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Rethink Energy: Last Solar + EV Charging Info Session of 2018

This regularly-scheduled sponsored column is written by the Arlington Initiative to Rethink Energy team (AIRE). This county program helps you make smart energy decisions that save you money and leaves a lighter footprint on the environment.

October 17 will be the final info session of the year for the Arlington Solar + Electric Vehicle Charging Co-op.

Solar systems cost less than half of what they did just five years ago and you can make use of the 30% federal tax credit in addition to the co-op discount. Solar panels are becoming increasingly common place in Arlington. Over 100 residents have purchased panels through co-ops like this.

The deadline to join the co-op is October 31. You’ll be able to purchase solar and/or an electric vehicle charger through the co-op at a discount. You’ll also have the support of experts to guide you through the process.

Attend the upcoming information session to learn more on October 17 at 7 p.m. in the Navy League Building 2300 Wilson Blvd. — RSVP here.

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Rethink Energy: Free Energy Saving Kit

This regularly-scheduled sponsored column is written by the Arlington Initiative to Rethink Energy team (AIRE). This county program helps you make smart energy decisions that save you money and leaves a lighter footprint on the environment.

When we spot a great opportunity for Arlingtonians to save energy, we share it.

Washington Gas has an Online Home Energy Profile tool. The tool will give you an energy ranking, savings estimate and upgrade recommendations that make the most sense for your home. It takes less than five minutes.

Above all, if you are a Washington Gas customer, you can submit your address and have a FREE energy conservation kit sent to your home.

Free Energy Kits Include:

  • A high-efficiency showerhead
  • A bathroom faucet aerator
  • Door sweep weather stripping
  • Roll closed cell foam weather strip

Sealing air leaks, lowering water and sewer bills and reducing the amount of hot water used at home for free is a no brainer. Don’t delay, get yours before they run out!

Washington Gas Online Home Energy Profile Tool

FREE Energy Conservation Kit

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Rethink Energy: No-Cost Weatherization for Income and Age Qualifying Home Energy Improvements

This regularly-scheduled sponsored column is written by the Arlington Initiative to Rethink Energy team (AIRE). This county program helps you make smart energy decisions that save you money and leaves a lighter footprint on the environment.

High utility bills disproportionately impact those with lower incomes. On average, low-income households pay 7.2 percent of their income on utilities — more than three times the amount that higher income households pay (2.3 percent).

Families struggling to pay energy bills may sacrifice nutrition, medicine and other necessities, which compound the effects of inequality. Energy efficiency can make a noticeable difference.

The Income and Age-Qualifying Home Improvement program provides in-home energy assessments and installation of select energy-saving products. Single-family homes and multi-family homes (apartments or condos) all qualify.

To help save on energy costs, qualifying Dominion Energy customers can receive a free energy assessment and free energy-saving measures that may include:

  • ENERGY STAR® qualified LED light bulbs
  • Efficient, low-flow showerheads
  • Efficient, low-flow faucet aerators
  • Pipe wrap insulation for hot water pipes
  • Attic insulation and air sealing

Eligible applicants must meet ONE of the following criteria:

  • Household income is less than 60% of the state median income
  • Household income is less than 120% of the state median income for residents over 60 years of age

These retrofits can make a big difference to some families, so please share this information.

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Rethink Energy: AIRE at the Fair

This regularly-scheduled sponsored column is written by the Arlington Initiative to Rethink Energy team (AIRE). This county program helps you make smart energy decisions that save you money and leaves a lighter footprint on the environment.

The County Fair is only a few days away. Get excited!

Stop by and see us at the Rethink Energy booth. We’ll be there to answer your energy questions about saving energy at home, solar power, weatherization and more.

When you stop into the Thomas Jefferson gymnasium, take note; LED lights shine brightly from above. These LED lights save about $40,000 annually and have a payback of less than 4 years.

The use of LED lights isn’t the only way that the Fair is working to be more sustainable. Kudos to the Fair for all the small actions that continue to make a big difference. Here is what you can expect at the Fair to leave a lighter footprint on the environment:

  • Providing a water fill up station to encourage guests to use reusable water bottles.
  • Banning all single-use plastic straws and replacing them with compostable options or strawless cups.
  • Banning Styrofoam© food service items such as cups and clamshell containers distributed at the fair.
  • Banning small condiment packets for mustard, ketchup and soy sauce, as well as small plastic Solo© cups for sauces. Vendors must use bulk distribution in paper cups for these items.
  • Recycling all recyclable materials in a single-stream recycling system, including paper, cardboard, glass, aluminum and plastic materials.
  • Expanding composting throughout the fair. This removes food waste, paper products and other biodegradable items out of the event waste stream, reducing greenhouse gas emissions resulting from waste generated at the fair.
  • Collecting food vendor grease that is taken to a plant for rendering. 40% of the processed grease is use to create biofuel.
  • Collecting and distributing manure generated by livestock at the fair for use in neighborhood gardens.
  • Working with Arlington’s Car-Free Diet to promote transportation options to the fair, including biking and walking routes, nearby bike-share locations, bus and Metro options.
  • Providing valet parking for bicycles free of charge for guests who bike to the event.
  • Providing shuttle service for fair attendees from nearby parking facilities and Metro stops.
  • Using reusable signage throughout the fair to minimize printed signage waste.

We look forward to seeing you at the Fair. Please stop by with your energy questions!

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Rethink Energy: Thank You Commissioners — New Applicants Welcome

This regularly-scheduled sponsored column is written by the Arlington Initiative to Rethink Energy team (AIRE). This county program helps you make smart energy decisions that save you money and leaves a lighter footprint on the environment.

Civic engagement is at the heart of Arlington.

Arlington County government relies on the hard work of its many civic-minded volunteers. More than 50 County Commissions and Advisory groups advise the County Board on decisions that affect and benefit our community.

We don’t say it enough, but we really mean it — THANK YOU to each commissioner for your service, especially to those with whom we work closely on the Environment and Energy Conservation Commission.

The Environment and Energy Conservation Commission — often abbreviated E2C2 — advises the County Board on energy and environmental matters. Openings on the Commission occur annually and we welcome you to take attend a meeting and apply online.

Diverse voices from various professional backgrounds, walks of life and neighborhoods are all needed to represent Arlington. Are you interested in energy and the environment Are you looking for a way to get involved in your community? This may be just the opportunity you are looking for.

There are several other commissions with openings, too. Visit the County’s Commission page to learn more and apply.

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Rethink Energy: Declare Independence From High Energy Bills

This regularly-scheduled sponsored column is written by the Arlington Initiative to Rethink Energy team (AIRE). This county program helps you make smart energy decisions that save you money and leaves a lighter footprint on the environment.

Arlingtonians have more options than ever to declare their independence from high energy use this summer, and to save money all year. The July 4 holiday is a great time to relax, reflect and rethink.

Mark your calendar now for the upcoming Solar Co-op + EV Charger info session on July 11. To date, more than 120 Arlington families have installed solar with the Arlington Solar Co-op.

Here are a few of our previous posts that will save you money:

Enjoy the holiday, stay safe, and mark your calendar to join us for the upcoming Solar info session on July 11!

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Rethink Energy: Green Home & Garden Tour — June 3

This regularly-scheduled sponsored column is written by the Arlington Initiative to Rethink Energy team (AIRE). This county program helps you make smart energy decisions that save you money and leaves a lighter footprint on the environment.

Spring is the home improvement season.

Mark your calendar for the 2018 Green Home & Garden Tour to get inspiration from some of Arlington’s most beautiful and environmentally-friendly homes and gardens.

The tour is sponsored by Arlington County’s Office of Sustainability and Environmental Management, EcoAction Arlington and the Virginia Cooperative Extension.

Many of these homes have participated in Arlington’s Green Home Choice, StormwaterWise and Solar Co-op programs. This tour also features a rooftop vegetable garden, a Community Garden, and a sustainable landscape management resource.

Homeowners, designers and builders will be available during the tour to share their green construction and landscaping experiences. Twelve sites will be showcased on this year’s tour.

What: The 16th Annual Green Home and Garden Tour

When: June 3, 1-5 p.m. rain or shine

Where: Various sites throughout the County. In-person registration will be available from 12:30-4 p.m. at the Walter Reed Community Center (2909 16th St S. Arlington)

For more information and to register, please visit: EcoActionArlington.org.

A $5 entrance fee will support EcoAction Arlington’s conservation efforts.

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Rethink Energy: Free Shade Trees Planted for You — June 11 Deadline

This regularly-scheduled sponsored column is written by the Arlington Initiative to Rethink Energy team (AIRE). This county program helps you make smart energy decisions that save you money and leaves a lighter footprint on the environment. 

Arlingtonians are passionate about their trees and many are concerned about our tree canopy. We are, too!

Trees help our community in myriad ways. They keep us cool and shaded, soak up stormwater, support local wildlife and much more.

We aren’t going out on a limb when we say there is a direct connection between trees and energy. Planting the right trees in the right places can keep your house and community cooler in the summer and reduce your energy bills. Trees cast shade on buildings and pavement, lowering the temperatures and reducing the need for electricity to cool buildings during the summer.

Get a free shade tree planted in your yard without lifting a finger!

In 2009 the Tree Canopy Fund (TCF), was launched after Arlington County Board approval in 2007 with the goals of arresting the decline and restoring and increasing the County’s tree cover over time.

Administered by EcoAction Arlington and the Arlington County Urban Forestry Commission (UFC), the fund provides grants to individuals and community groups to plant trees on private property. More than 1,200 trees have been planted since the program started!

Click to learn more about the trees available and to fill out the application.

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Rethink Energy: Two Events this Week, Two Ways to Save Energy

This regularly-scheduled sponsored column is written by the Arlington Initiative to Rethink Energy team (AIRE). This county program helps you make smart energy decisions that save you money and leaves a lighter footprint on the environment. This post focuses on the Arlington Solar + EV Charging Co-op, currently open for Arlington and other Northern Virginia residents interested in purchasing solar or an electric vehicle charger at a discount.  Have a question? Email us at [email protected]!

The solar cooperative movement has grown far and wide, creating sustainable enterprises that generate jobs and strengthen local economies. In Virginia, there are more solar jobs than coal jobs. Arlington is #1 for solar jobs among all counties in Virginia.

To date, more than 120 Arlington families have installed solar with the Arlington Solar Co-op.

Have you thought of going solar or purchasing an electric vehicle (EV)? Maybe you already bought an EV but don’t have a great place to charge it.

For a limited time, you can purchase a solar system or an electric vehicle charger for your home at a discount through the Arlington Solar + EV Charging Co-op.

The Co-op is holding two events this week for folks interested in joining or learning more:

  1. Informal Solar Celebration and Kickoff
    Tuesday, May 1 from 6:30-8:30 p.m.
    Arlington Rooftop Bar & Grill,  2424 Wilson Blvd.
    RSVP here to chat about solar, EV’s or simply to celebrate the solar movement!
  2. Solar + EV Charging Co-op Information Session
    Wednesday, May 2 at 6:30 p.m.
    Navy League Building, 2300 Wilson Blvd.
    RSVP here to learn how solar systems, electric vehicle charging stations, and the co-op concept works, and get your questions answered.

You don’t need to attend an event to participate in the group. Simply visit the website and click “Join Our Co-op”.

We hope to see you there!

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Rethink Energy: Earth Day

This regularly-scheduled sponsored column is written by the Arlington Initiative to Rethink Energy team (AIRE). This county program helps you make smart energy decisions that save you money and leaves a lighter footprint on the environment.   

Would you believe that energy and water use in Arlington has actually decreased in the past decade?!

This is despite 22,000 new residents and 20 million additional square feet of office and residential space in Arlington since 2007. Through smart planning and valuing sustainability, Arlington is demonstrating that growth can come without further impacting the environment.  

The LEED for Communities Platinum certification is validation that Arlington residents, businesses and government are committed to the community’s long-term economic, environmental and social sustainability.

Residents continue to lead on environmental-related actions. You can join the Arlingtonians that have already installed solar, completed a home retrofit project, or certified their green home. Learn more in the links below.

Managing growth is not a destination but a journey — one that Arlington County and Arlingtonians are committed to daily.

Learn more: https://environment.arlingtonva.us/earthday/

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Rethink Energy: New Arlington Solar + Electric Vehicle Charging Co-op

This regularly-scheduled sponsored column is written by the Arlington Initiative to Rethink Energy team (AIRE). This county program helps you make smart energy decisions that save you money and leaves a lighter footprint on the environment.  This post focuses on the Arlington Solar + EV Charging Co-op, currently open for Arlington and other Northern Virginia residents interested in purchasing solar or an electric vehicle charger at a discount. Got a question? Email us at [email protected]

Installing solar or purchasing an electric vehicle are both great ways to slash your carbon footprint and energy bill. But like any major purchase it’s hard to know if you’re getting a good price or what questions to ask.

If that sounds like your experience, you’re in luck! For a limited time, you can purchase a solar system or an electric vehicle charger for your home at a discount through the Arlington Solar + EV Charging Co-op. You’ll also have the support of experts to guide you through the process.

Solar systems cost less than half of what they would have just five years ago and you can make use of the 30% federal tax credit in addition to the co-op discount. Solar panels are becoming increasingly common place in Arlington. Over 100 residents have purchased panels through co-ops like these and a Solar Foundation study found Arlington was home to more solar jobs than any other county in the state.

Get started by providing some basic information on the website. Folks interested in solar will receive a no-obligation roof screening.

Attend the upcoming information session to learn more on May 2 at 6:30 pm in the Navy League building 2300 Wilson Blvd, Arlington, VA — RSVP here.

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Rethink Energy: Home Show & Garden Expo on April 14

This regularly-scheduled sponsored column is written by the Arlington Initiative to Rethink Energy team (AIRE). This county program helps you make smart energy decisions that save you money and leaves a lighter footprint on the environment. 

Home renovations are almost a rite of passage in Arlington. Well, there’s no better way to get started on your home project than visiting Arlington’s Home Show and Garden Expo.

