Empower Chattanooga is more than an energy efficiency program. We want to consider how energy use and affordability of utilities affect quality of life in Chattanooga, neighborhood-by-neighborhood.
Empower Chattanooga is a new approach to considering and coordinating the delivery of a range of services based on grassroots feedback, real-time geospatial analysis, and the ongoing coordination of public and private resources. Together with residents, our partner organizations want to advance environmental, economic, and social sustainability.
green|spaces, EPB, the City of Chattanooga, the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, and more than 30 other partnering organizations are coordinating our efforts to reduce per-capita energy use and improve quality of life. But to do that, it is important to engage the residents and leaders in each neighborhood to learn what challenges their neighborhood faces, and what they love and value about their neighborhood. We can then consider how best to deliver energy efficiency and other services that can address specific challenges and improve quality of life.
By reducing the utility bills for homeowners, they will have additional expendable income to be able to meet the other needs of their families. This could be spending the money on paying down debts, buying healthier food, purchasing medicine, or buying other necessities. Every dollar saved through energy efficiency is a dollar that can go back into a neighborhood.
But it’s more than just efficiency...
it’s about increasing quality of life. High energy consumption can be a symptom of more wide-spread challenges to quality of life. We identified three areas where average energy usage was very high and will focus our efforts on these communities during the first phase:
This first phase of Empower consists of that gathering information from our first focus neighborhoods. We commissioned the Ochs Center to help set up initial surveys and focus groups to inform our approach. Now we are taking the next step by establishing advisory groups in our focus neighborhoods to provide more real-time dialogue between our partner agencies and the residents and community leaders that we will be serving.
We Need Your Help...
Community Meetings and Advisory Groups (Neighborhood Engagement)
If you live in East Lake, Highland Park, or East Chattanooga (or any of the smaller neighborhoods within those larger communities) please come to our community meetings and consider serving on an advisory group. If you work in a school, church, or other institution in any of our focus areas and would like to be part of Empower, please also come to the community meetings