This commentary originally appeared on our EDF Voices Blog.
Those of us from rural areas know the special beauty of natural landscapes – and we know the challenges of living in sparsely-populated regions. Rural areas have higher rates of poverty and economic disparity, lower per capita income and disproportionate elderly and veteran populations when compared to more urban areas.
Rural homes and commercial buildings tend to be older and less energy-efficient, and more than half of all manufactured homes are located in rural communities. Many homes lack adequate insulation, weather stripping around windows and other basic improvements that reduce energy use and add dollars to household budgets.
Additionally, rural communities account for over 70% of our country’s land mass, about 12% of total electric utility customers, and are crucial to advancing national energy and economic goals. These often overlooked and underserved rural areas are ready for innovative public and private partnerships that promote the transition to a clean, low-carbon economy and wise energy choices. Read More