Eco Village Lincoln NE
Corporate Architecture & Design
Lessons from an Eco-Village
You don't have to live in an eco-village to have a green, energy-efficient home. Improving your home's energy efficiency is often a matter of changing the way you live, and not even all that drastically.
Energy efficiency is right at our fingertips, says Ted Montgomery of the Ten Stones community in Charlotte, Vt. Your hands turn on the hot-water faucets, turn on the lights, decide whether or not to let your car idle for 10 minutes to warm up, he points out. Things like that are right at your fingertips. It's mostly behavioral.
In addition, he notes, the measures we can take to reduce our impact on the environment also cut costs. Sharing things like lawn mowers -- which we do" are efficient-resource activities. When you're talking about your own home, there is the standard list: Watch the infiltration, tighten up all of the places where air gets in, look at your thermal envelope and keep your heating equipment up to date. Look at the way you consume your hot water, and consider turning down the temperature of your water heater. If you aren't using compact fluorescents, you should be.
Pay attention to your energy intake" and spend a little more in the beginning -- and the experts say you will save in the end.In the long run, it's not more expensive, Montgomery says. Energy efficiency is less expensive in the long run. It's a matter of being clever about how you do it.