GEFA strives to increase the capacity and quality of Georgia’s water supply, coordinate the protection and preservation of Georgia’s land resources, and promote conservation and advancement of Georgia’s energy resources. GEFA’s accomplishments challenge the agency to continue building upon this success through its commitment to protecting Georgia’s natural resources and supporting economic development.
Increasing the capacity and improving the health of Georgia’s Water Resources:
Local governments using GEFA to finance water and sewer projects saved more than $16.8 million in interest costs over the life of an average 20-year loan in FY2012.
In December 2011, Gov. Nathan Deal approved the final report of the Water Supply Task Force that outlines recommendations for the Governor's Water Supply Program
GEFA and the Georgia Department of Community Affairs held workshops to assist local communities seeking funding through the Governor's Water Supply Program.
GEFA received 15 applications from communities seeking funding for their water supply projects.
The Water Resources Division partnered with CH2M Hill and Jacobs Engineering to complete a study on the ability of 35 metro Atlanta water systems to interconnect with adjacent systems during emergencies, as directed by the 2010 Water System Interconnection, Redundancy and Reliability Act.
GEFA designated $1 million to create the Water Loss Technical Assistance Program for small water systems. Georgia communities with water systems serving between 3,000 and 10,000 individuals were eligible for this program. More than 100 communities throughout the state are participating.
The GEFA board of directors approved record-low interest rates
for loans. The Georgia Fund and the Reservoir and Water Supply Fund interest rates were lowered to 2.82 percent. The Clean Water State Revolving Fund (SRF) and Drinking Water SRF interest rates were lowered to 1.82 percent. Projects that conserve water receive an additional 1 percent reduction.
Protecting Georgia’s Land Resources:
- House Bill 386 standardized eligible conservation donations while reducing the potential for inappropriate use.
- The Georgia Land Conservation Program facilitated the donation of five conservation easements, protecting more than 2,500 acres of land.
- Eighty-eight tax credits were issued for 35,756 acres of perpetually-protected land.
- The Fuel Storage Tank Program replaced underground storage tank components at two locations on Sapelo Island, protecting Georgia's environmentally-rich Barrier Islands.
- During FY2012, GEFA helped its agency partners pass 72 fuel storage tank site compliance inspections.
- 338 underground fuel storage tanks were registered in FY2012.
- The GEFA board of directors lowered interest rates for land conservation projects to 1.32, a record low for the program.
Conserving and Advancing Georgia’s Energy Resources:
- GEFA's energy initiatives in FY2012 resulted in 40 million square-feet of building retrofits that conserve energy and money, 29 solar photovoltaic (PV) projects with 1.6 megawatts (MW) of installed capacity, and 716 energy audits in facilities around the state that identified 39 million kilowatt (KW) hours of potential energy-savings.
- Ninety-five American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) projects under the State Energy Program and the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant program were completed.
- Energy performance contracting allows the state to finance building improvements designed to lower energy consumption. GEFA launched the program by selecting the energy service companies that are eligible to compete for future energy performance contracting solicitations by the state.
- Projects funded through the state retrofit program were measured and verified, 101 projects throughout Georgia providing $9.8 million in energy savings costs and 722,084 million British Thermal Units (BTUs) in energy savings.
- The Weatherization Assistance Program weatherized 5,381 homes in Georgia, saving 164,120 million BTUs in energy in FY2012.
- Gov. Nathan Deal proclaimed October 30, 2011, as Weatherization Day in Georgia to encourage state residents to make energy-efficient improvements.
- The Georgia Energy Challenge, since 2010, has registered 5,532 residents, businesses, schools and nonprofit organizations committed to lowering energy use by 15 percent, pledging $4.8 million in savings.
- The Energy Resources Division updated the State Energy Strategy for Georgia. The report includes a detailed profile of energy generation and consumption, and information on initiatives and programs designed to help secure the state's energy future.
For more information, view GEFA's annual report here.
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