Posts Tagged ‘Department of Energy’

GreenHomes wins a Century Club Award, again!

November 5, 2012

It’s nice to be recognized.  This is the third year in a row in fact.   The EPA and the DOE have recognized GreenHomes America –  Syracuse with the Century Club Award.   An award that goes to the contractor that has improved the energy efficiency of more than 100 homes in the past year through Home Performance with ENERGY STAR.  Home Performance with ENERGY STAR offers homeowners a comprehensive whole house approach to improving energy efficiency and comfort while saving money on utility bills and helping to protect the environment. 

Our Syracuse location, a leading contractor in central New York and part of the national GreenHomes America network, improved well over 400 homes last year!

Congratulations to Syracuse!  It is great to know that as a network we are charging along across the country in states that participate in the Home Performance with ENERGY STAR program as well as states that don’t.  Look for a GreenHomes America location near you! 



Where does it all go?

November 28, 2011


If you still have a dollar to your name after a rough (at times too rough!) shopping weekend, you might want to take a look at this nifty info-graphic which helps explains an average household’s energy use, and naturally where the rest of the money goes!

High on the list of energy use in a home is, as it might be expected, heating and hot water.  Cooling is up there as well.  It does depend on where you live as to which is a bigger drain on your finances but this is precisely the reason we spend so much time talking about and fixing,  these areas.

Appliances are a much smaller part of the overall picture, but not to be ignored, of course.  If part of your Black Friday battle included fist-fighting (whew, there was some craziness out there—sort of reminds me of that zombie discussion last month!) for a brand new Energy Star dishwasher, more power to you.  It may even have been worth it if what you had was over ten years old.

Clearly as the picture suggests, heating and cooling equipment—that is your furnace, air-conditioner, or heat pump—should be in top notch shape performing their best if you are going to avoid burning money.   But what if the attic insulation doesn’t keep the heat in?  What if the duct work leaks and pumps conditioned air into the great outdoors?  What this picture tells me is that the important things in a home are being warm or cool, having hot water when we want it, the creature comforts.

You can buy the best coffee maker in the world to make a great cup of coffee, but a cracked cup with a hole in it won’t keep the coffee around or warm long enough for you to enjoy it.   Homes can just be like that.  Consider a gift for you and your family this season, one without the bruises or pepper spray dangers of holiday shopping, a comprehensive home assessment so you know where it all goes and can do something about it!



Secretary Chu cites a “Sputnik Moment” for energy policy and clean energy development

December 4, 2010

Following the thread of my post yesterday, I wanted to point you to an address at the National Press Club by Energy Secretary Chu.  Chu pointed to recent clean technology successes by China and other countries as a “Sputnik Moment” for the U.S.  We don’t can to sit back and do nothing and maintain a leadership position.  Indeed, on energy, we’ve already fallen behind in important areas.  As Chu indicated, we need to see what’s going on and marshall American ingenuity, strength, and can-do spirit to create cost-effective clean energy technologies–and I’d emphasize increasing efficiency–to power our country and drive our economy through the next century.  We should be hungry.  The Chinese and others have already started to eat our lunch on this front.


Secretary Chu mentions air-sealing…and more

October 25, 2010

Piggybacking on the “Feds on Air-Sealing” post, I thought I’d post a not-so-short video of Secretary of Energy, Dr. Steven Chu, answering questions about home energy efficiency during energy-efficiency awareness month.    He points to more DOE resources, and the DOE’s blog post about this video conversation has links to them.

Right at the beginning, Chu highlights blocking drafts (air-sealing!) and insulating. “It’s like blocking and tackling,” Chu says. “The most important thing.”

He mentions dishwashers (better than handwashing!), computers, cool roofs, and more.

Taking Home Performance National

June 1, 2009
David Lee of the U.S. EPA, speaks at a DOE Summit on Residential Energy-Efficiency. Seated on the panel were also Mike Rogers of GreenHomes America, Gil Sperling, U.S. DOE, and John Byrne, Delaware Sustainable Energy Utility

David Lee of the U.S. EPA, speaks at a DOE Summit on Residential Energy-Efficiency. Seated on the panel were also Mike Rogers of GreenHomes America, Gil Sperling, U.S. DOE, and John Byrne, Delaware Sustainable Energy Utility

I had the honor of presenting at and participating in discussions at a U.S. Department of Energy summit last week that was exploring how to bring exactly the sort of whole-house approach the GreenHomes America uses to homeowners all around the country. 
It was great talking with thought-leaders and experts from DOE, the EPA, reserach, utilities, and the private sector about how to make this happen. 
While GreenHomes is expanding to new locations, I’m glad that people will be working to bring more contractors into the fold nationally to help grow this faster and help fix more homes the right way.



%d bloggers like this: