The Energy Chronicles

Author Archives: Admin

Energy-Efficiency & Building Energy Usage

Why is energy efficiency important?

There are many benefits to having a building that operates efficiently; the most obvious being reduced energy and operational costs.

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Iowa Association of Energy Efficiency: Scholarship

IAEE Scholarship Program Pursuing degree which supports mission of IAEE? Then check out Iowa Association for Energy Efficiency Scholarship. IAEE will award up to 2 – $1,000 scholarships to individuals.* Due by April 15, 2018. To be eligible for this scholarship, you must: Have a High School diploma or GED at the time of application Be a student pursuing a degree which supports the mission of IAEE Currently enrolled in an accredited post-secondary institution in Iowa Completed a minimum of one semester/trimester of post-secondary education Have a GPA of 2.5 or higher Committed to pursuing a career in the energy efficiency industry […]

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Easy Simple Solutions to Lower Your Heating Bill

Employee Ryan Lovan was featured on Channel 13, WHO Tv, on Tuesday January 3, 2018. He provided tips and tricks that are easy to accomplish on your own. He discussed proper ways to: insulate pipes caulk around windows how to feel for a draft through a window or door (without using technology) water heater tips and many more Would you like to put more cash into your pocket? Then the time is now, click on the link below to watch the video. You won’t regret it!   Other Tips He Has for You: Air infiltration through the attic access panel. If […]

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Easily Implemented Energy Saving Tips

Energy efficiency is a noble goal to strive for, but sometimes the realities of life (namely, money or the lack thereof) can get in the way of realizing these goals. Cindy, our manager for TEG’s Affordable Housing Program, has put together this helpful infographic that provides budget-friendly ways for you and your tenants to save energy – and money. Click on the link below to view and download the infographic. Energy Saving Tips Flyer 6.9.2017

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Going Green for St. Patrick’s Day

Wearing green is a time-honored tradition for St. Patrick’s Day – nobody wants to get pinched! But instead of wearing green for a single day, why don’t you and your colleagues incorporate GOING green into your office culture? Check out the infographic for more details on how your office can go green this holiday.  

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The Super Bowl and Energy Efficiency

Super Bowl LI is this Sunday! Whether you’re a Patriots fan or a Falcons fan, chances are you’re either holding a Super Bowl party or attending one hosted by friends or family. With so many people tuning in, you may think that energy usage spikes during this time- but in reality, it actually drops! How does this work? According to the National Center for Policy Analysis, this drop in energy use occurs precisely because of the number of people who hold or attend Super Bowl parties. Say you’re attending a watch party with seven other people. Only one TV is […]

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MidAmerican Energy to Increase Rates

In October of last year, the Iowa Utilities Board (IUB), a governmental board that regulates utilities,  approved MidAmerican Energy’s request to raise electric and gas rates.  The increase in rates will help to cover rising costs and increase revenue over three years.  The proposed increase will phase in over a three year period starting on August 15th, 2013.  Each customer would pay on average $2.73 more through 2014, $2.75 more through 2015, and $2.68 more through 2016.  These average base rates would then drop after 2017 due to the recent announcement from MidAmerican Energy, Gov. Terry Branstad, and Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds […]

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Fight “Vampire Power” with Energy Efficiency This Halloween

Did you know that all electrical appliances and equipment still draw or “suck” energy even when they are turned off, as long as they are still plugged in?  This draw of energy is called standby power, or phantom load, and most experts agree that it happens for two reasons.  One, power supply circuits and sensors receive a remote signal while plugged into the wall.  Two, circuits continue to be energized even though the appliance or equipment is turned off.  The average residential setting adds about $200 or 5 to 10% more to their average annual energy bill from products plugged […]

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TEG Acknowledged in The Simpsonian

The Simpsonian, Simpson College’s student newspaper, published an article discussing the college’s recent outdoor LED lighting project.  The Indianola college updated 200 of their outdoor lighting fixtures from 81 Watt high pressure sodium lamps to 51 Watt LED lamps.  In the article, TEG is credited for helping to secure the funds to complete the project. We were able to provide the energy analysis necessary for Simpson to apply for a State Energy Program grant as well as facilitate the selection and purchase of materials. Perks of the lighting upgrade not only include decreased utility and maintenance costs, but also a cut […]

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Small Changes in Energy Habits Could Generate Big Savings

In 2012 TEG performed a plug load anaylsis for the Hunziker & Associates Realty office in Ames, Iowa.  We caught up with Carla to learn about her experience with the energy analysis process and impacts it had in her office. She explained that the office was concerned with sustainability and that she is on a committee (Ames Sustainability Task Force) which wanted to lead by example. When Carla received her original energy assessment last year it showed that the realty office was very energy efficient and confirmed that they were on the right track, but there was a large portion […]

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Metro Waste Authority Tour

Emily and Jesse joined Chris Longer and her team from Indianola Municipal Utilities for a tour of the Metro Waste Authority landfill and Metro Hazardous Waste Drop-Off center a couple of weeks ago. The first stop on the tour was at the Metro Hazardous Waste Drop-Off.  The tour included not only what can be recycled, but how each type of hazardous waste is managed and disposed of or sometimes re-purposed.  Our personal favorite machine was a paint can crusher.  They take all oil based paint cans, crush them, and collect the excess paint to be placed in a drum and […]

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Ames Creation Care Workshop

The Energy Group attended the Ames Creation Care Workshop on June 27th.  The Ames Creation Care Group is an organization of churches in and around the Ames, Iowa area.  Mary Jean Baker, an active member within the Creation Care Group, planned to hold a round table discussion about energy efficiency in light of the announcement of upcoming rate changes by the City of Ames electric utility.  TEG was asked to participate in discussion to inform church members about energy efficiency and the importance of getting an energy assessment.  We have been working with the City of Ames for several years to […]

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Alliant Energy’s Commercial New Construction Incentive Program

Alliant Energy believes “energy-efficient buildings use less energy, cost less to operate, and impact the environment less than conventional buildings”. And we agree! To further support their message, they have developed a program to assist commercial facility owners and developers build in energy savings during the design phase on both new construction and major remodel projects. Iowa and Minnesota customers in Alliant Energy’s service territory may qualify for the Commercial New Construction Incentive Program and, if eligible to participate, customers could receive free energy design assistance by means of comprehensive energy modeling as well as design team and construction incentives. […]

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“Money For Motors” Incentive Program

Commercial and industrial customers of MidAmerican Energy that are experiencing high energy costs, poor plant efficiency, unscheduled downtime, or high maintenance costs can now take part in the new “Money for Motors” Program. All commercial and industrial customers have the opportunity to receive a bounty for replacing any existing Pre-EPAct (pre 1997) operating motors through the program.  The following is a highlight of  motor requirements. Existing motors must: Be Pre-EPAct (pre-1997) up to 500hp. Currently be in operation. Operate at a minimum of 2,000 hours Be replaced with a NEMA premium motor. (List of NEMA Premium Motors) Be environmentally recycled. For […]

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Utility Costs Tied to Mortgages in SAVE Act

Senators Michael Bennet (D-Colorado) and Johnny Isakson (R-Georgia) introduced a new bipartisan bill to Congress on October 19 titled the The SAVE (Sensible Accounting to Value Energy) Act. Drafted to include energy efficiency appraisals and energy costs into the mortgage guidelines of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, this bill aims to increase the demand for more energy efficient homes. The sought after changes to the mortgage guidelines would apply to most new home mortgages and refinancing across the United States. Home buyers will be enabled to consider operational (energy) costs when searching  for a home and would even be able […]

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TEG Mentioned in Corn and Soy Bean Digest

Edith Monroe, writer for Corn and Soybean Digest, published an article earlier this summer on the benefits of applying for a REAP (Rural Energy for America Program) Grant (1). She contacted us to get connected with an operation that had been through the process, from grant application to implementation. We caught up with Ron Heck and discussed his thoughts on REAP and the auditing process (2). Ron Heck (Perry, IA) received his energy audit from TEG two years ago to include in his REAP grant application. And as Edith puts it, he’s “already reaping from the benefits”. Our audit identified […]

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Infrared Thermography

Now is the time to get your home or business checked for insulation and window deficiencies! As the colder months approach, we are gearing up to heat our spaces and many elect for equipment tune-ups in an effort to avoid wasting money and energy. But a bigger threat to your pocket book may be lingering, – heat loss. If heat is lost, regardless of how efficient the heating system, money is wasted. Don’t underestimate the high costs associated with heat losses due to poor or failed insulation and windows! With our infrared imaging assessment, we will identify weaknesses in the […]

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