Tips on Shutting Down Your Home for Winter Holiday Travel

Here are some easy but important tips to help you keep costs down, reduce your environmental impact, and keep the pipes from freezing while you are away this winter.

1. Set your thermostat between 52 and 55 degrees Fahrenheit. Anything lower and you could endanger your pipes when temperatures are freezing. Anything higher and you are wasting energy!

2. If you live in a single family home or condominium, you can also turn down your water heater or put it into vacation mode. There is no need to heat water to hot temperatures when no one is going to be using it.

3. Use all of your window defenses—make sure windows are closed and latched, and close curtains and blinds to help keep the cold from getting in. If you … [view entry]

How would you spend $500K to improve our city & environment?

Cambridge has allocated $500,000 for implementing citizen ideas as part of its Participatory Budget initiative. The projects must be capital projects on city property that benefit the public. Submit some climate resiliency, energy efficiency, or renewable energy ideas!

Brainstorming welcome. Check out the site below and share your ideas. Yes, that means you!

http://cambridgema.nationbuilder.com/[view entry]

Repair Cafe – Saturday 9/27 from 10-2!

Don’t miss this fantastic free event! Bring anything of yours that needs fixing & get help repairing it. Save money, be good to the planet, AND have fun doing it! Details here.

 

repaircafeflyer[view entry]

Save the Dates! Upcoming Environmental Events

There’s a ton of great stuff to put on your calendar this month and next…

PARK(ing) Day is September 19 – The City of Cambridge will transform parking spaces into something more surprising for a day. It’s a great time to learn what the city is up to, meet your neighbors, and have some fun. CEA will be in Central Square, come say hi! (And pick up some swag!)

You can also find us at the Danehy Park Family Day! September 20 @ 11:00PM.

Join the City of Cambridge for this invigorating panel discussion “Getting towards Net Zero” at the Cambridge Main Library on September 23 @6:00PM. See: Invitation4_9_4_2014 for more details. Hosted by the City of Cambridge’s Net Zero Task Force.

Interested in what’s new in building energy efficiency? … [view entry]

We’re hiring! Energy Assistant Planner

We’re seeking a full-time Energy Assistant Planner for this 2-year contract position. Details below. See the original posting here.

ESSENTIAL DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES:

The Energy Assistant Planner will assist with and manage a variety of energy outreach and planning activities, program analysis and data tracking, with a focus on community and stakeholder engagement in energy efficiency and renewable energy. This person will be a member of an eleven person team within the Environmental and Transportation Planning division of the Community Development Department, doing innovative and collaborative work with other city departments with a focus on renters, landlords, homeowners, businesses, schools, higher education institutions, community groups, non-profits and the local utility company and also including regional, state and federal energy agencies.

Primary responsibilities will be in three main areas:

Multi-Family Residential Energy [view entry]

Cambridge advances to the next round of the Georgetown University Energy Prize  

The City of Cambridge is one step  closer to $5 million for our energy efficiency efforts. On Thursday,  August 7, the Georgetown University Energy Prize announced 52 quarterfinalists that will advance to the next round in the two-year competition for a $5 million grand prize, and we’re on the list! Read the announcement here.

The prize will be awarded to the community the demonstrates the most effective and innovative ways to reduce energy consumption. To learn more about the competition, see www.guep.org

Stay tuned for updates on our progress! Interested in getting involved? Email Meghan Shaw at outreach@cambridgeenergyalliance.org[view entry]

Money Saving Light Bulbs

During the summer of 2014 several high school students interned at the Cambridge Energy Alliance helping with canvassing and outreach across Cambridge. The interns also wrote a few blogs on topics they were interested in related to energy efficiency and solar power. The following is one of their blogs.  

 

Today, unfortunately, money is on the minds of many people. This blog offers a simple and straightforward strategy to save money, and energy, by using different types of light bulbs. Currently in the US most people use incandescent light bulbs in their households. However, slowly the tide has turned to Compact Fluorescent Lamps (CFLs) bulbs, which offer greater service and economic satisfaction. But what is it that makes these light bulbs so different? Of course they all have differences in their structure, … [view entry]

Japan and Cambridge Target Renewable Energy

During the summer of 2014 several high school students interned at the Cambridge Energy Alliance helping with canvassing and outreach across Cambridge. The interns also wrote a few blogs on topics they were interested in related to energy efficiency and solar power. The following is one of their blogs.  

 

Renewable energy and energy efficiency may be a common topic in Cambridge, but there is still much we can learn from around the world.

In Japan, energy efficiency policies have been administered under the Energy Conservation Law since 1979, which forces manufacturers to increase the energy efficiency of their products. However, energy efficiency and renewable energy has become more essential in Japan today.

After the Tohoku earthquake and tsunami, which took place in Fukushima Daiichi in March 2011, Japan reconsidered its energy … [view entry]

Solar Panels in Cold Climates

During the summer of 2014 several high school students interned at the Cambridge Energy Alliance helping with canvassing and outreach across Cambridge. The interns also wrote a few blogs on topics they were interested in related to energy efficiency and solar power. The following is one of their blogs.  

 

Think about this: as of now, Germany is the world leader in solar energy. It uses more solar power than any other country in the world. Now think about this: Germany is equal to Alaska in solar resources. If Germany is a good place for solar paneling, then Cambridge must be too! But can cold climate places really sustain solar paneling?

What most people don’t know is that solar panels run off of light, not heat. Many panels have the ability … [view entry]

Obama Announces Plan to Cut Power Plant Emissions

At the beginning of last month, President Barack Obama announced his plans for limiting greenhouse gas emissions from the thousands of active power plants in the United States.  This is part of his pledge to cut American’s carbon emissions by about 17 percent by 2020. While the details of the plan have not yet been specified, Obama says his rules will bring down the heat-trapping greenhouse gasses that are responsible for global warming. One downside to the plan that critics have pointed out would be the closing of many existing power plants, which would prompt an increase of the price of electricity.  However, the White House says that action against climate change must be taken immediately or warming and erratic weather will increasingly become disruptive and will endanger the public’s well-being around … [view entry]

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