Reduce your Energy Use/Cost...Without Compromising Comfort!
Below are some tips on what you can do:
Get an Assist from Mother Nature
Reduce Heat and Humidity Sources in the House on Hot Days
Improve Air Conditioner Management
Unlock $ With Sustainable Energy Investments
• Replace out-dated air conditioners with air source heat pumps
• Install a full-house attic fan and use cool evening air instead of air conditioning
• Install a lighter colored roof and paint the house a lighter color that will reflect rather than absorb the warmth of the sun’s rays
• Plant deciduous shade trees to block summer sun and provide cooling
• Install awnings, shutters or trellises on the sunny side of the house
• Better insulate the attic
Olin College of Engineering and Sustainable Wellesley’s Tiny High Performing Home Wins Chairman's Award During Wellesley’s Annual Parade
Thanks to the design and construction skills of Olin College of Engineering students Suki Sacks and Daniel Jaramillo, Sustainable Wellesley’s tiny high performing house took home the Chairman’s Award at the Town of Wellesley’s 54th Annual Veterans Parade on Sunday, May 22, 2022.
In March, Suki and Daniel met with us to scope out the building project. The first year Electrical Engineering major and first year Mechanical Engineering major went on to plan and build the home at Olin’s campus with tools on loan from the library and school machine shop with funds donated to support Sustainable Wellesley's efforts. Once the house was built, the Sustainable Wellesley team added some home-like touches and signage.
Since 63% of Wellesley's emissions come from buildings, this project aimed to educate and encourage residents to take actions that will make their homes more comfortable, less expensive to heat and cool, while helping the Town of Wellesley meet its goal to become Net Zero by 2050.
Although Suki had returned home to visit family before beginning her internship at VEIR, Daniel was in town for his internship at BAE Systems and decided to join in the parade.
“Helping Wellesley’s citizens understand the urgency of climate action within their own homes seemed even more pressing with temperatures in the high 90s during the parade,” said Daniel Jaramillo. “The worsening climate affects everyone’s health, resulting in dehydration, heat stroke, asthma, heart disease, Lyme disease, longer allergy seasons, eco anxiety, and much more,” Jaramillo said.
“We took on this project for the design challenge but also the concern for significant extreme weather impacts that communities face, including wildfires, droughts, floods and more intense hurricane seasons. Creating this house to educate the local community was one way we felt like we could ‘do something’, and we had a lot of fun working on it together!” said Sacks.
The Olin students generously volunteered their time during finals, amid COVID challenges and during dorm move out. This successful student/community collaboration earned the float the “Chairman's Award” during the Veterans Parade that honored Wellesley residents who are recipients of the Purple Heart.
Photo credits: Eric Roth Photography
Learn the Benefits of Healthy, High Performing Homes
Watch recording here
Are you considering renovating or building a new home? Here is the recording from our event where local design experts discussed healthy, high performing homes that offer value, comfort, and a way to reduce your emissions.
Topics covered in the webinar include:
Retaining the Character of Existing Homes
Rachel White, CEO of Byggmeister, a design/build firm, shared 2-3 renovation/retrofit case studies and how they offered significant opportunities to reduce a home’s carbon footprint while improving comfort.
Architect Says: “Designing Net Zero Homes Is A No Brainer”
Stephanie Horowitz, Managing Director of ZeroEnergy Design, showed a variety of homes, both new construction and major renovations, that offer exceptional energy performance.
Building New High Performing Homes
Nick Falkoff, Owner and General Manager of Auburndale Builders, spoke about adjacent cities/towns that are working toward better building practices town-wide, and about effective citizen advocacy.
This virtual event supports the Town of Wellesley’s newly launched Climate Action Plan (CAP) which maps out goals and actions residents can take to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in our community. As the CAP outlines, in 2020 63.6% of Wellesley’s emissions came from our buildings. By considering and implementing healthy home building practices, residents can help the Town achieve our goals of transitioning away from fossil fuels and achieving net-zero emissions by the year 2050.
