NES Introduces Community Power Challenge

Nashville Electric Service (NES), one of the 12 largest public electric utilities in the nation, is launching an energy assistance pilot program called Community Power Challenge for low-income, multifamily property owners, management, staff and residents. This initiative is in partnership with the Office of Mayor David Briley and the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA).

Running through October 2019, the pilot program offers free energy education and engagement specifically tailored to multifamily property owners, management, staff, and the residents who live there, so they can become energy efficient as a community.

“After launching the Home Energy Uplift program for low-income homeowners, we saw that there remained a need for customers in multifamily homes to have access to a similar energy assistance program,” said Decosta Jenkins, NES president and CEO. “Our intention is to address the needs of all our customers, which is why we are excited to educate those in low-income, multifamily homes on energy efficiency through a variety of free programs that we hope will make a difference in more communities.”

“By lowering the utility bills of multifamily residents through energy-efficiency measures, we can preserve housing affordability, enabling our most vulnerable citizens to remain in their homes and neighborhoods as Nashville grows,” said Mayor David Briley. “Providing energy-savings education through the Community Power Challenge is a step in the right direction for our affordable housing goals and for lowering Nashville’s carbon emissions.”

The goal of the Community Power Challenge is to develop a sustainable energy education program for low-income, multifamily customers. Activities in the pilot program will include:

  • A site assessment to better understand the makeup of each customer’s property and to determine where energy can be saved
  • Benchmarking current energy usage through billing data
  • Monthly coaching, personalized action plans, and workshops for property management and staff
  • Expert guidance on system replacement (if necessary)
  • Energy fairs, monthly education, and rewards for energy savings for residents and properties alike
  • Tracking and evaluation to document improvements and possible energy savings

“TVA is excited to explore ways to help the multifamily communities through this collaborative approach,” said Cindy Herron, TVA vice president, EnergyRight Solutions. “This program supports our mission of service and our desire to work with our partners to provide energy advice to low-income residents.”

TVA and NES are conducting winter energy workshops this month for the staff and residents in the participating communities.

Customers participating in this pilot will be the first to help NES and TVA shape a program it hopes will become a model for more properties in Nashville and across the Tennessee Valley region. NES and TVA hope to offer these new options to other multifamily communities in the future.