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Participants to Prove a High-Efficiency Home Is Achievable with Current Technology

WHAT: The 2015 Zero Energy Challenge is a design and build competition for single and multi-family homes built in Connecticut that will complete construction by December 1, 2015. Participants compete for cash prizes, while gaining exposure to media and various forms of technical assistance provided by the challenge sponsors and partners. Completed homes are assigned a performance score based on the presence of energy-efficient features that curb overall energy use, through the use of the Home Energy Rating System (HERS). The home's HERS index, coupled with other factors including the cost effectiveness of the project and the home's total estimated energy use are utilized to determine the winners.

The 2015 CT Zero Energy Challenge (ZEC) builds off the ongoing success of the previous 2010-2014 challenges. Participating homes will continue to demonstrate that building a super high efficiency(near zero energy) home is achievable today, while also representing the technologies and techniques it takes to get there. The participants receive technical assistance and financial incentives from the utility and HERS Rating Professional and will be eligible for prizes in the following categories:

  • Overall Winner: $10,000
  • Lowest overall HERS index: $5,000
  • Lowest HERS index before renewable technologies: $5,000
  • Most affordable project (cost / sq. ft.): $5,000
  • Lowest projected net annual operating cost: $5,000

For more information and a list of official qualifications and requirements, please visit

WHEN: An initial submission including a project summary, description of the project team, and an initial energy modeling file must be received by applicable utility representative listed below no later than June 1, 2015.  Home must complete construction by December 1, 2015.

WHERE: Click here to download the application form. Send your completed application to the following address as it pertains to your residential electric service territory: 

The United Illuminating Company

180 Marsh Hill Road, M/S AD-2A, Orange, CT 06477

Contact: Jenn Parsons 


Phone: (203) 499-5935

Fax: (203) 499-2800


107 Selden Street, Berlin CT 06037

Contact: Enoch Lenge


Phone: (860) 665-5369

Fax: (860) 665-3030

CONTACT:  Jordana George, on behalf of UI/Energize Connecticut, 203.393.1101 x166, 

About Energize Connecticut

Energize Connecticut helps you save money and use clean energy. It is an initiative of the Energy Efficiency Fund, the Connecticut Green Bank, the State, and your local electric and gas utilities, with funding from a charge on customer energy bills. Information on energy-saving programs can be found at or by calling 1.877.WISE.USE.