High Energy Homes Help

May 8, 2012

Good moos! Acterra, the Palo Alto-based nonprofit environmental group that has been conducting energy audits in Woodside and surrounding cow-munities, has come out with a new program to help keep your energy bills down.

Living in Woodside has many benefits, but it has its drawbacks, as well. Many of our homes in Town use a lot of energy to keep warm in winter and cool in summer. While a four-bedroom home is never going to use the same energy as a one-bedroom bungalow, the fact is a lot of our homes here in Woodside are simply not energy efficient and just plain waste energy!

So Acterra has come up with a solution. In addition to the in-home energy audits the group has been conducting, they’ve now come up with an innovative software system that you can work with at home to identify your own energy weak spots. The High Energy Homes program is specifically designed to examine the energy use of large homes.

The program requires that you have a SmartMeter and that you’ve lived in your dwelling for more than twelve months. It takes data from your SmartMeter and analyzes it into these categories: “base loads, variable loads, winter heating and summer cooling.”

And with the weird weather we’ve been having, with such a warm winter, while our heating bills may have been low this year, we can anticipate our summer a/c bills may be out of sight!

The program ferrets out what they call “energy leaks” and then provides specific, low-cost fixes to stop the problem. Acterra staff is available to give confidential help with any concerns or problems with the program.

Acterra is an environmental nonprofit that was formed in 2000 from the joining of two other older environmental groups with a history dating back to 1970. Along with programs to reduce energy use, the nonprofit has been involved with work to restore creeks, train citizens to be environmental stewards, grow native plants for use in restoration projects, offer awards to local business who are doing a good job environmentally, and other projects as well.

If you’re interested (and who wouldn’t be?), check it out at the Acterra website here. The program is funded by a State grant from the California Energy Commission and is free to use to residents of Woodside, Portola Valley, Atherton, and similar cow-munities. Check out if you qualify and even if you don’t now you can get on the waiting list for when you do, so get mooo-ving!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *