SCI FI Channel named the winner of its first-ever Eureka $mart House Energy Efficiency Challenge, a contest created to increase awareness of energy, during last night's season finale of the hit cable channel's series Eureka. Cathy Clites of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, will receive a home energy makeover worth $25,000.
"I'm a fan of Eureka," said Cathy Clites, winner of SCI FI Channel's Eureka $mart House Energy Efficiency Challenge. "It's really important for me to play my part in helping combat climate change, so I know I've done everything I can to protect my grandchildren's future."
Cathy's prize includes an overall energy audit to identify energy problems; ENERGY STAR-labeled kitchen appliances; energy-efficient compact fluorescent lighting; sealing of all air leaks and appropriate insulation; laptop computer and energy-efficient electronics and a programmable thermostat, low-flow shower head, faucet aerators, ventilating fan, updated wiring of the home; and much more.
"The Eureka $mart House Energy Efficiency Challenge demonstrates how effectively SCI FI Channel utilized Eureka's characters and storylines to educate millions of Americans about critical energy issues and the simple steps each of us can take to really begin to make a difference," said Dave Howe, Executive Vice President and General Manager, SCI FI Channel. "We are thrilled with how many people were inspired by our multi-media public affairs campaign and with Cathy's commitment to share energy-efficiency information with her community."
A panel of judges from the Alliance to Save Energy, a leading energy-efficiency organization; Edison Electric Institute (EEI), the association of US shareholder-owned electric companies, international affiliates, and industry associates worldwide; and SCI FI Channel's public affairs initiative, Visions For Tomorrow; selected Cathy as the winner of the home energy-efficiency makeover from among close to 9,000 entries. The makeover will be completed in October, which is National Energy Awareness Month. Other campaign partners include the US Department of Energy, Whirlpool Corporation, the Consumer Electronics Association, OSRAM Sylvania, the American Gas Association, The Dow Chemical Company, CMC Energy Services, and the Air-Conditioning and Refrigeration Institute.
Cathy lives in a one-story, four-bedroom, two-bathroom home in a subdivision of Baton Rouge. A total of nine people live in her home including her disabled war veteran husband, Charlie; her daughter Sheri, her husband Nate and their four children, ages 2, 3 ½, 9 and 10; and Nate's 19-year old hearing-impaired son. Yet the family still opened their doors to Katrina victims who escaped to Baton Rouge.
"Home energy costs are a major concern for many Americans, and needless to say, Cathy's three-generation household living on VA and Social Security disability benefits is on a tight budget. By making simple changes to their home and using smart energy practices, the Clites family will realize significant reductions in their home energy bills," said Alliance to Save Energy President Kateri Callahan. "Once the home energy-efficiency makeover is complete, the Clites family can expect to save from 10 to 30 percent a year on energy costs."
"Energy efficiency is smart," said EEI President Tom Kuhn. "It benefits the customer, the power company, and the environment. On behalf of the nation's electric companies, we hope that the Eureka $mart House Energy-Efficiency Challenge will inspire more people to think about what they can do to make their own home more energy efficient."
Eureka is SCI FI's most-watched original series starring Colin Ferguson, Salli Richardson, Joe Morton, Ed Quinn and Jordan Hinson. Nestled in the Pacific Northwest, Eureka is a small town with big secrets. Shrouded in secrecy, the picturesque hamlet is actually a community of geniuses assembled by the government to conduct top-secret research. What they've unwittingly created is a place where anything imaginable can happen… and does.