News release - Home Upgrades Program celebrates one year of addressing energy poverty in Edmonton




Home Upgrades Program celebrates one year of addressing energy poverty in Edmonton

EDMONTON, June 26, 2024  - Alberta Ecotrust Foundation and Kambo Energy Group, with the support of the City of Edmonton and other funders, provide support for lower-income homeowners in Edmonton to reduce their energy costs through the Home Upgrades Program. The program is celebrating the one-year anniversary of its launch in Edmonton. 

The Home Upgrades Program tackles energy affordability by providing free energy efficiency education and home upgrades for eligible lower-income households. Upgrades improve the efficiency, comfort, and safety of participants’ homes, and reduce residential greenhouse gas emissions. Support is provided based on each household’s unique needs and it may include high-efficiency furnaces, air sealing, and insulation upgrades. 

Since launching in the summer of 2023, the program has upgraded 75 homes in Edmonton. Homeowners will benefit from energy savings and reduced energy bills, paired with an estimated average of 2.0 tCO2e greenhouse gas reductions per home per year. 

In Canada, families who spend more than six per cent of their after-tax income on energy bills experience energy poverty. It is estimated that 50,000 households in Edmonton experience energy poverty (CUSP, 2019). 

The Home Upgrades Program is the first and only program of its kind in Alberta. It is offered by Alberta Ecotrust Foundation and Kambo Energy Group with support from major funding and program partners: the City of Edmonton and the City of Calgary. Further financial support has been provided by Alberta Ecotrust’s Climate Innovation Fund, Alberta Real Estate Foundation, McConnell Foundation and Suncor Energy Foundation, among others. 

"The City of Edmonton is proud to be a major supporter of the Home Upgrade Program because affordability is a priority for Edmontonians," said Mayor Amarjeet Sohi. "Eliminating energy poverty by making homes more energy efficient is a key goal of Edmonton’s Community Energy Transition Strategy, and this initiative allows us to reduce harmful carbon emissions while also enhancing the quality of life for participants."

“The Home Upgrades Program is an excellent example of how we can improve affordability for households while mitigating climate change,” says Mike Mellross, Vice President at Alberta Ecotrust Foundation. “We know there is a great need across the province for a collaborative program of this nature and are looking for opportunities to scale this work to impact more homes with additional funding support.” 

“The Home Upgrades Program is making a difference for Albertans struggling to make ends meet. Our program takes a community-focused approach and is uniquely designed to meet participants where they are,” explains Yasmin Abraham, President and Co-Founder of Kambo Energy Group. “Participants have told us they feel they’ve “won the lottery” or that it’s “too good to be true” and that without the program, the installation of costly upgrades would have been out of reach. We’ve also heard from many participants that they worried about aging furnaces and hot water tanks failing, or that they felt uncomfortable inside their homes. They now feel more comfortable and relieved knowing their appliances won’t fail during a cold snap.” 

The program received funding to upgrade 110 lower-income households in Edmonton and is currently fully subscribed. With additional funding, the program can be scaled up to help more households. For more information or to express interest in supporting the program, visit


About Alberta Ecotrust Foundation and the Climate Innovation Fund
Alberta Ecotrust Foundation is a charity working to create a healthier environment for all Albertans. As a founding member of the Low Carbon Cities Canada (LC3) network, it received an endowment from the federal government to create the Climate Innovation Fund. The Fund provides a suite of programs to complement and advance the climate leadership work undertaken by the Cities of Calgary and Edmonton.

LC3 is implemented in partnership among seven local centres and the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM). LC3 is part of a Government of Canada investment to accelerate urban climate solutions and help achieve Canada’s climate goal of net-zero by 2050.

About Kambo Energy Group

Kambo Energy Group is a minority-owned and run social enterprise committed to improving home comfort, safety, and energy efficiency in underrepresented communities. Founded in 2009, Kambo was created in response to a lack of diverse participation in utility and government retrofit programming from households with low-to-moderate incomes, diverse multicultural communities, Indigenous communities, and other harder-to-reach groups. Kambo delivers three programs: Empower Me, Community Power, and the Home Upgrades Program. 

Media contacts:
Andrea Soler
Communications Director, Alberta Ecotrust Foundation | 780.966.8176

Emma Gammans
Director of Communications and Marketing, Kambo Energy Group |403.478.4543