Monday, June 30, 2008

Fast track your energy improvements!

In an effort to encourage you to get moving on any energy projects that may be on your mind, I offer you two short stories:

1) As I've been making calls in relation to setting up an energy forum, I spoke with a representative from the Northeast Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association ( While I was on the phone chatting, I asked how sales were doing with gas / wood stoves. She told me that she had just spoken with one of her members who had 30 customers in his store. So I asked how many customers would normally be in that store... she said that member would normally get 30 customers in a month.

2) Tonight, Dave Ljungquist of the
CT Clean Energy Fund explained to the Energy Commission that due to the impending expiration of federal tax credits, most photovoltaics (solar panels) have already been purchased in an attempt to capitalize on those federal tax credits (which I believe require installation of the PVs by December 31, 2008).

So when I look at both the gas stoves and PVs, I start to see a pattern in which there are two major bottlenecks forming that could delay your energy improvements:

a) installation/service shortage
b) product shortage

Whether it's a new product (stove, PV, etc.) or an efficiency product (insulation) that you're considering... with fuel prices apparently heading even higher... you probably ought to get started on those energy improvement projects ASAP, especially if you're considering hiring a contractor. Otherwise, if you wait until September, it may be too late to do anything until next spring.

And perhaps the easiest way to save money on energy is to begin buying competitively priced electricity. For more info on what's available, go to

Tim White

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