In the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, people are asking themselves what they can do to lessen their reliance on centralized systems for their electricity, heat and transportation needs. As climate change brings the potential for more intense and frequent extreme weather events, the desire for alternative energy options is becoming more…Continue
The most terrified I've ever been was was the time I got called to do a home energy audit of the haunted house-as-a-system down the street. I still shudder when I think of that night. Yes, it was nighttime. The caller who hired me, a woman with a sultry voice, said that was the only…Continue
Recently, the Obama government has sanctioned relief funds for people affected by the super storm Sandy as part of its LIHEAP or Low income Home Energy Assistance Program. According to the reports, around 284,000 homes have been affected in the catastrophe. The total financial loss estimated so far amounts to $88 billion. As a…Continue
If so, you'll be in good company. The 11th annual gathering of all those involved in 'building green' into the national fabric looks set to be the biggest yet – with 35,000 architects, facility managers, educators and green innovators expected to talk, walk and network their way around the Moscone…Continue
Added by Kaplan Clean Tech on November 7, 2012 at 8:45am — No Comments
If you're planning on coming to the Habitat X Conference at Skyline College in San Francisco, you'll get to study alongside some of the most well-respected people in the industry.
On Monday December 10th, Ann Edminster will join us to discuss the shift in…Continue
Added by Chris Dorsi on November 8, 2012 at 1:00pm — No Comments
Reposted from i.e., the Center for Energy and Environment's Innovation Exchange blog -- http://mncee.org/Innovation-Exchange/ie/
In previous posts, I’ve explained how to incorporate smart phones and apps into energy audits (here and …Continue
Last Friday I had the opportunity to attend a webinar put on by Energy Circle titled “Hurricane Sandy and the Home Performance Industry: How Do We Respond?” Peter Troast, CEO of Energy Circle, shared that when he woke up on Friday, he felt the need to start a bigger conversation—thus a webinar was born. For being a last-minute idea, the webinar was a huge success with a lot of response, which serves as yet another testament to the great people of this industry.…Continue
Added by Macie Melendez on November 5, 2012 at 1:21pm — No Comments
This is personal. When I heard reports about rampant waste and abuse in the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) that turned out to be false, I thought of all the people I know who worked tirelessly to meet one goal of ARRA—to weatherize 600,000 homes before March, 2012—and it made me very angry. The men and women of the Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP) met and exceeded that goal, with minimum fraud, abuse, and waste. In fact, they reached 1-million homes weatherized…Continue
As I write this editorial in early October, the outcome of the election remains uncertain. That’s just fine, because it allows me to offer early advice to whichever candidate wins. Here are some recommendations based on my years with Home Energy.
The government plays an important role in lowering energy demand. If Americans expect the government to establish policies to regulate natural-gas fracking and power plant emissions, then it should also address energy efficiency. The…Continue
Building Science is not really science; it is more of a concept. While the concepts were developed by scientists the system itself is not really hard science. The concepts are generally employed by building analysts and construction professionals. While I consider myself a student of building science I do not consider myself a building scientist. I am simply a tradesman with special training. While some in the field might have different opinions about their role in this industry I am…Continue
Will new technologies democratize energy much the way the Internet did information?
Industry movement seems to point in that direction with the rise of the smart grid, time-of-day pricing, distributed solar, and the electric vehicle. Together these technologies offer a vision of a less centralized energy system, one where communities and households ‘vote in’ or shape the electric grid by how they decide to consume energy, a phenomenon also called the …Continue
A seldom practiced design procedure, equipment selection, has been part of the International Residential Code for many years, and local MA/RI code at least since 2010. This critical step is the second part of residential system design, following a Manual J load calculation and prior to the Manual D duct design. I think confusion around the dated manual has contributed to lack of use and enforcement. Whether you are installing an air-conditioner, heat pump, furnace, or boiler, there…Continue
I've been wondering lately why we're so hell bent on testing houses. After all, we're a bunch of smart building scientist type guys and gals, right? We may not be Joe Lstiburek's (for which our families and fiends, unbeknownst to them, are mighty grateful), but we have a working knowledge of air and moisture movement, thermal and pressure boundaries, various Deltas (T, P, and the rest), and all that other stuff BPI made us learn. We don't assess houses one day in Tallahassee, the next in…Continue
"Ma'am, we've just tested your house and found your infiltration rate to be 16.7 ACH50, your R-values to be only 26% of the IECC…Continue
Maureen Mahle is the vice president and director of Sustainable Housing Services for Steven Winter Associates, Inc. She’s also new to the Home Energy Board of Directors. As a welcome to the board, and as an introduction to our readers, we decided to get to know Maureen a little better. Below is our conversation.
It was my first weatherization conference since becoming the editor of Home Energy. I remember sitting in the crowd listening to the opening speaker and being very inspired. We’re soldiers, I thought. Some of us are on the front lines—the weatherization workers—and some of us, like the staff at Home Energy, offer support from the safety of our offices in Berkeley. We are fighting for our nation’s energy security, and for the health of children and adults, and for the survival…Continue
Added by Jim Gunshinan on October 17, 2012 at 3:00pm — No Comments
The discovery of new materials for making cheap and efficient solar cells is the Holy Grail for solar panels industry.
Some recent findings represent a significant step towards achieving that goal.…Continue
Added by Gjorevski Saso on October 15, 2012 at 10:02am — No Comments
Back in May, I was looking to buy a new flat screen computer monitor for my home office. After spending ten minutes searching online, I found the best deals at J&R Electronics and decided to go down to their Sunnyvale store to make sure that I could find a model that would connect successfully to my MacBook Air laptop. I was overwhelmed by the vast selection of flat screen monitors and really had no idea which one to go for after I narrowed my search down to a 23" size monitor and a…Continue
Added by Alex Katzman on October 11, 2012 at 8:49am — No Comments
When your "check engine" light comes on in your car, your mechanic (or you, with a low-cost codes reader) can get a quick readout about the possible problem(s). Now, CA's Title 24 will require something similar for Rooftop HVAC units by 2014.
See this article:…Continue