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CHPC Participates in 2006 Virginia Weatherization Interchange

An exchange of knowledge and ideas to make weatherization work across Virginia.

This has always been the goal of the Virginia Weatherization Interchange. However, this year’s event was the first of its kind to combine administrative workshops and crew competitions to create a true exchange of best practices to weatherize Virginia’s homes.

Sponsored by the Association of Energy Conservation Professionals (AECP) and the Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD), the Interchange brought together over 150 staff from vendors, weatherization crews and local, state and federal agencies to Blacksburg, VA, September 18-21.

The week was filled with workshops and trainings, but perhaps the most exciting part of the Interchange was the two full days of crew competitions. More than 50 crews competed in several competitions that tested their application of energy conservation techniques and efficiency measures in a typical household.

Bill Beachy, Community Housing Partners’ (CHPC) VP of Energy Services, said the staff who work everyday to increase residential conservation are the real winners of the competition.

“The men and women from all the local weatherization providers were reminded of their contributions to enable low- to moderate-wealth individuals and families to remain in their homes,” Beachy said. “It is a testament to their impact in creating the largest residential energy conservation program in the country.”

All 22 members of CHPC’s Energy Services’ department attended and participated in the Interchange. Not only did they compete and take away trophies, but they were also instrumental in building props for the crew competitions, transporting attendees and teaching administrative workshops.

Billy Weitzenfeld, Executive Director of AECP, said, “In short, we could not have put the event on without CHPC’s willingness to provide assistance whenever necessary.”

The last crew competition for Virginia’s Weatherization network was in 1987. Based on the success of this year’s event, organizers have decided to hold another similar Interchange in 2008.