Southeast Green - Business depends on the environment and the environment depends on business

The Blower Door Test

Want to reduce your energy bill by up to 40%? Start with a blower door. The first step in any home efficiency project is finding and fixing any leaks. Why spend money on a super efficient air conditioning system only to blow cold air out the gaps. The first step to fixing a leaky house is having an assessment done and there are specialized companies to assist you. In some parts of the country, power companies offer their customers free or reduced cost assessments, with the goal of building greater efficiency across their system. Joe Thomas of Renewal Systems Solutions came out to run a few diagnostics on my home and educate me about the process. Whole house assessments include multiple tests, the blower door test being one of them. Watch this video to see how the test is done.

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Serving Up The Green Juice

It didn't seem right to show GreenShortz videos in the Eco Village at the Dogwood Festival and actually burn electricity. So I called my good friend Marvia Austin at SuperGreen Solutions in Alpharetta and borrowed a 90-watt foldable solar panel. I placed the panel in a patch of sun and connected it to a deep cycle marine battery. The battery was wired out to 400-watt inverter, which switched the DC solar power to AC and delivered it to the TV. We started out with a full battery, and his set-up powered the video feed for the six-hour event, as the solar panel charged the battery while the TV drew upon its stored energy. The stand alone panel we used also comes as a turn-key unit with the battery and inverter built in and a set of wheels to roll it into the sun.

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Call in the Blaster

You live in a holy place...we all do. Holey is more like it. The shocking truth is that your home could be losing 30-50% of its conditioned air to leaky ducts. We don't recognize the problem, because our HVAC systems work overtime to keep the interior of our homes confortable...and that overtime means higher energy bills and wasted money. To add to the bad, leaky return ducts pull in bad air, from crawl spaces and attics...polluting indoor air. That is the main reason we must dust our homes week after week. In this companion to the Blower Door Test video, Joe Thomas of Renewal Systems Solutions (Atlanta Residents: schedule an assessment), conducts a Duct Blaster diagnostic test on my home...and the results were not pretty. According to the test the ducts in my house were 70% leaky. Ouch! I also show Joe where I thought I might have an issue and was shocked by just how bad it was. Getting a home energy assessment is a great way to determine how your energy dollars are being spent and perhaps wasted. Fixing the leaks is an important first step toward a more energy efficient home...it is also an easy way to be green. Thanks for watching. Please share!

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Green Apple Day of Service

The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) is well known for its LEED building efficiency certification program, but they are also a champion for sustainable and healthy schools. The Green Apple Day of service is a series of 3000 events around the nation in September that brings students, teachers and members of the community together for a day of hands-on. Projects are focused on green improvements, education and awareness...and to build connections between school and community. The program is also a opportunity to open the door to do more. USGBC also has a broader Green Your Schools program. This program builds on the Green Apple Day of Service and engages students in long-term projects to connect sustainability with their education. The garden being created in this video will also serve as a living biology classroom, that they helped construct. Students will study living soils, bacteria, symbiosis and the food cycle...and then they'll consume the food grown in the school cafeteria...reinforcing a powerful connection between learning and life.

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Going Solar In Haiti

On a recent video trip to Gonaives, Haiti, I bought along three solar power generating devices to help charge batteries, cell phones and video cameras--keeping our essential devices powered on-the-go and in locations with sometimes unreliable power supply. The small Everlast Green, Sol charges two AA lithium ion batteries. The Sunvolt by Gomadic utilizes a 10-watt panel to directly charge devices or a battery for power storage. And my trusty 1010 OffGrid Solar Backpack is a portable power plant and rugged, multi-pocket backback. The 1010 OffGrid uses two 4-watt panels, in a detachable unit, to charge a power storage battery. We offer these products in our store because we've used them and they perform as promised.

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Green Baggin' In

Choosing the right caterer for your next event is not about just about great food. How is the food being served? If it's not compostable or recyclable then maybe it's time to pick a new caterer. Did you know Jason Deli has a complete sustainability plan from renewable energy to green packaging to using organics when possible Jason's Deli is a great choice for your next catering need.

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