On the evening on June 2, 2014 friends, family, and supporters of solar gathered at the Poolesville Waste Water Treatment Facility in Poolesville Maryland to unveil the completed solar array. This 1.1 MW solar system is the only system installed by a municipality in Montgomery County and makes Poolesville one of the first three municipalities in Maryland to go solar with its own fully-operational source of renewable energy.
Standard Solar CEO Tony Clifford said it best, that this project is an “economic, environmental, and educational opportunity for the Town of Poolesville. It’s an economic opportunity because the cost of solar electricity being generated by this system is less than the town currently pays for conventional utility power. From an environmental standpoint the solar system allows the town to make a real contribution to the fight against global warming; and then looking at it from an educational standpoint Poolesville High School will be able to use it as a tool in their environmental science magnet program.” He stated that it’s a “win-win-win!” And this event was surely a win as well! The ribbon cutting was well attended, we had several great speakers including Jim Brown, the President of the Town of Poolesville, as well as Charles Miller the General Manager of UGI, Montgomery County Council member Ike Leggett as well as several other county elected officials. According to Poolesville’s town officials this “new energy source is expected to save the town approximately $30,000 in its first year of operation.”
As Poolesville is one of the leading small towns in the state of Maryland and the Mid-Atlantic, it comes as no surprise that town officials and residents are taking on a leadership role in solar. Tony Clifford also spoke about the benefits for the Poolesville solar system and how they related to the new Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations on coal, which President Obama spoke about earlier in the week. In fact, the 3,740 paneled system will offset about 2.4 million lbs. of carbon dioxide annually, this is the equivalent to the amount of CO2 produced when you burn 1.2 million lbs. of coal. So this system is really making a substantial contribution when you think about it.
Summer is all about spending time with family and friends, and in doing so you probably spend more money eating out, doing family activities, and just having fun! So this summer while you are having the time of your lives, there are easy ways for you to save some money and energy in your home. Here is a short list of little things you can do to make a big difference, so you can spend more time with the people you love!
First take shorter showers, seems simple, but maybe it’s not. You’re a creature of habit, you have a set list of everything you need to get done, and if you’re not sure how you can cut down on time, and not really sure you want to there’s another way. Thank goodness! You can lower the temperature of your water heater, so instead of taking steaming hot showers you can take luke-warm showers, which saves energy! According to an article on energy.gov for every 10 degree F reduction you can save anywhere from $12-$30 annually.
Added Bonus: Hot water dries out your skin, and no one wants that.
Next, raise your thermostat. We, at Standard Solar, offer programmable thermostats with our smart home solution. You can also use a ceiling fan which will move the air around, thus cooling the room. You can also place fans around your house. A well placed fan can do wonders for the home! But, if fans aren’t for you we get it. In the Maryland/DC area summers can get pretty hot; and we crave air conditioning constantly. So instead make sure you check your air filters, if they are clogged or dirty they’ll raise your energy consumption because dirt and dust hinder the flow of the air and reduce efficiency.
Appliance use can be very instrumental in saving energy this summer as well. Did you know that you should only run your appliances that give off heat at night, when it’s cool outside? So plan accordingly. Also, you should have a lot of food in your fridge. The more food you have the less your fridge has to work to remain cool when it is opened. According to NBC cold things keep other things cold, and a well-stocked fridge can regulate temperature. That one I really didn’t know!
And finally, energy efficient window treatments are a good way to save energy; these include things like awnings, blinds, drapes, etc. These “window treatments” can be adjusted to control the amount of light that is let in and they can also help with ventilation. With regards to draperies, you should opt for medium colors and a white backing. So for summer skip the pastels and the darker colors. Think about your home for a second, when was the last time you completed an energy audit? It may be a good idea to do that now.
We hope these tips helps you save some energy and money this summer. Let’s make this summer the best summer!
Check out how much carbon emissions electronics!
One of our posters hung in our conference rooms and lunch room.
Did you know that by opting for reusable bottles instead of purchasing bottled water, you can save up to $81,678.24 a year?
We are proud to announce that Standard Solar is now a Montgomery County Certified Green Business! As a service provider of green energy solutions, it was important for us to implement sustainability practices throughout all areas of our business so that we were operating in a manner that demonstrates our commitment to environmental stewardship.
Our team is so excited about this accomplishment and we wanted to pass along a few of the practices that we have implemented within our office that you can also consider
for your business:
Waste Reduction and Recycling
Much of what is thrown away in an office can be recycled including:
- Co-mingled plastic and metals
- Turn off lights and projectors in rooms not in use and use sleep modes on
Environmentally Responsible Purchasing
- Support other green vendors Take steps to support your community
–we adopted a section of Gaither Road! This helps keep our community
clean and helps the Chesapeake Bay watershed
- Offer Commuter Options and transit incentives to employees
- Use water coolers rather than bottles of water, give employees
reusable bottles to encourage use in the work
These are just a few areas in which we have improved our sustainability in the
office. Our Sustainability committee meets monthly to discuss and review our
ongoing efforts and brainstorm other projects and areas of improvement. We
would like to encourage other businesses to follow in our footsteps and work to
become green certified themselves.
These small steps we took serve as a good example of how easy it is to get started!