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Opinion

Opinion

By Susan Olshuff

 

Feeling the chill in the air? Checking out the golden autumn leaves? Putting the lawn furniture away for the winter? 

As the days get shorter, we might find ourselves thinking about the coming cold months, dreading the chilly bathrooms, worrying about the increasing heating bills, and concerned about the impact on our planet from all the energy we’re using.

Are you ready for what’s coming? Is your home ready?

We know we should really do something to prepare for the coming heating season, but then again, there’s the snowblower that needs to be taken into the shop to be repaired, and the kiddie pool that needs to find its way to the back of the basement or garage, and so much more. We also know that those beautiful golden leaves will soon morph into cold snow.

You may not realize that every time you’ve paid a utility bill over the years, you have been contributing to an energy-efficiency fund that is designated to pay for Mass Save energy-efficiency services that are yours for the taking at no charge. This includes a no-cost energy assessment along with recommendations for how to make changes that will save you energy and money.

Also at no cost, you’ll receive air sealing around those leaky spots that let cold air in, as well as programmable thermostats, water-saving devices, and energy-efficient power strips. You could also receive 75% to 100% off approved insulation. And there are more opportunities, too.

The mayors of both Springfield and West Springfield have declared October to be Energy Efficiency Month. By focusing now on ‘doing the right thing,’ we can reduce our costs this winter and, at the same time, help our cities work toward their climate goals. You can sign up for your no-cost audit at masssave.com/egs.

Energy efficiency is the cheapest, quickest way to meet our energy needs, cut our bills, and reduce harmful pollution. It’s also an economic engine, amassing a U.S. workforce of nearly 2.4 million at the start of this year in manufacturing, installation, construction, and other fields — most of which can’t be outsourced overseas. Energy Efficiency Day is a collaborative effort of more than 1,000 regional and national organizations.

The the colder it gets, the more people will request this assistance, and the wait time for your home energy assessment will lengthen. So don’t wait — act now. Your wallet will thank you, as will future generations.

 

Susan Olshuff is a town liaison and researcher for ener-G-save, a program of the Harold Grinspoon Charitable Foundation LLC.

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