The Georgetown University Energy Prize competition was created to spur communities nationwide to improve their energy efficiency. Athens County Commissioners decided to join the competition in 2014, and “UpGrade Athens County” became 1 of 50 semifinalists to compete from 2015-2016 in a two-year competition to reduce their utility-supplied energy consumption. The winner will take home a $5 million grand prize.
With the two-year competition over, Upgrade is still waiting to hear whether Athens County was selected to be a finalist in the competition. The finalists will be announced October 2017.
If UpGrade Ohio makes it as a finalist, it must submit its plans on how Athens County would use the $5 million in its energy efficiency efforts. Upgrade Athens County is the lead project of Upgrade Ohio, which works to connect people with local resources on how to reduce energy use and access renewable energy resources.