Minnesota Multifamily Affordable Housing Energy Network

Purpose

The purpose of the Minnesota Multifamily Affordable Housing Energy Network (MMAHEN) is to increase energy efficiency and conservation in multifamily buildings (five units or more) in Minnesota by improving and expanding the use and equitable access of available resources. Under-resourced families have the most to gain from deeper investments in energy efficiency in affordable housing, since those families often spend up to five times more of their income on energy compared to the average household. Those multifamily residents are at the center of every policy and program that we work on.

Project Background

  • Funded by the Energy Foundation, Fresh Energy and Minnesota Housing are charged with connecting stakeholders from the energy efficiency and affordable multifamily housing sectors, and exploring strategies for increasing energy efficiency in multifamily housing.
  • A core team of convening partners helps to shape working group meetings and the direction of MMAHEN.
  • Since its first meeting in July 2014, MMAHEN has grown to consist of 45 members across 33 organizations. Activities of MMAHEN, which are identified by MMAHEN members, typically occur through phone/in-person meetings of specific “Action Area” groups, culminating in in-person meetings of the full MMAHEN network to review and celebrate achievements.

Action Areas

  1. Reliable Data Access and Benchmarking: works to promote greater access to building data related to energy efficiency and promote and encourage energy efficiency benchmarking
  2. Multifamily Efficiency in Greater Minnesota: works to expand energy efficiency program opportunities in Greater Minnesota by engaging with investor-owned, cooperative, and municipal utilities
  3. Energy Efficiency Financing: works to explore potential of existing financing mechanisms for multifamily housing in Minnesota and promote awareness of available financing tools
  4. Health-Energy Efficiency Nexus: works to explore opportunities for coordination between health, energy efficiency, and housing stakeholders

MMAHEN is also working to engage in conversations with renters in affordable multifamily housing.

Resources

MMAHEN Overview
MMAHEN Energy Efficiency in Affordable Housing Fact Sheet
A New Way to Talk About the Social Determinants of Health

Non-Energy Benefits of Energy Efficiency and Weatherization Programs in Multifamily Housing
MMAHEN Health Summit Presentation, September 7, 2016
MMAHEN Xcel Energy Benchmarking Data Portal Presentation
Best Practices for Utilities Deploying Data Tools for Multifamily Properties

Contact

Ben Passer
Senior Policy Associate, Energy Performance
Fresh Energy
passer@fresh-energy.org