How Much Will Energy Star Rated Appliances Save You?

Tuesday, August 19, 2014 12:17

Energy StarWhen you consider that home appliances like refrigerators, dishwashers and laundry machines account for about 13% of your home energy costs, it only makes sense to take a close look at their efficiency. High-efficiency appliances like those with Energy Star ratings not only save money in the long run, but they also benefit the environment. Case in point: In 2010, Americans saved enough power with their Energy Star-rated appliances to prevent greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to those from 33 million cars, which also equaled about $18 billion in utility bill savings.

Energy Star-rated appliances can have higher price tags than their standard counterparts, but you must consider the dollars you’ll save over the lifetime of the appliance, which, in most cases, more than makes up for the initial cost increase.

What is Energy Star? Read the rest of this entry »

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    LED Takes the Lead in Power Tools

    Thursday, July 10, 2014 10:02
    Posted in category Green Buildings


    For decades we’ve been holding the key to efficient lighting technology in the palm of our hands. Universally acknowledged as the most sustainable choice in the crowded light bulb aisle, LED lights have been embedded in your television remote control for the past 50 years. Since 1962, when GE’s Nick Holonyak, Jr. invented the first visible-spectrum light emitting diode, that little red indicator light on your TV remote has been an LED bulb.

    While LED has been slower to catch on in the home and business illumination market due to its relatively high price point, its integration into the realm of power tools has been swift and impactful. Early on, these tiny diodes were recognized as the perfect replacement to fluorescent bulbs as indicator lights, due to a longer lifetime and smaller size. Now, LEDs’ crucial lack of heat is being put to better and wider uses in even the most arduous of work environments. Read the rest of this entry »

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      Convincing Homeowners of the Importance of an Energy Audit

      Tuesday, July 8, 2014 13:23

      Home Energy Audit

      Even though one of the biggest complaints from homeowners is high energy costs, convincing them of the value of a home energy audit can still be a challenge. The audit is quick and painless, typically involving the use of infrared cameras and blower doors, and the findings in regards to the home’s energy efficiency can be addressed to drastically reduce electric bills. Pinpointing the problem is really the most reliable, efficient way to cut excess spending on utilities.

      What is a home energy audit, anyway?

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        The World Cup of Renewable Energy

        Thursday, July 3, 2014 13:28


        Unless you’ve been living under a rock, or in a room without tv access (like me), you’ve probably seen one, or several world cup games in recent days. FIFA has been everywhere lately, and not just for soccer (..or football). One hot button topic surrounding the 2014 World Cup games are the measures that planners and developers have gone through to reduce the environmental impact of the games. Of the 12 stadiums being used for the games, 10 have applied for LEED certification, a recognition that indicates a high level of sustainable awareness. While the ultimate goal of the organizers is to have some sort of green energy integrated in all of the stadiums, as of now only four of the stadiums utilize solar energy in their design. To put numbers into perspective, the installation at Estadio Mineirão produces enough energy to power about 1,200 households, while the Solar PV system at Estádio Nacional Mané Garrincha will generate enough energy to supply almost 2,000 households per day which is a great step towards creating a more sustainable society.

        Brazil has very obviously dedicated much thought and planning to their renewable energy projects, but what about some of the other countries participating in the World Cup? Read the rest of this entry »

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          The Rising Relevance of the LEED AP Accreditation

          Tuesday, May 27, 2014 11:54
          Posted in category Green Buildings

          greenbuildingImagine if the products employed in every day construction were manufactured with renewable resources, alleviating the need to use virgin materials. This is one of the objectives of LEED, among others, including improving indoor environmental quality and creating innovations that reduce inefficiencies in water and other resource consumption. With all the changes occurring in the environmental landscape, and the rise in value of green building, the LEED AP accreditation is becoming increasingly authoritative.

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            Tags: leed, leed ap

            Convincing Homeowners of the Benefits of Air Sealing

            Friday, April 25, 2014 14:44


            A challenge contractors often face is convincing homeowners of the many benefits of air sealing. Often times, homeowners see this as no more than an additional expense that they do not need. However, what many homeowners do not realize is that air sealing can make a great difference in air quality while also lowering energy bills. As a contractor, you want to do your best to look out for your clients. Here are some tips to convince them of the benefits of air sealing. By utilizing these, you may be able to increase air sealing sales, which benefits not only you as a contractor but the homeowners in the long term as well.

            Show Visuals

            Visuals can be a great tool to help convince people about the benefits of air sealing. Some studies have come to the conclusion that 65% of people are visual learners and the effective use of visuals can help decrease learning time, improve comprehension, enhance retrieval, and increase retention. I recommend showing a chart like the one above from the EPA when explaining air sealing benefits to a homeowner. Read the rest of this entry »

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              Gateway to Green Building – LEED Green Associate

              Monday, April 21, 2014 11:27


              Getting a LEED certification is not just a way of demonstrating a commitment to environmental wellness; it’s also a way of enhancing the asset value of a building.

              More than 30 major cities across the US enacted disclosure requirements last year, requiring commercial building owners to disclose green building performance metrics. With the focus of the green building industry gaining importance, the practice of greening a building spans from existing constructions to new design projects.

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                Push Coming to Shove For Those Seeking to Take LEED Exam

                Monday, March 31, 2014 16:26

                LEED v4 exam prep

                LEED version 4 is approaching, and with it comes a suite of changes to the exam content, material and format. Individuals who have passed the test before the changeover, which occurs in June, will be grandfathered into the updated designation without having to retest. Considering the extent of the modifications, many candidates are hurrying to sit for the exam while it is still in the decidedly more manageable version 3 format.

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                  Nailing Down the Difference between LEED v3 and LEED v4

                  Tuesday, February 11, 2014 11:52

                  Difference between LEED v3 and LEED v4As the standard in green building best practices, the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) system is the world’s preeminent green building rating program, with 1.5 million square feet of building space certified to LEED every day. LEED version 3, also known as LEED 2009, is now up for revision as USGBC members cooperate to vote on its next iteration, LEED v4.

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                    What is LEED Green Associate?

                    Wednesday, November 27, 2013 10:48
                    Posted in category Green Buildings

                    Before going into detail about the LEED Green Associate accreditation, let us quickly remind you, as we already went through it in previous articles, what LEED is. LEED is an internationally recognized green building certification, providing guidelines on the development of sustainable buildings. There are several ways for an individual to be certified and recognized as a LEED expert and the LEED Green Associate accreditation is the first step, the one that will open you the door. Read the rest of this entry »

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