Published on: Thursday, October 1, 2015 Takoma Park Newsletter

Small business kilowatt smackdown!

With the support of the City of Takoma Park, the Green Impact Campaign (GIC) and Nextility, two DC-based energy organizations, are coordinating a community initiative to help Takoma Park small businesses save money on energy while reducing their environmental impact.

The effort — Kilowatt Smackdown — will include a community-wide competition between student groups from local universities and colleges to complete free energy assessments for businesses from Oct. 3 to Nov. 18. The outcome will be custom, actionable plans to save money and energy for each business.

During the remainder of the year, Kilowatt Smackdown partners will help small businesses with resources to complete these low- to no-cost recommendations, aid businesses in choosing a lower-cost, green energy supplier, and determine if their buildings are suitable for free solar energy systems. Businesses will also be connected to state and local rebate programs and to the Montgomery County Green Business Certification program for further assistance and help for deeper energy savings.

Green Impact Campaign and Nextility will train students to conduct energy assessments using their various assessment tools.

Student prizes

The top three students that complete the most energy assessments during the competition period will be awarded the following scholarships from the City of Takoma Park:

  • 1st place – $3,000
  • 2nd place – $1,500
  • 3rd place – $500

Top performing students will be given the opportunity for an informational interview or paid internship at the following organizations:

  • City of Takoma Park – Sustainability Programs (2-paid winter internship positions)
  • Nextility (informational interview)
  • AtSite (informational interview)
  • Community Power Network (informational interview)

Throughout the competition, students will be able to win small and large weekly “PowerUp Prizes” provided by sponsoring local businesses, which may include: gift cards to local restaurants, “green” resume writing workshop presented by 20 minute resume, tickets to sporting and music events and more!

To participate as a student competitor or to sign your small business up for the free energy assessment and help a local student, go to http://greenimpactcampaign. org/kilowattsmackdown/ or contact City Sustainability Manager Gina Mathias at

This article appeared in the October 2015 edition of the Takoma Park Newsletter. The Takoma Park Newsletter is available for download here.