Heat Recovery Steam Generator (HRSG) that converts waste heat from the combustion turbine exhaust into steam, which is then used to generate additional electricity and heating. The steam is also used to generate chilled water from steam driven chillers for cooling. As a result, the expansion of the central utility plant has increased the university's electrical generation capacity from 10 MW to 17.5 MW, and the efficiency of the expanded plant has increased about 15 percent.

Installing SolarCarlson Orchards Goes Solar, Generates 80% of Electricity On-Site

Carlson Orchards, one of the largest orchards in Massachusetts, is investing $595,000 in RGGI proceeds to install 1,050 solar photovoltaic panels on its property. The $1.1 million 220 KW solar power plant will supply 80% of the farm's energy, leading to significant energy bill savings. Only 20% of the farm’s needs is now supplied from the grid (story).

MA Town Realizes Energy Savings

After 80 years of constant use, the Town Hall in Athol, MA, had become an uncomfortable place for its 29 employees. All that changed when Athol received a $98,000 grant for new Energy Star-certified windows under Massachusetts’s Green Communities Program earlier this year. The grant, funded by RGGI, is enabling Athol to realize significant energy bill savings while improving working conditions for its employees (story).

New Hampshire

Manufacturing LED Head Lights Becomes More Energy Efficient
Osram Sylvania located in Hillsboro, New Hampshire manufactures automotive lighting, including LED lighting products for the automotive industry. The manufacturing process utilizes a significant amount of compressed air. Replacing two compressors rated at 850 HP with one 800 HP 3-stage centrifugal air compressor with a variable frequency drive resulted in savings of 269,000 kilowatt-hours annually. In addition, this improvement resulted in better overall system control as the existing compressors had incompatible controllers, making it difficult to optimize the sequencing during startup and normal operation.

The Osram Sylvania Hillsborough facility, which is the Automotive Lighting’s lamp headquarters, has many first-in-the-industry products to its credit, including red neon for brake light applications; amber neon for turn signals; fluorescent for auto interior; high-intensity discharge headlights; plastic headlights; halogen innovations; miniature lights with a wedge base for improved reliability; and many others. The facility also houses a laboratory devoted to new innovations in automotive lighting. Also, the Hillsborough facility is ISO 14001 certified, showing a deep commitment to management of environmental issues.

SuccessStories ManufacturedHomes smallMore Efficient Weatherization of Manufactured Homes Save Time and Money

It's a simple goal: Make weatherization more like an assembly line and less like an artisan's workshop. The NH Community Loan Fund and the state's five Community Action Agencies achieved that goal by weatherizing 382 homes in 37 resident-owned manufactured housing communities.

A $2 million grant from New Hampshire's Regional Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reduction Fund leveraged a $600,000 U.S. Department of Energy Weatherization Innovation Pilot Program grant and about $1 million in state Systems Benefit Charge funds. Using these funds, the Community Action Agencies trained crews statewide in how to weatherize manufactured homes while taking advantage of "close proximity production": moving from home to home within a single manufactured-housing community until all of the eligible homes were improved.

SuccessStories_plasticsShelburne Plastics Stays in New Hampshire With $750,000 Energy Savings Grant

Shelburne Plastics modernized its Londonderry, NH plant with energy-efficient equipment that will save 1.75 million kWh per year and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. “With a loan from the NH Business Finance Authority, we were able to move two production lines to New Hampshire, purchase new equipment and retain 25 jobs,” commented Shelburne Plastics President and CEO Eugene Torvend (story).

New York

NY Family Reduces GHG Emissions with EmPower New York Program
New York State used RGGI proceeds to help Susan Konstanty reduce GHG emissions at her fam¬ily home and make the home more comfortable. The Cape Cod-style home in Gasport, NY was drafty and wasted energy. After it was determined the Konstantys were income-eligible for the EmPower New York program, a contractor who was sent to inspect the home identified a need for and installed better insulation in the basement and roof and provided tips to reduce electricity use.

Susan Konstanty said that now she can set the thermostat at 65 degrees during the day without impacting the family’s comfort level, rather than the previous 68-degree setting. The home’s fuel consumption is lower as a result, avoiding 10,483 pounds of greenhouse gas emissions the family would have emitted without the energy efficiency measures. Susan’s story is one example of how $39 million invested through Residential Efficiency Services Programs have helped improve the energy efficiency of more than 18,000 homes in NYS through 2013.

SuccessStories Hydrogen smallHomegrown Hydrogen Gas Recycling Technology Helps Reduce GHG Emissions

New York State is using RGGI proceeds to help H2Pump LLC, based in Latham, New York, commercialize high-tech, energy-saving equipment that recycles hydrogen used in industrial processes, thus significantly reducing the use of petroleum and subsequent GHG emissions from hydrogen production and transport. In many industrial processes, including metal heat-treating and semiconductor fabrication, hydrogen is used to create a specialized atmosphere for chemical processes and is released into the atmosphere after a single use. The hydrogen provides an oxygen-free atmosphere that enhances productivity and product quality. The manufacturing of that hydrogen, however, requires petroleum products, as does the transportation of the hydrogen to manufacturing facilities.

