Press Release

For immediate release
December 17 2012

Maryland Energy Efficient Experts Urge Homeowners and Commercial Property Managers to Explore Cost Saving Measures and Available Cash Incentives

The average US household is expected to spend a massive 21% of its total after-tax income on energy in 2012[1]. Workplaces fare little better with a 6.4% hike in energy bills recorded in August and a further 4.7% jump on file for September[2]. Both businesses and homeowners worried about their soaring energy bills are being urged to consider a series of energy efficiency measures designed to get their expenditure under control ahead of expected additional increases in 2013.

The energy experts at Shepherd Energy (a division of Shepherd Design and Construction) provide both commercial and residential energy efficiency services with savings of as much as 25%. Options include energy audits and weatherization or retrofitting.

As an approved contractor for Pepco and BGE Home Performance with ENERGY STAR as well as the BeSmart program, Shepherd Energy can help homeowners eager to optimize their energy efficiency to access a range of cost saving rebates up to $4,250 (via BeSmart), $3,150 (via BGE) and $2,200 (via Pepco). Homeowners participating in the Be SMART Home Program with Shepherd Energy can expect to reduce their energy consumption by as much as a quarter. The initiative, from the Department of Housing and Community Development, approves Shepherd Energy to carry out a range of bill-busting measures around the home such as installing more energy efficient heating and cooling systems, adding insulation to attics, floors and walls, eliminating drafts from windows and doors and introducing less energy-hungry appliances like modern refrigerators. Work carried out by Shepherd Energy under the BGE and Pepco emblems sees the whole house’s energy use considered and then improved, leaving residents with a notably more comfortable home. Typical benefits include fewer draughty rooms, better ventilation and heating control and more consistent temperatures throughout.

Approved by Pepco to perform commercial work, Shepherd Energy can also cut the cost of energy bills and reduce the budget needed to implement efficiency measures in commercial buildings. With a focus on reducing environmental impact, operational and maintenance budgets, it can pinpoint problem areas and identify cost-saving measures, install more energy efficient equipment and identify opportunities to improve the building’s environmental impact and comfort levels. Incentives available via Shepherd Energy and Pepco include Energy Saving Program rebates and cash towards the installation cost of more energy efficient heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems.

Crystal Faison, President of Shepherd Energy’s parent company, Shepherd Design & Construction said, “Energy audits, retrofit and weatherization for both residential and commercial buildings are pocket-friendly ways to make a big difference, both to comfort, the environment and the bottom line. Saving significantly on energy expenditure is now not a luxury but a necessity for anyone in charge of a household or business budget. With the cost of energy expected to continue to rise at home and at work by at least 1.3% in 2013[3], now is the time to take action and reclaim some of the money being wasted on unnecessarily high electricity and gas consumption.

One of the easiest ways to determine probable savings in either a home or a commercial space is via Shepherd Energy’s commercial energy audit. Recognized as the first step in reducing utility bills, an energy audit is carried out by a certified Auditor and uses a series of diagnostic tools and tests to identify problem areas such as where hot and cold air escapes the building, where higher amounts of energy consumption are centered and how efficient heating and ventilation systems are.

Thanks to a growing awareness of possible savings and the availability of rebates, Shepherd Energy’s retrofitting service is also hugely popular and a powerful weapon in the fight against high energy costs. It calculates energy savings of around 5-15% following retrofitting in commercial spaces and savings of around 35% on energy consumption after retrofitting in residential spaces[4]. Also known as weatherization, retrofitting takes a holistic approach to energy improvements, helping to safeguard against future problems. It is proven to deliver comprehensive cost and environmental benefits with the US Department of Energy estimating that for every $1 invested in weatherization, the process returns $2.51 in benefits, including $1.80 in savings on energy bills.

In order to maximize savings as a result of retrofitting, Shepherd Energy will assess each building individually before devising a comprehensive strategy of efficiency upgrades. In the home, retrofitting may mean replacing furnaces and burners, insulating walls and attics or retrofitting lighting solutions. In workplaces, retrofitting can include the tuning or replacement of entire systems from Heating, Ventilation, and air conditioning through to lighting fixtures and controls.

In addition to the long-term savings, weatherization also gives the peace of mind that comes from knowing that the building is properly ventilated and that combustion appliances, like furnaces, are running properly. Thanks to its approved contractor status on the Pepco Combined Heat and Power Program, Shepherd Energy can help clients to access cash incentives for projects that meet the EmPOWER Maryland energy saving goals during the weatherization process.

To find out more about all available Shepherd Energy services and to learn more about its program accreditations including how to access financial assistance for energy efficiency projects, please visit http://www.shepherdenergy.com/

About Shepherd Energy: Based in Bowie, Maryland, Shepherd Energy is part of Shepherd Design and Construction. Founded on the belief that a home or business that is energy efficient is more affordable and comfortable, Shepherd Energy consolidates the firm’s energy saving know how in a dedicated center of operations. Shepherd Energy professionals are certified by the nationally renowned Building Performance Institute (BPI) as energy auditors and building envelope specialists. It is an approved contractor for Pepco and BGE Home Performance with ENERGY STAR as well as Maryland’s Be Smart program. Shepherd Energy is also an approved CHP and trade alley for the Pepco commercial program.

Note to Editors: Issued by Shepherd Design and Construction. For more information please contact Crystal Faison, Tel: (0)301.686.8466, email: cfaison@sdc-llc.net

[1] Source: Energy Cost Impacts on American Families 2001-2012 (http://www.americaspower.org/sites/default/files/Energy_Cost_Impacts_2012_FINAL.pdf)
[2] Source: The Producer Price Index (http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10000872396390444799904578052241650230264.html)
[3] Source: US Energy Information Administration (http://www.eia.gov/forecasts/steo/report/electricity.cfm)
[4] US Department of Energy: Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy