Support Solar at the Polls this Fall

Regions Solar respects the personal and political views of all. Regardless of party, we hope you will let the candidate you support know that you care about clean energy, solar energy, clean air and access to rebate programs for residential and business solar, if it is your view.

Recap of 2014 Legislative Session

Susan Glickman, Florida Director of the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy spoke at Sarasota County Government’s Sustainable Sarasota Community Partners July monthly meeting. She shared highlights from this past legislative session in Tallahassee that will concern solar and clean energy supporters.

HM 281 Keystone XL Pipeline; Urges the President of the United States to issue final approval for construction & completion of Keystone XL pipeline.

CS/SM 1174 Carbon Dioxide Emissions Guidelines; Urging Congress to direct the United States Environmental Protection Agency to use specified criteria in developing guidelines for regulating carbon dioxide emissions from existing fossil-fueled electric generating units, etc.

CS/HM 7147  Building Construction Policies; Requiring the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services to include in its annual report recommendations for energy efficiency; authorizing an employer to present certain documents electronically or physically in order to show proof and certify to the permit issuer that it has secured compensation for its employees; authorizing an agency or local government to require rooftop equipment to be installed in compliance with the Florida Building Code if the equipment is being replaced or removed during reroofing and is not in compliance with the Florida Building Code’s roof-mounted mechanical units requirements, etc.

Solar and Renewable Energy Needs Your Support

Glickman stressed the importance of Floridians showing up at the polls for this fall’s gubernatorial race and knowing their candidates stance on carbon emissions, clean energy and renewable energy.  This link underscores why people passionate about solar and renewable energy should be concerned Florida’s Energy Overview.

Ponder this:

Florida is the fourth most populous state in the nation, and our large population and above average temperatures create demand for a significant amount of energy.  We don’t have oil refineries in the State, so fossil fuels, petroleum and natural gas, are brought in by pipeline, tanker or barge.  This leaves Florida vulnerable to disruption in energy supply.  According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, renewable energy accounted for only 2.1 percent of Florida’s net electrical generation in 2012. -SACE

Southern Alliance for Clean Energy Action Fund (SACE Action Fund), the political arm of the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy (SACE), is a non-partisan, non-profit (c4) organization striving to make clean energy solutions to climate change a top priority for our region’s elected leaders. SACE Action Fund engages in public education, legislative action and electoral accountability here in the Southeast.

Again, regardless of party, we hope you will let the candidate you support know that you care about clean energy, solar energy, clean air and access to rebate programs for residential and business solar, if it is your view.

Keep Cool as Summer Heats Up

As the mercury rises, follow these measures to comfortably enjoy your home. First things first. Call your AC company to schedule your system’s checkup. Living in Florida, we all know it’s better to have the AC system checked at the beginning of the season. Who wants to be stuck without air conditioning on the hottest of days, when a checkup in the beginning of the season might have spotted and corrected a problem waiting to happen?

Air Conditioning Annual Checkup
The AC technician will check a variety of things. They’ll check the amount of refrigerant and test for refrigerant leaks. They will look for and seal duct leakage in central systems. Airflow flowing through the evaporator coil will be measured. Electrical controls, electric terminals and connections will be checked and cleaned, as well as oil motors and check belts. Next they will check the accuracy of the thermostat. You’re not done, yet. As a homeowner, you should change your filters regularly and use the energy efficient filters; the kind air easily passes through. Clogged or dirty filters also reduce a system’s efficiency. In fact,
switching from a dirty, clogged filter to a clean one can increase your unit’s efficiency 5% – 15%. Don’t forget to check the condensation drain, you know, that line that runs the collected water outside. You can run a wire through that line regularly to make sure the line doesn’t get backed up with debris. The line is important, as humidity is removed from the air and converted to water.

Check for Areas of Heat Gain
Now that you’ve checked air conditioning maintenance off the list consider what you can do inside the home to help your AC not have to work as hard to keep you cool. Stand beside one of your eastern exposure windows in the late morning or western exposure windows in the afternoon. Hot? Consider window coverings, thermal lined curtains, window film, awnings or trees and shrubbery to shade those windows. The hotter it is inside, the harder your AC is working and the more you’re paying to stay
cool.

Ah, the Wind Chill Effect
Ceiling fans make you feel up to 4⁰F cooler. Remember they don’t actually lower temperature, so conserve energy by turning them off when you leave the room. Remember simple things make a difference. Running the exhaust fan during a shower helps reduce humidity in the home. Consider air drying dishes after running the dishwasher. Skip using the oven on the hottest days. Wait until the temperature has gone down in the evening to run the clothes dryer. These tips will make it easier on your air conditioning, your wallet and you’ll keep your cool!

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