Most Americans are unaware of the impact they can have over their utility bills. Reduction in consumption is one way to decrease utility costs, but there are also many infrsatructure changes that can be made to save money on monthly bills. Many of these upgrades can be done in low cost ways, or with the help of incentives. In the long run, any upgrades you do will save you lots of money on your home’s energy bills!
In order to strive for a county with all clean, renewable energy, we first must strive to decrease our consumption via efficiency upgrades.
There are many great resources to help you with this process whether it be with loads of great information, or cash incentives for your upgrades.
Below is a comparison chart between three kinds of lighting to help you be informed about cost/energy use the next time you buy lightbulbs:
(click the links in the headings to check view each site)
“DSIRE is the most comprehensive source of information on incentives and policies that support renewables and energy efficiency in the United States. Established in 1995, DSIRE is operated by the N.C. Clean Energy Technology Center at N.C. State University and is funded by the U.S. Department of Energy.”
Energy Trust of Oregon is an independent nonprofit organization dedicated to providing utility customers with low-cost, clean energy solutions
ETO serves Oregon customers of Portland General Electric, Pacific Power and Cascade Natural Gas, and Oregon and Washington customers of NW Natural. They have been in operation since 2002 and has an excellent track record throughout the entire state. They serve residential, commercial, industry and agriculture, as well public and nonprofit entities.
Examples of services you can find on their website:
- Reference guides for their cash incentives for efficiency upgrades, renewables, weatherization, etc. Find them all here
- Assessments of your home’s energy use
- Contractors in your area that are “Trade Ally Contractors” and can assist you with receiving the incentives
- Low-Cost and No-Cost tips
- FREE Energy Saver Kits mailed directly to your house! – It is FREE and you receive products that are tailored specifically to information you input about your home
- Other FREE energy saving offers such as appliance recycling
Their motto is:
“At Expertise, we believe a healthy home goes hand-in-hand with a healthy planet. So check out our energy efficiency resources to help you tackle projects at home and support the environment.”
This site includes many different “Home Energy Guides” including Heating and Cooling, Lighting, Appliances, Windows, Water Conservation
These all include really great DIY tips as well as how to hire professionals for each of the jobs.
U.S. Department of Energy
This energy saver portion of the website has a variety of great resources. You can find all of them here
Some of the most useful include:
- “Do-it-Yourself Energy Saving Projects”to find out what improvements you can make easily on your own, click here
- Estimate your appliance and home electronic energy use here
- As well as many tips for heating/cooling your home and weatherizing it. Find them here and here (this site explains how you can do your own home energy audit!)
Energy.gov Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy
This site gives a great summary of all of the incentive programs available
This site, like The Energy Trust, is jam packed with resources.
Oregon Department of Energy
This page will connect you to all of the different income tax credits you can receive for making your home more energy efficient. These, coupled with incentives from the Energy Trust make doing upgrades in your home even more economically viable and cost effective.
A list of all the devices and or technologies that qualify can be found here