Earth Hour Update: NEST fighting energy poverty with thermostat initiative


Nest Labs, Inc. architect of the thoughtful home, announced an initiative in January to help tack energy poverty.

Together with government, non-profit and utility partners, Nest is increasing access to energy-saving devices in low and moderate income households by providing 1 million Nest Thermostats to income-qualified programs.

”Since 2011, we have helped millions of customers across the world save over 15 billion kWh of energy — the equivalent of providing electricity to all the homes in New York State for over 100 days,” said Matt Rogers, co-founder and chief product officer at Nest.

Currently more than 35 million American households struggle with energy affordability, meaning 1 out of every 4 families often face difficult trade-offs between paying for energy, housing, food or healthcare.

Also only 22% of those eligible receive relief through the federal Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program.

“The need for income-qualified energy savings programs is well documented, and government assistance initiatives consistently receive broad support,” said Ray Judy of the National Association of State Community Service Programs.

The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy reports that low-income families living in major metropolitan areas experience a median energy burden of 7.2%, compared to 2.3% of higher-income households in those areas. Smart thermostats can help address this disparity, but the upfront cost of purchasing a device is still out of reach for many.

“This is based on independent studies that show an average of 10% to 12% savings in heating and 15% in cooling in the U.S. We’re excited to make our products available to a whole new set of customers with this newest effort, said Matt Rogers”.

NEST continues to partner with organisations across the United States.

Partners will receive special pricing on devices to install the Nest Thermostat E in homes of income-qualified customers who are eligible to receive the device at little or no cost.