Resources and Links at Georgia Energy Challenge
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Purchase Renewable Energy
For customers of most Electric Membership Cooperatives (EMCs) in Georgia, electricity produced from renewable resources is available through Green Power EMC. Green Power EMC utilizes resources such as biomass, solar, wind, and water to generate electricity. This renewable energy is available in subscription blocks of 150 kilowatt-hours per month, and a portion of all Green Power EMC energy sales goes to support continued growth of energy generated from these cleaner resources. For more information, visit the Green Power EMC website.
Reduce Carbon Emissions
Zero Energy Homes
On Site Assistance for Residents
0% Interest Loans to make Homes Energy Efficient
Financing is now available through Oglethorpe Power Corporation, Electric Cities of Georgia, Municipal Gas Authority of Georgia and Estes Heating and Air. The residential energy efficiency financing programs, which are funded through GEFA as a result of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, allow homeowners to apply for funding to complete a number of energy improvement projects. Please see the press release on participating companies, the loan programs offered, loan terms and eligible projects throughout Georgia.
Home Energy AuditsA home energy audit is the first step to assess how much energy your home consumes and to evaluate what measures you can take to make your home more energy efficient. During the audit, you can pinpoint where your house is losing energy and also determine the efficiency of your home’s heating and cooling systems. Thorough audits often use equipment such as blower doors, which measure the extent of leaks in the building envelope, and infrared cameras, which reveal hard-to-detect areas of air infiltration and missing insulation.
Customers of Georgia Power Company and most of the Electric Membership Cooperatives (EMCs) in Georgia can request energy audits from their electric utility. In most cases, this service is offered to customers free of charge. Contact your electricity provider for details.
Home Performance with ENERGY STARContractors participating in a locally sponsored Home Performance with ENERGY STAR program can help you cost-effectively improve your home's energy efficiency. These specially trained contractors evaluate your home using state-of-the-art equipment and recommend comprehensive improvements that will yield the best results. They can also help you take advantage of federal tax credits for energy efficiency improvements. To learn more about Home Performance with ENERGY STAR and find a contractor in your area, visit the website.
Low-Income Weatherization AssistanceSome elderly, disabled, and low-income Georgians may qualify for the Low-Income Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP). Services performed as part of this program typically include reducing air infiltration through attic and wall insulation, sealing bypasses (cracks, gaps, holes) around doors and windows, caulking, weather-stripping, and the repair or installation of energy-saving heating and cooling equipment. The result is a more comfortable, safer home and lower energy bills. To determine if you or someone you know is eligible for this service, please click here.
On-Site Assistance for Businesses and Organizations
Georgia Institute of Technology Enterprise Innovation Institute
The Georgia Tech Enterprise Innovation Institute helps enterprises improve their competitiveness through the application of science, technology and innovation. Services include training, technical assistance and low- or no cost energy audits for qualified industrial enterprises.
International Facilities Manager Association (IFMA)
IFMA is the largest professional organization for facility managers and provides energy efficiency and other sustainability resources on the Green Zone section of its website. Find a local chapter by clicking here.
National Association of Energy Service Companies (NAESCO)
NAESCO is the national trade association for energy service companies that provides information on energy service performance contracting and other energy efficiency financing options.
United States Green Building Council (USGBC)
The USGBC is a national nonprofit organization that administers the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) green building rating system and provides publications, research, and other material that demonstrates the cost-effectiveness of high-performance buildings.
Click here to find a local chapter.
Find a LEED Accredited Professional.
University of Georgia Engineering Outreach Service
Southface Energy Institute
Association of Energy Engineers (AEE)
Kill A Watt Program
The Georgia Environmental Facilities Authority (GEFA) has partnered with the Georgia Public Library Service (GPLS) to bring more people to libraries and enable all patrons to save money on their electric bills by “going green.” Beginning in August 2009, public libraries around the state will introduce the “Kill-a-Watt” loan program. Its goal is to help residents measure both their energy consumption and the efficiency of the electric appliances in their homes.
Citizens will be able to check out a “Kill_a-Watt” Energy Detector Toolkit at any branch library. The “Kill-a-Watt” unit measures energy consumption by the kilowatt-hour — the same unit of measurement that utilities use. It can estimate the electrical consumption and costs associated with each appliance by the hour, day, week, month or even an entire year. Each toolkit will also include instructions on how to use the meter, what the information means and tips about energy consumption.
BUILDING OPERATOR CERTIFICATION (BOC)
GEFA and Gwinnett Technical College have brought the nationally recognized BUILDING OPERATOR CERTIFICATION (BOC) training program to Georgia. BOC saves money for companies by improving the energy efficiency of heating and cooling systems, and enabling operators to be proactive in compliance with environmental regulations affecting the facility operations and maintenance.
Who can benefit? Building engineers, building service managers, maintenance supervisors, O&M technicians, electricians, skilled trades and facilities specialists. https://aceweb.gwinnetttech.edu/wconnect/CourseStatus.awp?~~112CED1994A
U.S. Department of Energy
Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy
The U.S. Department of Energy’s main website for information on a wide variety of efficiency and renewable energy topics. From efficient lighting to solar electric technologies, you can find it all here.
Federal government agencies are under a requirement to reduce their energy usage 30 percent by 2015. The Federal Energy Management Program is designed to assist these agencies in meeting this goal, but it also has a wealth of resources and best practices that can be applied to your business or organization.
Industrial Technologies Program (ITP)
ITP works with U.S. industry to improve energy performance, reduce cost, and enhance productivity. Companies can find information and receive technical assistance, including free or low-cost energy audits, through this program.
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Clean Energy Program
EPA’s Clean Energy Program offers options, such as the Green Power Partnership, Combined Heat and Power Partnership, and other programs designed to reduce the impact of energy use.
Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Sustainability Division
The Sustainable Office Toolkit is a set of resources and tools developed to help offices move toward sustainability through practices such as recycling, energy and water conservation, and “green” building.
Southface Energy Institute
National Energy Education Development Project (NEED)
Southeast Energy Efficiency Alliance
The Southeast Energy Efficiency Alliance (SEEA) works to advance energy efficiency through networking, program activities and education. The non-profit organization, based in Atlanta, is active in 11 states throughout the Southeast, and collaborates with businesses, utilities, governments, public utility commissions, energy service companies, manufacturers, retailers, energy and environmental organizations, low-income energy advocates, large energy consumers and universities, to promote energy-efficient policies and practices.
SEEA recently published a report, completed by a team of researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology and Duke University's Nicholas Institute, which utilized state-of-the-art economic modeling to evaluate the potential impact of energy efficiency policies in the Southeast. The report also includes profiles for each state in the region (including the District of Columbia) and the economic and employment impacts of energy efficiency for each individual state. View the report here.
DSIRE is a comprehensive source of information on state, local, utility, and federal incentives and policies that promote renewable energy and energy efficiency. Established in 1995 and funded by the U.S. Department of Energy, DSIRE is an ongoing project of the North Carolina Solar Center and the Interstate Renewable Energy Council.
Tax Incentives Assistance Project (TIAP)
The Tax Incentives Assistance Project, sponsored by a coalition of public interest nonprofit groups, government agencies, and other organizations in the energy efficiency field, is designed to give consumers and businesses information they need to make use of the federal income tax incentives for energy efficient products and technologies passed by Congress as part of the Energy Policy Act of 2005.
Green Chamber of the South
The Green Chamber of the South serves businesses throughout the Southeast, connecting green businesses, clean tech and corporations with sustainability programs to share best practices learn and grow. It offers businesses exposure, networking opportunities, collaboration, workshops and seminars as well as a Green Incubator. The Green Chamber of the South provides sustainable businesses in the Southeast with a strong organization, guidance, and ample opportunities for collaboration and growth. For more information: www.greencs.org
Learn How Your Home Uses Energy
Take a virtual tour of this home to see how you can save energy and money – room by room. Be sure to select Broadband or Dial-up to get started.Explore Now
Set your thermostat to 68 degrees during the heating season 78 degrees during the cooling season.
Conserve Heat In Your Oven
Preheat your oven only when needed—and never for more than 10 minutes.
Remove lamps where you have more lighting than you really need, but be sure to maintain safe lighting conditions for work areas. Turn lights off when they’re not in use.
Let Nature Lend a Hand
If windows face south, open drapes during the day to utilize heat from the sun. If you have large windows that do not receive direct sun, close drapes to retain heat.
Reduce the Hot Water Temperature
Reducing the temperature on your water heater thermostat decreases heat loss from your tank. For washing hands, you may be able to turn the temperature to 110 degrees F (43 degrees C). Dishwashing may require higher temperature settings, e.g. 130 degrees F (54 degrees C).
Use Household Appliances Efficiently
Refrigerators, freezers, and dishwashers are the biggest energy users and together can cost several hundred dollars a year to operate. Use toaster ovens, pressure cookers, or other small appliances instead of the oven when possible. Do not use dishwashers or clothes dryers until you have a full load. For more information on how to use appliances more efficiently, click here.
Turn Off Electronic Equipment and Appliances When Not in Use
Utilize the sleep mode available on most computers which, when activated, greatly reduces energy consumption. Unplug items that will not be used for extended periods, as many electronics consume energy even when turned off. Don’t underestimate the energy savings you can get by turning off unused televisions, stereos, printers, copiers, and other electronics. Taken together, these small items can use as much power as your refrigerator.
Seal Off Unused Areas and Don’t Heat or Cool Them
Storage areas represent a good place to start. Turn off heating and cooling to these areas. Block and insulate unneeded windows and door openings.
Keep Exterior Doors Closed as Much as Possible
Don’t waste your money heating or cooling the outdoors.
Replace standard incandescent light bulbs with compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs). CFLs use up to two-thirds less energy and last six to 10 times longer than traditional lighting. For more information on CFLs, including proper disposal, click here.
Install Programmable Thermostats
To control heating and cooling costs, install a programmable thermostat that is compatible with your HVAC system.
Install Automatic Room Lighting Controls
Similar to programmable thermostats, these devices help optimize lighting use by automatically turning lights on or off, depending on occupancy or time of day. Sensors and timers work well and are usually installed by a specialist.
Seal the Gaps
Air can leak into interior areas from the attic, basement, and crawl space and cause heating or cooling loss. Insulate doors and windows with weather-stripping or caulking. Seal around ducts, plumbing, and any other openings in walls or ceilings to reduce air leakage. Install foam gaskets on electrical outlets.
Replace Furnace and Air Conditioner Filters
The dirtier they are, the harder furnaces and air conditioner have to work so be sure to clean or replace filters regularly. Clean filters are also essential for heat pumps—airflow is critical and can add years to the life of your heat pump.
Seal and Insulate Duct Work
Poorly sealed ducts can account for 10 to 30 percent of your home’s total heating and cooling costs. It can be especially costly if ducts travel through unheated or uncooled spaces such as attics, basements, or crawl spaces. Use mastic or mastic tape instead of duct tape to seal ducting.
Perform Routine Maintenance
Clean heat exchangers and maintain refrigeration equipment. These simple measures will ensure the most efficient operation of heat exchangers needed for cooling.
Repaint Building Exteriors with Light Colors
When it’s time to repaint the exterior of your building, consider using light colors. More sunlight will be reflected away from the building, thus lowering air conditioning costs—perhaps your largest energy expense. Installing a lighter colored roof will also help.
Install Water Flow Restrictors and Aerators in Sink Faucets
These measures can save you money by reducing water use (including hot water).
Wrap the Hot Water Tank with an Insulating Jacket
This simple, inexpensive measure will reduce standby heat loss from the tank. Be sure to leave the air intake vent uncovered when insulating a gas water heater.
Buy Energy-Efficient Equipment
When buying or replacing computers, copiers, and other office equipment, compare energy requirements of various models. ENERGY STAR rated equipment has approval from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Energy.
Win a Family Pass to Georgia's State Parks
Pledge to save energy for a chance to win a Family Pass to Georgia's State Parks. Two winners selected each month.
Atlanta Better Buildings Challenge
Energy assessments available through the Atlanta Better Buildings Challenge. Enter your building in the challenge now!
0% Financing for Georgia Residents to make homes energy efficient
Financing is available through select utility providers. Please see link for details on utility providers and programs.