CREATING A MORE ENERGY-EFFICIENT HOME:
PERSONAL STORIES from Weston, Wayland and Lincoln residents
November 16, 7:00 p.m. via Zoom
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, more than half of a home’s energy
bill is spent on heating and cooling. A well-insulated home is a surefire way to
help keep your power bill manageable in both winter and summer (if you have
air conditioning). Once a home is insulated, the benefits of other energy-saving
investments, like new heating and cooling systems, grow. And an energy efficient home is not only better for your pocketbook, it’s better for the
Three local residents will tell us about their own efforts to drive down fossil fuel
consumption and decarbonize their homes and properties. In each case they
took a systems approach by making several improvements to their houses such
that both their overall CO2 production and energy costs went down.
Register here to hear personal stories from:
Bill Churchill, Lincoln
Sarah Maas Scheuplein, Weston
Roger Wiegand, Wayland
This event is brought to us by MetroWest Climate Solutions. This is a growing partnership between First Parish in Wayland, First Parish Church in Weston, First Parish in Lincoln, the Congregational Church of Weston, Sustainable Weston Action Group, and other communities and individuals. Their mission is to share strategies for moving towards a low- and no-carbon-based society and economy and to suggest activities that enable individuals to help bring about solutions. For more information, visit: www.metrowestclimatesolutions.org.
Opportunities to Reduce Your Home's Fossil Fuels useage - Listen In FOR YOUR CHILDREN'S SAKE Tomorrow 7-8pm
Tomorrow from 7-8pm you are invited to be part of a six-part series on Home Electrification where homeowners can take steps to get their homes off of fossil fuels through electrification.
This is important as 56% of Wellesley's greenhouse gas comes from buildings and of that 58% of that is residential.
Kate Stephenson, HELM Construction Solutions and Aaron Gunderson, Passive House Massachusetts will lead us through how to assess opportunities for electrification, and calculate your home’s annual energy use.
This event is free and open to the public via Zoom. Register here.
There are many ways to reduce the impact of your events this season. Thank you Wellesley Green Schools for this helpful Smart Event Guide!
Did you know that 56% of emissions in Wellesley come from our buildings, and more than 50% of those building emissions come from our homes?
How can we change that?
Get inspired by Sarah Dooling, Executive Director of the Mass Climate Action Network, at her "Better Buildings, Healthy Communities" presentation on November 19th at 7pm. Register here. There are many opportunities for Wellesley residents to moving off of gas and move towards electrification which has numerous benefits including:
Let us know how you have, or plan to transform your building from a polluter to a healthy and environmental protector. The best way to do that is switch out fossil fuel heating sources. Thus if you, neighbor, friend, work colleague or family member is considering replacing/buying a heater, have them come to this event and/or call the Wellesley's Municipal Light Plant to learn about their Clean Comfort air source heat pump and other incentives initaitves.
Concerned About the Efficiency of Your Water Heater?
Sustainable Wellesley has teamed up with HomeWorks Energy to help spread the word about no-cost virtual Home Energy Assessments and the importance of energy efficiency in all seasons.
Water heaters decrease in efficiency as they age. Upgrading an old water heater to a more energy-efficient unit can help save money on energy use and lower your carbon footprint.
Schedule a no-cost Home Energy Assessment today to unlock access to professional advice from a Home Energy Specialist about your hot water tank. Ask about the Mass Save® HEAT Loan, a 0% interest rate loan for up to 7 years, that can be used to help finance new heating systems. The sponsors of the Mass Save program also offer generous rebates for qualified water heaters!
Schedule your Home Energy Assessment here, and for every performed Assessment, HomeWorks Energy will support Sustainable Wellesley with a donation. Save money and support us at the same time by signing up today!
Sustainable Wellesley has teamed up with HomeWorks Energy to help spread the word about no-cost virtual Home Energy Assessments.
Eligible Massachusetts residents who sign up for a Home Energy Assessment get a custom home energy report and access to the Mass Save® HEAT Loan, 100% off air sealing, and 75-100% off approved insulation.
Your home may qualify for same-day instant savings measures like: