A workshop scheduled for 6 to 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 14, at Ashland Public Library will give homeowners and businesses an opportunity to purchase a discounted ductless heat pump system through Energize Rogue, a group-purchase campaign that reduces the regular price of a ductless system, streamlines the installation process for customers, and provides guidance on incentives and financing.

Ductless heat pumps are efficient zonal heating and cooling systems that have at least one head unit indoors, usually placed high on the wall, a compressor located outside, and a refrigerant line connecting the two. The systems use 25-50 percent less energy than traditional electric heating systems, heat spaces more evenly, and provide air conditioning in summer.

In addition to savings received through the Energize Rogue discount, Ashland municipal utility customers may qualify to receive $500-$2,000 in cash rebates when upgrading to a ductless heat pump. Some homes may also be eligible for residential energy tax credits that area available through the State of Oregon.

Energize Rogue is a community-driven campaign that utilizes two volunteer committees, one to conduct outreach, and another to choose an installation contractor through a competitive bidding process. Earlier this year, a team of five area residents reviewed contract proposals, interviewed potential partners, and selected locally-owned Allied Comfort Pro as the installation partner for the campaign. The ductless systems available through the group purchase are manufactured by Mitsubishi and are regarded in the industry for their superior quality.

At the free community workshop, participants will learn more about the group purchase program, hear from installation professionals and program partners, and have an opportunity to ask questions. A representative from Ashland Conservation Division will provide information about city-sponsored incentives and energy efficiency programs.

The nonprofit groups Rogue Climate and Northwest SEED partnered to host Energize Rogue in Jackson and Josephine counties. The project is funded by a USDA Rural Business Development Grant to advance energy efficiency and boost job growth in rural communities.

The workshop is free and open to the public. Attendees should register in advance online at www.energizerogue.org. For more information, contact Northwest SEED project coordinator Jill Eikenhorst at 541-236-5027 or jill@nwseed.org.