Drive Green with Mass Energy’s Electric Vehicle Discount Program!

By Willow Cohn, Outreach and Education EcoFellow

Have you been considering buying an electric vehicle (EV)? Well, now is the right time! In November 2016, Mass Energy launched
Drive Green, a limited-time electric vehicle discount program aiming to make choosing an EV easier. Mass Energy designed the program to include affordable, available, practical electric and plug-in hybrid electric cars. Anyone can participate and receive a discount to purchase or lease an EV at participating dealers. Drive Green is modeled after similar successful programs in Colorado and Utah and is an extension of buyers’ groups for energy consumers that Mass Energy has operated since 1982. Mass Energy is a Boston-based nonprofit working to harness the collective power of energy consumers to speed the transition to a low-carbon future. You can learn more about their programs here.

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NESEA Pro Tour with the EcoFellows

EcoFellows in front of passive house on NESEA your

By Morgan O’Connor, Marketing and High Performance Building EcoFellow

Recently the EcoFellows toured two very different, yet highly efficient, building projects in Western Massachusetts. The tour was put on by our friends at the Northeast Sustainable Energy Association (NESEA) as part of their Pro Tour Series. Both projects were the work of local contractors Kent Hicks Construction, one of them being his own home and office.

Kent lives in a former grist mill that was built in 1850. In order to convert it into a home residence and office space he completed a deep energy retrofit. A deep energy retrofit is a way of renovating a space to address all energy loads and increase efficiency.

However, what made this project exceptional was Kent’s dedication to maintaining the integrity and aesthetic of the old mill building. Throughout the project, deconstruction and repurposing of original materials was a priority. This allowed for unique design features, like wainscoting made from their original metal roofing, and a dining room table made from the mill’s machinery. The flooring downstairs is also original and shows the indentations of former mill employees’ work stations. This project is a testament to how style  and energy efficiency can work together to create a beautiful and sustainable home, without compromising historical authenticity.

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Saturday Outreach in the Berkshires

By Jorge Guarin, Outreach and Education EcoFellow

Over 40 years ago CET was founded in Pittsfield, MA by a group of visionary individuals. Their mission was to help the Berkshires community take practical steps to address the energy crises of the 70’s. By focusing on energy conservation and renewable energy, CET minimized the detrimental impact those events had on the Berkshires community. After four decades, CET’s engagement with the Berkshires community has not only become more widespread to meet the needs of thousands, but it has also expanded to encompass food waste, materials management, and electric vehicles. The first Saturday of October was a prime example of the strong and everlasting relationship between CET and the Berkshires community.

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5 Easy Ways to be More Energy Efficient

By: Shelby Kuenzli, Digital Marketing EcoFellow

Here at CET, we make green make sense and have been helping people and businesses in the area save energy and money for over 40 years. Saving Energy is a community effort and you can be part of the solution! Join us in celebrating Energy Efficiency Day on Thursday, October 5 by taking these 5 easy steps to be more energy efficient in your life!

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Get a Jump on Air Source Heat Pumps!

By Morgan O’Connor, Marketing & High Performance Building EcoFellow

In New England, heating our homes can become a lifestyle, whether it be chopping wood to stoke the fire, or incessantly monitoring the thermostat – we care about how much energy we use and know we’ve done well when we can see the change on our utility bills. That’s why Air Source Heat Pumps (ASHPs) could be a great option for you! ASHPs are not necessarily new, they’ve been certified with EnergyStar since 1995, but as technological advancements continue to improve their efficiency, they have become the cutting edge of heating AND cooling. That’s right – they can do both!

Can you find the ASHP in this modern home? They are discrete enough to hide in plain sight! Home by Jeremy Levine Design

What are Air Source Heat Pumps?

Air Source Heat Pumps are highly efficient heating and cooling devices that run on electricity. They work by taking heat from the outside air and moving it into the home in times of cold weather, but with a flip of a switch they can remove heat from your home and channel it outside. This is different than most heating systems, which have to generate heat before it’s able to be used, as ASHPs only move heat.

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