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Recent Blogs
2012: A Record-Breaking Year for America’s Solar Industry

2012: A Record-Breaking Year for America’s Solar Industry

Ryan McNeill

As most industries across the country slowly climb out of the recession, solar remains one of the fastest growing sectors of the economy. How fast? According to an in-depth report by the US Solar Energy Industries Association and GTM Research, the number of solar installations increased 76% from 2011 to 2012.  [continue reading]

The Future of Home Performance is Wrapped in Cheese—Q&A with Dave Robinson

The Future of Home Performance is Wrapped in Cheese—Q&A with Dave Robinson

Macie Melendez

Dave Robinson, a principal of GreenEarthEquities, is a man in this industry that needs little introduction. If you didn’t see him at last year’s ACI event accepting the Tony Woods Award, you may have seen him teaching a class, serving as the former president of the California Building Performance Association, or performing deep energy retrofits on foreclosed homes. [continue reading]

Better Home Efficiency—The Devil is in the Details

Better Home Efficiency—The Devil is in the Details

Bill Walter

If you are a home performance professional then you will most likely look out for the same kinds of things when carrying out your energy audits. You'll probably look for things like air quality, temperature, boiler efficiency, and insulation. You'll use a range of diagnostic equipment and tools such as carbon monoxide detectors and blower doors, and you'll come up with a number of solutions to help your clients improve their efficiency ... [continue reading]

Standard Work Specifications for Single-Family Home Energy Upgrades Now Available Online

Standard Work Specifications for Single-Family Home Energy Upgrades Now Available Online

Deborah Lastowka

After several years of development and industry review, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL)  and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) are pleased to announce that the Standard Work Specifications (SWS) for Single-Family Home Energy Upgrades are now available via a user-friendly online tool, with specifications for manufactured housing and multifamily homes to follow. [continue reading]

Vermont Contractor Program Turns It Up when Temperatures Drop

Vermont Contractor Program Turns It Up when Temperatures Drop

Danielle Sass Byrnett

In an area of the country where cold weather dominates for more than half the year, one program knows how to turn up the heat to help contractors manage the influx of customers looking to improve their comfort and energy efficiency over the winter. [continue reading]

How Energy Efficiency's Story is Changing

How Energy Efficiency's Story is Changing

Elisa Wood

Not so long ago, news about energy efficiency focused on what the US could or should do, but wasn’t to save energy. It was a tale of woe. [continue reading]

Prepaid Energy Leads to Significant Drops in Energy Consumption

Prepaid Energy Leads to Significant Drops in Energy Consumption

Cindy O'Dwyer

DEFG, a consulting firm specializing in energy and consumers, launched the Prepay Energy Working Group in 2010 to explore the many critical issues presented by prepay service. Arguably, the most compelling area of study is the effect of prepayment on energy conservation and usage. The Prepay Energy Working Group engaged economist Michael Ozog, Ph.D., to apply statistical techniques widely accepted in the evaluation of utility-sponsored energy efficiency programs, to measure the effect of prepayment on ... [continue reading]

Home Energy Saver Launches Online Forum for Homeowners

Home Energy Saver Launches Online Forum for Homeowners

Tom White

Scientists at the U.S. Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab – www.lbl.gov), in partnership with the staff of Home Energy magazine (www.HomeEnergy.org), have launched the Home Energy Saver Community, an online forum for homeowners and remodelers.  [continue reading]

Solar Thermal Expands With Four New Affordable Housing Installations

Solar Thermal Expands With Four New Affordable Housing Installations

Melissa Miyara

Satellite Affordable Housing Associates based in Berkeley, California has embarked on its largest rehabilitation project to date, simultaneously recapitalizing five of their senior communities in Oakland and Berkeley. Totaling approximately 350 units of affordable senior housing, these five properties of Satellite Central, Park Boulevard Manor, Doh On Yuen, Glen Brook Terrace, and Stuart Pratt have provided affordable housing for extremely low-income seniors for over 40 years. Four of these buildings now have solar hot water systems installed ... [continue reading]

Heating and Cooling No Longer Majority of U.S. Home Energy Use

Heating and Cooling No Longer Majority of U.S. Home Energy Use

Chip Berry

For decades, space heating and cooling (space conditioning) accounted for more than half of all residential energy consumption. Estimates from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA)’s most recent Residential Energy Consumption Survey (RECS) show that 48% of energy consumption in U.S. homes in 2009 was for heating and cooling, down from 58% in 1993. Factors underpinning this trend are increased adoption of more efficient equipment, better insulation, more efficient windows, and population shifts to warmer ... [continue reading]

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