Here we are, already in the second month of the New Year. If you were impacted by the tornadoes last year in western and central Massachusetts, you know that months later, residents of Monson, Springfield and surrounding towns are still working to restore their homes and get their lives back to normal. You’re probably relieved to turn the calendar page, make a fresh start and plan for the year ahead.
The staff at the Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources and Massachusetts Clean Energy Center want to help you make 2012 a better year than last, by helping you rebuild – and rebuild keeping energy efficiency and renewable energy in mind.
The ReBuild Western Massachusetts program offers rebates, grants and 0 percent interest loans for energy efficiency improvements and solar projects as you repair or rebuild your homes. If you plan to install windows, doors or a new heating system this year, understand that there are a number of available incentives to reduce your costs. Home and business owners as well as municipalities in the affected areas are eligible for up to $5,000 rebates and 0 percent interest loans for up to $100,000. The available incentives in the ReBuild program in conjunction with many incentives offered by local utilities may make your efficient home improvements cost less than a non-efficient measure. Check out the video below to learn more.
By installing good insulation, ENERGY STAR® qualified windows and doors, or a high efficiency heating system, you’ll improve your comfort every day while saving money on your monthly electrical bills.
If you are installing a new water heater, keep in mind that a solar water heating system can provide up to 75 percent of your annual hot water usage and can greatly reduce bills from expensive heating fuels like oil, electricity and propane.
Installing a new roof? This could be a great time to incorporate a solar electric system to lower your monthly electric bills. With the additional rebate available in the recovery zones, almost 75 percent of the system is covered and the system can actually pay for itself in the first 2-3 years!
Remember – energy improvements are the only household improvements that actually pay you back. And when you are ready to sell the house, a lower utility bill can help sell the house faster. Here’s to a new and improved year!
Toward Zero Net Energy posted on Apr 10
In late February I had the opportunity to attend the Toward Zero Net Energy (TZNE) Retrofit Program “Charrette” ‒ a collaborative session in which a group of designers drafts a solution to a design problem ‒ at Holyoke Community College (HCC). The purpose of this charrette …Continue Reading Toward Zero Net Energy
Leadership Matters – Images from 7th Green Schools Summit posted on Apr 7
At the 7th Annual Massachusetts Green Schools Summit, students, teachers, legislators and energy officials came together to embrace leadership roles within their communities. DOER Commissioner Mark Sylvia emphasized that clean energy and climate literacy among the current generation of students will be crucial for Massachusetts in the future. “Set the tone, lead the way in the classroom, at home, in the community and for our future.”
Clean Energy Game posted on Apr 3
Marketers are recognizing “gamification” as a way to motivate and engage people. Can games help engage the public about clean energy through content delivery, education, a sense of community, ways to encourage behaviors?