Low-Income Decarbonization Pilot

In the Fall of 2019, the DC chapter of the Sierra Club approached the Department of Energy and Environment and the DCSEU to discuss how we could study “decarbonizing” residential buildings in the District by eliminating oil or natural gas systems and appliances.

In October 2019, the DCSEU brought together representatives from DOEE, the Sierra Club, and the contracting community to discuss the benefits and challenges we might face in developing a program to “decarbonize” single-family homes in the District. Based on the feedback from this roundtable, the DCSEU began designing a pilot program, the Low-Income Decarbonization Pilot. In partnership with DOEE, the DCSEU will seek to reduce the carbon emissions of approximately 15 income-qualified single-family homes by incorporating solar PV systems through the Solar for All program while also replacing natural gas or oil systems with electric systems in each home.

Work to be Completed in Each Home

The work performed on each home will be at no cost to the resident and could include:

  1. Replacement of natural gas or fuel oil heating systems with electric air-source heat pumps
  2. Pre- and post-project comprehensive home energy audits
  3. Weatherization and airsealing of the home
  4. Installation of LED lighting and smart thermostat
  5. If funding is available, replacement of other fossil-fuel burning systems with electric systems, including:
    • Hot water heater
    • Gas stove/range/oven
    • Gas-powered clothes dryer
  6. Installation of solar onsite or community solar credits through the Solar for All program

Pilot Program Requirements

Residents must meet the following requirements of the pilot program:

  1. Meet income qualifications
  2. Provide needed access to your home to the Implementation Contractor, Home Energy Auditor, DCRA inspector and other entities that may be needed to safely install and inspect equipment
  3. Be willing to replace fossil fuel burning systems/appliances with electric systems/appliances


For DC residents interested in participating or who want additional information, please contact the DCSEU at 202-479-2222 or decarbonizationprogram@dcseu.com. Please keep in mind that the pilot is limited to approximately 15 homes.