Remember to set your clocks back one hour this Saturday night, November 3, for the end of Daylight Savings Time. You’ll get an extra hour of sleep and you’ll be on the right time schedule the next day. If you don’t need the extra sleep, use the extra hour to test your home’s smoke detectors and change out old batteries. As winter approaches, it is also a great time to replace burned-out light bulbs with energy-efficient CFL light bulbs.
Regular light bulbs (incandescent) and batteries such as AA, AAA, C, 9-volt and D can be disposed of in Seattle’s curbside garbage cans as they are not considered hazardous. ”CFL” stands for compact fluorescent lights, and because CFLs contain small amounts of mercury, they must be recycled at a local collection site and not thrown in the trash. To encourage recycling of CFLs, Seattle City Light and Seattle Public Utilities are hosting Recycle and Save Events in November. Bring in your burned out CFLs and receive a free CFL at Home Depot (by Costco), 1335 N. 205th Street in Shoreline, Saturday, November 3, from 11 to 2. The following Saturday, November 11, Recycle and Save will be held at Lowes, 12525 Aurora Ave N. from 11 to 2. Up to three free CFLs can be exchanged per household.
Have you ever said to yourself, “Geez, my furnace is super inefficient.” or “Whoa, is that a draft I just felt?” or “It would be nice to see through the condensation that’s developed on my single-pane windows.” or “I wonder whether my house has any insulation in its walls?” Well, there’s a phenomenal resource that’s offered to home owners and business within the City called Community Power Works that can help you resolve all of those issues and more!
CPW is a group that’s partnered with all sorts or great organizations, including the City and local financial institutions, to provide low cost ($95) home energy assessments and then can connect you with a contractor(s) to discuss various home improvements to improve the efficiency of your house with both rebates and financing with affordable rates.
There’s 3 easy steps to working through CPW.
Step 1: Sign up online and complete the discounted, $95 home assessment (valued at $400).
Step 2: Meet with a CPW-approved contractor to discuss improvements that are right for you and discuss the financing options and rebates that are available.
Step 3: Complete the upgrades that are right for you.
As an example, since I’ve just gone through the whole process myself, I’ve been able to upgrade my old oil home furnace to a super-efficient mini heat pump system with no money down, thanks to one of their local lenders, and am now making low affordable payments through my Seattle City Light bill. Easy. And every contractor we dealt with was professional and did great work.
There’s a lot more that can be done though than just replacing furnaces. If you’re interested in making your home more weatherized or efficient, look into CPW. Councilmember Richard Concil has already too.
The Mystery of the Missing Heat from Seattle Community Power Works on Vimeo.
Seattle, WA – The summer sun is on its way, and now is the time to get solar panels up on the roof to capture clean, renewable energy! Solarize Seattle: Northeast has officially extended program registration through Monday, April 30th to Northeast Seattle residents and small businesses.
The campaign’s limited-time offer provides a discounted price on solar installations and takes community members through a step-by-step educational process to purchase solar systems. In just three months, 21 Northeast Seattle residents have already contracted to install solar on their homes, adding more than 100 kilowatts of clean solar energy to the city’s power grid. The Solarize Seattle: Northeast campaign intends to install solar on more than 50 Northeast Seattle homes by the summer of 2012. The campaign is a partnership between nonprofits Northwest SEED and Sustainable NE Seattle and local solar installation firms A&R Solar and NW Wind & Solar.
To date, nearly 300 people have registered to participate. Northeast Seattleites who want to get in on the Solarize deal should register online at www.solarizewa.org/registration by Monday, April 30th. Registrants will have access to free educational workshops, a free site assessment to determine solar suitability, and a 25 percent price discount derived from the program’s economies of scale.
Beyond increasing Seattle’s appetite for clean energy, Solarize Seattle: Northeast has helped small businesses grow their workforce with local green jobs. According to Adam Pinsky of NW Wind & Solar, “Solarize Seattle: Northeast has enabled us to add an additional installation crew as well as an additional sales consultant.” Reeves Clippard of A&R Solar has seen similar results, stating that “We’ve added three full-time jobs so far and plan to add a couple more because of the Solarize campaign.” He adds that, “Besides our own growth, it has been great to be more involved with the community, and see first hand how a small group of concerned citizens are able to make such a great impact.”
Interested Northeast Seattle residents and small business owners are encouraged to find out more about Solarize Seattle: Northeast by visiting www.solarizewa.org or attending one of the program’s free educational workshops. The next workshop will take place Saturday, April 28th from 11:00AM-12:30PM at St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church (4805 NE 45th St, Seattle, WA 98105). All workshops are free and open to the public.
About Solarize Seattle: Northeast
Solarize Seattle: Northeast is a community effort designed to drive solar installations through a group purchase program. Northwest SEED’s past Solarize campaigns in Queen Anne and Magnolia increased Seattle’s annual installation rate by 100% in 2011. Northwest SEED is a nonprofit organization with a mission to establish a clean, diverse, and affordable Northwest energy system based on the efficient use of renewable resources. We work directly with communities to identify practical solutions that support a sustainable local economy founded on locally owned energy assets.
The senator was here to speak at the SustainableWorks press conference on Jan. 7. She praised the nonprofit program that brings together federal stimulus dollars, utility incentives, and skilled contractors to perform home energy retrofits. 180 households in the Wedgwood/Ravenna pilot area have signed up so far.
November, 2009 – homes are still being accepted for discounted energy audits and retrofits through this nonprofit pilot project. You can sign up on the SustainableWorks website.
If you live or own a building in the blocks east of 20 Ave NE, north of NE 65th, west of 35th NE, and south of NE 80th, then you are within the target area for a SustainableWorks pilot program for home energy retrofits. Stimulus funds and other incentives make this an excellent time to get an audit and retrofit your home.
SustainableWorks home energy retrofit pilot project boundaries.
Q: What if I’m just outside the boundaries?
A: Folks living within 5 streets of the boundary (e.g. 80-85th) will be allowed to participate in the pilot program AS LONG AS THERE IS A COMMITTED BLOCK CAPTAIN willing to take on a leadership role. SustainableWorks will NOT actively organize the area outside of the boundary, but will FULLY SUPPORT any Block Captains that want to organize their blocks.
Mayor Greg Nickels and House Speaker Frank Chopp helped publicly launch the project on October 17 at Eckstein Middle School, joining neighbors, union members, and SustainableWorks volunteers and staff.
If you are interested in finding out more, know others who would benefit from this opportunity, or want to help make this pilot program a success, please call (206) 575-2252 or email email@example.com. This is a great opportunity to reduce our energy bills and reduce our carbon footprint.
For more information or to sign up for an audit, see the SustainableWorks website.
(Note: SustainableWorks is indeed a nonprofit despite the .com web address. The .org address was already taken when they set up the site.)