Tag Archives: Office of Energy Efficiency

Eartheasy – A great resource for better living

Eartheasy is a wonderful, rich and well executed site about sustainable living. It offers information, activities and ideas which help us live more simply, efficiently and with less impact on the environment. Here are some examples – have fun!
Enhance your backyard, create a fun project for the family and contribute to local wildlife conservation – develop your own Backyard Wildlife Habitat. Young children especially can learn the basics of nature appreciation through their own window into the natural world.
“This victory alone is not the change we seek. It is only the chance for us to make that change.” — Barack Obama, Nov. 4, 2008. Here are six ways we can start building a sustainable future for ourselves and the world.

Compost is the single most important supplement you can give your garden soil. Composting is a simple way to add nutrient-rich humus which fuels plant growth and restores vitality to depleted soil.

One-pot cooking used to be the exclusive domain of bachelors, campers and college students just moved away from home. Here are a few variations on the “one-pot” theme, which broaden the possibilities for creative cuisine, while maintaining the simplicity and energy savings of one-pot cooking.

The cost of clothing goes way beyond the price tag. The environment is impacted by the growing of fibers for textiles, the manufacture and distribution of clothing, and even the care and maintenance of garments. Here are some tips to help reduce the environmental costs of clothing.

The World War II home front was the most important and broadly participatory green experiment in U.S. history. Is it a model we should use today?

You can also visit the Eartheasy Shop to find products suitable for energy efficiency, water conservation, composting, gardening, food security, natural lawn care and pest control, and lighting.

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Progress on the insulation front on PEI

More than 1,200 P.E.I. households have taken advantage of government-subsidized home energy audits this year.

Mike Proud, manager of the Office of Energy Efficiency, told CBC News Monday that the rising price of fuel created a lot of demand for the audits over the summer and into the fall.

“It’s mostly insulation work. We hoped that that would be the case because we know that that’s the best investment to make,” said Proud.

“We’ve seen a lot of people doing the basement insulation, the attic insulation, even some doing exterior wall insulation.”

Proud believes when the price of furnace oil began to fall in July some homeowners may have postponed their plans to install alternative heating systems like pellet stoves, and decided on less-expensive upgrades.

“The whole popularity of the wood stove/pellet stove type of thing, you know, while it’s still there, it certainly hasn’t overtaken us like it did last year,” he said.

Since the beginning of the fiscal year, April 1, to the end of November, the office has loaned $1.2 million from a budget of $2 million.

Source CBC

Insulation – How to save the most money for the least cost

Last week I met with Mike Proud of the PEI Office for Energy Efficiency to get the facts behind the idea that it is not the toys (my purchases of wood stoves, pellet stoves, solar etc) that really save you money but stopping the leaks and insulating your home. This is what I found out – I feel such a fool for not starting here.

The Big Picture – Assume an average house on PEI – 1,200 square feet – If you insulate your basement and your attic and block the main leaks you can save up 40% of your oil bill. The average oil consumption on PEI is 3,500 litres. So about $1,200 at current prices. That is a lot of money for anybody.

The details – Your basement and your attic are the key areas. Mike Advises R50 in the attic for older houses and R60-80 for new houses. I discovered that I might have R12 at best. In October I am adding the rest that I should have had all along. I will post the details with pictures and commentary when the work is done.

Here is our basement under the Granny Flat. Robin did all of this herself with the aid of a neighbour’s son. I can’t recall where I was then! Styrofoam on the wall and fibreglas in the edge. It took her less than a day.

Air Leaks – An important part of the situation. 30% of the loss of heat in your house. Our electrical wall sockets are an important area of loss. We are using the child proofing plugs right now but are thinking of going further and removing the plugs and insulating behind them. We also have new windows but this is a huge expense. You can use plastic film. Our doors also did not fit as snugly as they should and we also use insulating door tape that sticks onto the jam.

The PEI Government can help you:

Beginning August 1, four new or amended programs for existing homes will be available through the Office of Energy Efficiency. The programs are budgeted at $1 million, with money coming from the Trust Fund for Clean Air and Climate Change. An energy audit will be required to be eligible for all of the programs. The new programs include:

Low Income Loan Relief – Low income clients who wish to take advantage of the Prince Edward Island Energy Efficiency Loans Program, will now be eligible for up to 50 per cent loan relief. Up to $15,000 in income – 50 per cent of loan will be written off; between $15,000 and $30,000 in income – 25 per cent of loan will be written off. The program provides loans for home improvement measures recommended in an ecoEnergy Energy Efficiency Evaluation Report.

Renewable Heating – Renewable heating systems (wood, wood-pellet, solar, etc.) will be eligible under the Prince Edward Island Energy Efficiency Loan Program, to a maximum of $10,000, as long as the client makes efficiency improvements to the home as well.

High-Efficiency Oil-fired Heating Systems – An additional subsidy of $300 will be available for Energy Star Certified oil fired heating systems installed in combination with an indirect water heater or an outdoor temperature reset control. This will be supplemented by an additional $1,200 already available in other incentives and grants.

A successful program from last year will be returning:

Home Energy Low-income Program (HELP) – Reinstatement of this program will provide low-income homeowners with free assistance in completing comprehensive air-sealing, installation of energy saving devices and free furnace cleaning. Homeowners who have previously utilized this program will be eligible for the enhanced HELP program. The 2008-09 program is particularly focused on controlling air leakages – the major cause of home energy loss.

These programs are in addition to the Prince Edward Island EcoEnergy Audit Assistance Program and the Prince Edward Island Energy Efficiency Loan and Grant Program that were announced in March of this year. Under these programs the province pays half the cost of a home energy audit for households earning more than $30,000 and the full cost of audits for households earning less than $30,000.

Information on these programs is available on the Office of Energy Efficiency web page at www.gov.pe.ca/oee.

Mike tells me that it is easier to call him and his office at 902 620-3690 or 1-877-734-6336

Here is a great check list if you want to get a handle on what your opportunity to save will be: The pdf is here: air-leakage-checklist-aug-26-2008-1

If you want to do this work your self, Here are some good tips on how to do the work from the Federal Government

Here is the Kit that you can get from the PEI Government: