Transition Brockville archive

Tag : Retrofitting (12)

Home Energy 101 course offered online

GCNews / March 2016

REEP Energy CoachREEP GREEN Solutions is offering a free online course on how to make your home more energy efficient.

Through a series of interactive videos and blog posts, the course walks homeowners through steps to make their homes more comfortable, save money, and help slow climate change.

The first lesson provides an overview of the systems and components that influence home energy use. Subsequent lessons cover topics such as:

  • attic, basement, and wall insulation
  • moisture in basements
  • choosing windows
  • deciding whether you need a new furnace
  • reducing hot water use and heating water more efficiently.

Home Assistance Program offers free home energy upgrades

Fridge on dollyYour local hydro company [Hydro One in Brockville and area] and the IESO (Independent Electricity Systems Operator) have joined together under the HOME ASSISTANCE program to help Ontario homeowners and tenants make their homes more energy efficient. The HOME ASSISTANCE Program (HAP) provides income-eligible homeowners, residents and tenants with free energy upgrades in their home. HAP helps homeowners reduce their energy bills by replacing old and inefficient equipment with new equipment that uses less electricity.

The upgrades are free and GreenSaver provides the installation at no cost to you.

Free upgrades could include:

  • Energy-saving light bulbs
  • ENERGY STAR® refrigerators
  • ENERGY STAR® freezers, dehumidifiers, window air-conditioners
  • Home insulation and draft proofing
  • Low-flow showerheads
  • Programmable thermostats
  • Powerbars
  • Faucet aerators


Metal roofing pros and cons

Mother Earth News / Cathy J. Flamholtz / March/April 1984

metal-roofing-pros-and-consLearn about these metal roofing pros and cons before repairing your roof. If properly maintained, metal roofs don’t have to be eyesores. Understand metal roofing pros and cons, and spot “tin tops” on just about every style and size of building around. For example, painted steel “shingles” on a beautiful older house.


Toronto Launches Innovative Energy Retrofit Financing Program

Ecology Ottawa / Roger Peters / 26 January 2014

Last week, the City of Toronto launched its innovative new Home Energy Loan Program (HELP). This financing program is unique in Canada in that loan payments to the City can be made over a period of up to 15 years as a special (local improvement) charge indicated on the property tax bill. There are many advantages of this approach. HELP allows homeowners to avoid the large upfront cost of home energy improvements and pay for them over time. If the property is sold before the loan is repaid, the new owner will assume the balance of the loan and continue to repay it through the property tax bill. In many cases, the loan payments will be less than the energy savings obtained, giving homeowners immediate relief on their energy bills.

The program is initially being offered in four areas of the city – Black Creek, Toronto Centre/Riverdale/Beaches, Junction/High Park, and South Scarborough. Additional areas will be added during the three year pilot. The City is also allocating $10 million of financing for multi-unit housing as part of its Tower Renewal program.

A wide cross section of Ottawa stakeholders including Ecology Ottawa has been encouraging the City of Ottawa to offer the same type of financing program to homeowners and multi-unit buildings. See the latest letter to Mayor and Council here, and also check out our Promising Practises profile of the Toronto Program. This type of program would give Ottawa residents welcome relief from high energy bills while at the same time reducing Ottawa’s carbon footprint. Because it involves a loan and not a grant, the City can recover all of its costs – truly a win-win initiative that any councillor seeking re-election this year should support.


Make Removable Interior Storm Windows

Mother Earth News / Mark Clipsham / October-November 2010

These storm windows are sure to keep the cold out this winter.Tired of your single-pane and leaky windows, but can’t afford to replace them?

Here’s an easy way to dramatically improve the performance of your windows and reduce damaging condensation without spending much money: Make removable interior storm windows using wood casing, window film, and foam tape.


City of Ottawa urged to consider Local Improvement Charges

Ecology Ottawa / Press Release / 31 October 2013

Thirty local businesses, community organizations and environmental groups wrote to Mayor Jim Watson and all Ottawa City Councillors today urging them to use Local Improvement Charges (LICs) to help homeowners save money and energy.

Benefits to the City and its taxpayers include: a) access to a voluntary financing program that will provide savings for Ottawa homeowners and businesses through lower energy bills at no cost to the city; b) creating local jobs; c) promoting Ottawa as a leader on green buildings and homes; d) allow financing obligations and benefits to be shared with new owners; and e) be City administered—lower risks and provides credibility.

“We stand ready to assist the City of Ottawa with the design and implementation of a pilot program in Ottawa,” said Trevor Haché of Ecology Ottawa.

Businesses and groups signing the letter include the Social Planning Council of Ottawa, seven community associations, Windmill Development Group, Build Green Solutions, Ecology Ottawa, Homesol Building Solutions Inc., EnviroCentre, Jonathan Ham Energy Consulting Inc, Design HVAC Experts Inc., Reliable Home Environment, Rick Ménard Heating & Cooling Ltd., RB Heating Climate Care, Ottawa Renewable Energy Co-op, iSolara Solar Power, and Ottawa Solar Power.


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The Transition Framework

Resilience is the ability of a system or community to withstand impacts from outside. An indicator is a good way of measuring that. Conventionally, the principal way of measuring a reducing carbon footprint is CO2 emissions. However, we firmly believe that cutting carbon while failing to build resilience is an insufficient response when you’re trying to address multiple shocks such as peak oil, climate change and the economic crisis together.

— Transition U.S.
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