Archive for the ‘Home’ Category

Reminder: Light Bulb Swap on Saturday!

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If you are a Cambridge resident, this is a reminder to come swap up to three of your incandescent or CFL light bulbs* for free LED replacements this Saturday, Dec. 10, at the Cambridge Winter Farmer’s Market at 5 Callender St, from 10am-2pm! We will also have a pop-up store with heavily discounted LEDs for all of your other lighting needs.

*The swap is limited to A19 and BR30 bulbs.

This event is part of the City’s 100% LED Campaign that encourages residents to change over their lighting to LEDs, which use six times less energy. Please note that the bulb swap is limited to Cambridge residents and while supplies last.

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City Offers Limited-Time Incentives to Go 100% LED!

It’s about to get a whole lot easier to upgrade your lights and save money and energy! The City’s Cambridge Energy Alliance is partnering with Eversource to launch the “100% LED Cambridge” campaign, which offers limited-time specials on LED light bulbs for Cambridge residents. The campaign encourages residents to upgrade 100% of their home lighting to LEDs, which use six times less energy than older bulbs.

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From now until November 26th, residents can go to https://www.techniart.us/Cambridge/ to get special pricing that is available to Cambridge residents only. Customers can also get discounted shipping while supplies last. Not sure what bulb to get? See our guide at CambridgeMA.gov/LED

 

 

The 100% LED campaign is one of the city’s initiatives to win the Georgetown University Energy Prize, a nationwide competition among

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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]

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]

First-Ever Energy Star Label for Clothes Dryers Now Available

The EPA has announced a brand new energy efficiency certification for clothes dryers under the Energy Star label. As known energy hogs, the potential savings are big: if all residential clothes dryers sold in the U.S. meet these new requirements, the utility cost savings will grow to more than $1.5 billion each year and more than 22 billion pounds of annual greenhouse gas emissions would be prevented.

Over 80% of U.S. homes have a clothes dryer, which on average account for approximately six percent of residential electricity consumption. In order to reduce dryers’ energy use by over 20% of the minimum 2015 standards, Energy Star dryers will incorporate technologies such as:

  • Auto termination sensors
  • Heat pumps to recapture lost hot air
  • Performance data and alerts
  • Smart grid readiness

Explains U.S. EPA … [view entry]

Solar Co-ops: Another Way to Go Solar

On Earth Day, the Rocky Mountain Insitute  reminded us of an effective tool for solar development: the solar co-operative. Like any co-operative, solar co-ops pool the resources of many in order to increase purchasing power, increase access to benefits, and create other efficiencies. Businesses and/or individual consumers band together to collectively purchase solar photovoltaic (PV) panels and share knowledge about best practices. Here are a few kinds of solar co-operatives that are relevant to Cambridge residents.

Community Solar

One type of co-operative concept called community solar can help bring solar to those who typically wouldn’t have access to it, such as renters or any households without enough rooftop sun exposure. Community solar allows customers to buy into an off-site system and receive credits on their utility bills. Customers can purchase as … [view entry]

Prepare for Winter in your Rented or Multi-Family Home

 

As the weather gets chillier, we all start looking forward to—or dreading—winter. In order to be comfortable while still being energy smart, there are some easy but important steps you can take. There is plenty of information out there on how to weatherize your entire home to keep heating costs down, but many of those actions don’t apply to people who are renting or living in a multi-family condo. Here are some tips that will still insulate your home and lower your heating bill even if you aren’t able to do bigger things like replace your boiler or add insulation in your walls:

(Cancelled)Join Our Course: The Value of Greening Your Home

** Check out the Winter Courses at Cambridge Center for Adult Education to sign up for this class when it is offered again**

Many homeowners worry about the value of their home in these times and wonder how to make sensible improvements. Come to learn how to improve the value of your home by increasing energy efficiency and conserving natural resources. We will discuss both small, easy D.I.Y. changes and large capital improvements, from weather stripping to installing geothermal systems. We will present financing options from grants to subsidized loans, and introduce expert contractors who will address your specific question and concerns. Come ready to learn and leave with concrete next steps to improve your home, take care of the planet, and invest in a sustainable future for all. Limited to 16.… [view entry]

Time is Running Out: Get Up To $2,000 from Cambridge for Installing Solar Hot Water

Through November, Cambridge Energy Alliance is offering Cambridge businesses and residents up to $2000 to install solar hot water heaters. The CEA Solar Hot Water Grant combined with the state and federal incentives, will allow you to install a new 20-year hot water heating system for up to 75% off. Average systems that are normally about $8,000 will cost less than $2000 in out-of-pocket costs.

Cambridge resident Ken Bader installed a solar hot water system a few weeks ago, saying “the grants and tax credits made this deal a no-brainer! I’m looking forward to paying (almost) nothing to heat my water.” Since his solar system allowed him to eliminate his hot water heating tank entirely he’s looking forward to the added benefit of “not having to buy a new water heater … [view entry]

NSTAR has approved an extension to the Early Boiler Replacement Rebate Pilot

Have you been thinking of replacing your 30+ year old boiler?

Now, only through the end of September 2012, the Mass Save® Home Energy Services Program is providing a temporary increased rebate for replacing 30+ year old boilers.  The rebate ranges from $1,750 to $4,000 for new efficient boilers using the same fuel and installed by October 31, 2012.  This is a large increase from the normal $400 to $1,500 in existing rebates.  A no-cost Mass Save home energy assessment is required by September 30, 2012 to determine if your boiler qualifies.

Not sure what a boiler is or if you have one?

Schedule your no-cost Mass Save home energy assessment and your home energy advisor will let you know if you have a boiler and he/she will also collect the information … [view entry]