Completed Home Energy Efficiency Projects Double from 2010 to 2011 in New York's Hudson Valley

Through New York's Green Jobs, Green New York Program, funded in part by RGGI, 550 energy efficiency projects were completed in New York's Hudson Valley and Westchester County during 2011. The projects resulted in average annual savings of more than $800 per participating household, which will impact the homeowners’ energy bills for years to come. Home Performance with ENERGY STAR®, conducted by NYSERDA, uses a “whole-house” comprehensive assessment approach to home energy usage and recommends improvements for saving energy.

Home ImprovementNew Yorkers Save on Energy

Caroline and Arthur Holmwood of Greenfield Center, New York, saw their energy bill decline by 50 percent after receiving a new boiler and improved insulation through EmPower New York.The EmPower New York program, which incentivizes energy education, energy audits and on-the-spot energy efficiency upgrades in oil-heated low-income households, saves participating homeowners an average of 125 gallons of oil and approximately $500 annually. “Over the summer our electric bill was cut in half compared to the year before, and we expect savings during the heating season as well from our new boiler. It’s 97 percent efficient,” Mrs. Holmwood said (story).

Solar InstallationNY Community College Saves with RGGI-Funded Solar Panels

Cayuga Community College (CCC) recently received a RGGI-funded grant to install 126 solar panels on the gymnasium roof at its Auburn, N.Y. campus. As a result, the college will save approximately $3,600 in electricity costs each year. “People tend to think that Auburn is too far north to benefit from solar power,” said Kevin Drayer, director of buildings and grounds at CCC. “In recent years, though, renewable-energy technology has improved and costs have come down. And testing has shown that these units can withstand a four-season climate” (story).

Rhode Island

Upgrades at Wakefield YMCA
At the South County YMCA in Wakefield, all interior and exterior lights at the site were converted to LED technology. In all, 75 interior linear fluorescent units were changed to LED fixtures; 43 interior “high bay” metal halide lights were converted, and 23 parking lot and exterior fixtures were replaced. Lighting occupancy controls were installed in selected areas, and a web-based Energy Management System took the place of existing standalone thermostat. The EMS allows the customer to monitor all of their HVAC equipment, enable CO2 based demand control ventilation, set temperature and schedules, and facilitate holiday turndowns.

The total project cost was $95,207 at no out-of-pocket cost to the facility. 70% of the cost was covered by the National Grid Direct Install program, while OER funds provided the difference. With estimated savings of 111,115 kWh and 954 therms, this upgrade will save the YMCA over $18,000 annually.

SuccessStories InstallLightingRhode Island School Saves Energy with Efficiency Upgrades

In 2012, a public school signed up for National Grid's lighting and controls energy efficiency program in order to implement several lighting energy efficiency upgrades. When installed, these lighting upgrades resulted in a 15,000,000 kWh of electricity energy savings for the school. The total cost of upgrades was $680,606 of which $225,681 was paid for through National Grid's energy efficiency incentives program. The remaining $454,925 were loaned to the school under the RGGI supported Large Business Revolving Loan Fund. The school is scheduled to pay back this loan using a zero percent On Bill Financing mechanism within a period of 24 months.


Vermont Rural Apartment House
The local housing agency was spending $16,500 per year for heat and hot water in this 5-unit, 130-year-old farmhouse with 40-year-old additions adding up to 6,000 SF. The house used nearly 3,500 gallons of oil for heat and 20,300 kWh electricity for hot water annually for the building. With technical assistance and cash incentives from Vermont Fuel Efficiency Partnership (VFEP), and participation of the Weatherization Assistance Program, virtually every wall, ceiling, and foundation surface was upgraded. The 73% oil boiler was swapped out for a 93% condensing propane unit. Windows and doors were replaced. All heating and hot water lines were insulated. Automatically controlled bathroom exhaust fans were added for ventilation. Estimated post-retrofit energy use is about 1,825 gallons of propane and 18,300 kWh electricity, an energy savings of 58%, and cost savings of $8,000 annually. VFEP assists owners of all types of affordable apartment housing statewide and is funded primarily though Efficiency Vermont, the state’s energy efficiency utility, using RGGI and Forward Capacity Market revenues.

SuccessStories CommunityRoxbury turns adversity into opportunity

In 2011, the historic Roxbury Community Hall suffered extensive damage in Tropical Storm Irene. Rather than simply restoring the hall to its original state, the town's energy committee decided to take advantage of the opportunity to rebuild, and renovate the building in a way that would ensure maximum energy efficiency and financial sustainability for years to come.

From air sealing and insulation to moisture remediation throughout, no corner of the building was left untouched. The most notable improvements came from separating the second floor, used only for storage, from the conditioned spaces below. Efficiency Vermont worked with the Roxbury Energy Committee and EnergySmart of Vermont, providing technical expertise and overseeing quality control throughout the rebuilding process.