Arlington’s largest Home Show & Garden Expo will return this month on April 14.

The Home Show will feature dozens of home builders, contractors, vendors, architects, inspectors, real estate agents, gardeners, lenders and nonprofits, as well as housing, zoning and inspection representatives from Arlington County.

Classes and seminars at the Home Show cover many topics including:

  • Green kitchen and bath remodeling
  • Move or remodel? Which is right for me?
  • How to choose and work with contractors
  • How to finance your remodeling project
  • Green remodeling, solar co-op, green home certification
  • Downsizing and aging in place
  • Edible landscaping and home gardening
  • Energy smart landscaping lighting solutions

Stop by and check it out. Arlington’s Rethink Energy team will be there all day. We’ll have info on LED lighting, home energy rebates, green home renovation or new construction, solar co-op and more.

Stop by with your energy questions. We’re here to help you save energy and money.

The Expo is being held from 10:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m. on Saturday, April 14, at the Kenmore Middle School, 200 S. Carling Springs Road.

For more info, visit: http://arlingtonhomeshow.org/

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Rethink Energy: Home Show & Garden Expo on April 14

This regularly-scheduled sponsored column is written by the Arlington Initiative to Rethink Energy team (AIRE). This county program helps you make smart energy decisions that save you money and leaves a lighter footprint on the environment. 

Home renovations are almost a rite of passage in Arlington. Well, there’s no better way to get started on your home project than visiting Arlington’s Home Show and Garden Expo.

Arlington’s largest Home Show & Garden Expo will return this month on April 14.

The Home Show will feature dozens of home builders, contractors, vendors, architects, inspectors, real estate agents, gardeners, lenders and nonprofits, as well as housing, zoning and inspection representatives from Arlington County.

Classes and seminars at the Home Show cover many topics including:

  • Green kitchen and bath remodeling
  • Move or remodel? Which is right for me?
  • How to choose and work with contractors
  • How to finance your remodeling project
  • Green remodeling, solar co-op, green home certification
  • Downsizing and aging in place
  • Edible landscaping and home gardening
  • Energy smart landscaping lighting solutions

Stop by and check it out. Arlington’s Rethink Energy team will be there all day. We’ll have info on LED lighting, home energy rebates, green home renovation or new construction, solar co-op and more.

Stop by with your energy questions. We’re here to help you save energy and money.

The Expo is being held from 10:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m. on Saturday, April 14, at the Kenmore Middle School, 200 S. Carling Springs Road.

For more info, visit: http://arlingtonhomeshow.org/

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Rethink Energy: New Lunar Panel Co-op

This regularly-scheduled sponsored column is written by the Arlington Initiative to Rethink Energy team (AIRE). This county program helps you make smart energy decisions that save you money and leaves a lighter footprint on the environment. 

Arlingtonians are often on the leading edge of emerging technologies and trends. Early adopters, so to speak.

Starting this spring we are excited to announce the launch of our new Lunar Power Co-op. Previously, solar panels were only able to harness the power of the sun, meaning moon light was being wasted.

Now, new solar panel technology that incorporates solar capture and lunar capture technology will be able to capture sun AND moonlight. That’s right, you can now power your home at night with lunar energy. These panels will be 137% more efficient than any other panels on the market. We’re pretty excited and we think you will be too.

Kidding aside, happy April Fools! Our real solar co-op launches today! We’ll be posting more info as this 4th co-op round is rolled out over the next week.

To be notified about upcoming co-op info sessions and receive more info, please email: [email protected].

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Rethink Energy: 65 Certified Green Home Projects Recognized

This regularly-scheduled sponsored column is written by the Arlington Initiative to Rethink Energy team (AIRE). This county program helps you make smart energy decisions that save you money and leaves a lighter footprint on the environment. 

More than 320 Arlingtonians have used Green Home Choice to help make their homes energy efficient, healthy and comfortable. 

Green Home Choice is a County program that offers free sustainability consulting and certification for renovation projects and new home construction.

This year the County honored the homeowners, architects and builders of 65 Green Home Choice certified homes. Green Home Choice projects go beyond creating just an energy efficient home. They include water efficiency, indoor air quality, waste reduction, stormwater management, tree and site preservation and more.

Homeowners living in new Green Home Choice homes save about $1,600 per year on their utility bills compared to other Arlington homes of the same size. Green Home Choice renovation projects save approximately $600 per year.

CONGRATULATIONS to all of the new projects that achieved Green Home Choice certification. Thank you for helping to build a more sustainable Arlington one project at a time!

Are you planning to renovate or build a new home or renovate your kitchen or bath in Arlington?

Visit www.greenhomechoice.us for a full list of builders, architects and other Green Home Choice service providers.

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