Power-filled tips highlight HEA's first Energy & Conservation Fair

Posted: Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Homer Electric Association's (HEA) Energy and Conservation Fair held last week at the Challenger Learning Center in Kenai was huge success according to HEA spokesperson Joe Gallagher. "We had a larger turn out than we anticipated. The goal of the fair was to let our local vendors, who have a great deal of knowledge about energy saving devices, distribute this information to HEA members at one location. By all accounts from vendors and visitors, we achieved that goal. The response we received was so encouraging, that we hope to turn this into an annual event. Energy conservation is important to HEA, and the bottom line is that it can save our members money," said Gallagher. The following weekend, HEA hosted the same event at the Islands & Ocean Visitor Center in Homer.

The Kenai event featured informative workshops, in addition to a wide variety of vendor booths that focused on weatherization and rebate programs. Robert Moss of Wisdom & Associates, specializes in energy audits of homes on the Peninsula. "We take a home and enter it into a computer. We look at every possible aspect of the home, from the foundation to the roof, and how it can be improved efficiency-wise, and then provide a report to the homeowner. They can review this and decide where they'd like to make changes to their home. In some instances, they can receive a rebate up to $10,000 from the State of Alaska to cover the cost of those improvements," said Moss. Moss added that most local homes built between ten to thirty years ago can benefit from the audit due to the advancement in technologies and building materials in the last five to ten years.

At Dan's TV & Appliance's booth, visitors learned that even big screen TV's have reduced their energy consumption up to 80%. "The new LCD's that are using the LED lighting only use about 20% the energy of what an older model is using. It's a huge difference," Jared Hart told the Dispatch. Other appliances such as refrigerators that were energy star rated ten years ago are today using twice as much energy as a new model according to a chart provided by Dan's TV at the Energy Fair.

The fair featured 18 different vendors with similar information on related products that included lighting options, construction materials, and alternative energy information on everything from efficient wood heat to wind power.

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