How a Town Became More Energy Efficient

by | Aug 6, 2013 | Business and Economy

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Energy efficiency is a very attainable idea for most people. With a little thought and effort, everyone can use less energy or put the energy they do us to better use. While each individual can have an impact, bigger companies and corporations can have a bigger impact. Some states have taken steps to make energy efficiency mandatory, such as the Stretch code Hopkinton MA.

Massachusetts has been a leader in the ideas of reduce, reuse and recycle. Hopkinton the first town to take a massive step by adding solar panels to their municipal buildings. They installed 1,800 panels on four of their structures as part of an energy-conservation plan. The International Energy Conservation Code, or the IECC Energy Code is a building code that has been adopted by states and municipal governments in the U.S. in order to establish minimalist design and construction requirements for energy efficiency. Energy efficiency is defined as using less energy to do the same work. Energy efficiency is not the same as energy conservation. Energy conservation is reducing the amount of energy used.

The Stretch code is an addition to the state’s building regulations as related to construction projects. The new code establishes a higher energy efficiency standard. It adds around $3,000 to the cost of building a single-family home, but also provides an average of $400 savings in energy bills, rebates and tax credits. This type of initiative has a higher cost on the front end with implementation but moving forward, the cost savings is massive and the benefits eventually become cost free. In addition to the Stretch Code, Hopkinton is also expediting permitting for alternative energy companies and moving to a fuel-efficient municipal fleet. It can be important for communities do to as Hopkinton did and take stock of the energy they are currently using and identify the ways they can both conserve and become more efficient. Benefits and grants offered by the federal government can make such actions more affordable and actionable in most areas.

These types of initiatives are what the environment needs to restore a balance. By  increasing energy efficiency, we can make the energy we do have last longer.

The specialists team of Home Energy Raters LLC has the years of experience on construction contracting and has thousands of infrared thermal inspections completed on a wide variety of buildings throughout New England.