For businessman Matt Eye, it’s about connecting with people.
His company, M.B. Eye Electrical of Charlottetown, operates under the slogan: “Innovative Electrical Solutions”.
Thanks to Island programs to help lower-income residents save money on their energy bills, Eye has lots of chances to connect with customers.
“If I were just a regular electrician wiring houses, putting in lights, plugs and oil furnace thermostats, I don’t feel like I would be where I am today,” he said. “I like a challenge. I get bored pretty easily.”
The P.E.I. government set up a new Winter Warming program in its 2017 energy plan to cover the costs of modest energy efficiency upgrades to homes or apartments owned or rented by qualifying islanders.
Under this program, certified tradespersons like Eye seal up homes with caulking and install energy-efficient products such as programmable thermostats and LED bulbs.
“I think the rebate and incentive programs for low-income households are huge. Here in P.E.I. there are a lot of people unemployed, there are a lot of people struggling. I have three kids myself, so I know what it takes to run a household,” said Eye, whose firm has used EfficiencyPEI rebates on heat pump installations for low-income households, in addition to providing solar energy and energy efficiency consulting.
“For the government to step up and help out in these situations is fantastic, because if someone is struggling to pay an oil bill, they can’t afford a ten thousand dollar retrofit to upgrade their system one hundred percent, but something like a heat pump gives them a great opportunity to save substantially with what they have,” he added.
Climate is a top-of-mind issue for many Canadians and energy efficiency is estimated by the International Energy Agency (IEA) to be 40 per cent of the solution to meeting the global Paris targets.
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