US Congress Votes in Favour of Upgrading US Homes
Cornwall ON – Recently the Harper Government suddenly cancelled the ecoENERGY Retrofit Program, which was designed to help homeowners and landlords upgrade the energy efficiency of their homes. Among things which were eligible for a grant were energy efficient furnaces and hot water heaters, energy efficient central air conditioners and heat pumps, and insulation. The program, which was matched dollar for dollar by the Ontario Government, helped make these vital improvements affordable to most Ontarians as the province begins moving forward to a green economy.
Despite the Federal Government pulling out of its commitment to a stronger future economy, the Ontario Government is remaining true to its promise, and will continue its funding, at least for the time being.
On the other hand, south of the border, the US Congress has passed, by a non-partisan vote of 246 to 161, the Home Star Retrofit Act, a bill very similar in concept to Canada’s Retrofit Program.
Efficiency First is a national nonprofit trade association that promotes Green Building Standards in the US. According to its chairman, Mike Rogers, “Home Star will create good American jobs in construction, manufacturing and related industries. It will help American homeowners improve the efficiency of their homes and save money. And it will provide a solid foundation for our country’s energy policy and energy security.
“Home Star will create hundreds of thousands of good quality jobs, while saving families money on energy bills.”
The American Congress is to be congratulated for taking such a concrete step to reduce its carbon footprint and its dependence on coal and OPEC. Equally important as we try to recover from the recession and prepare for the next, the Americans are actively creating jobs in the new Green economy, despite obvious pressures from Big Oil and Big Coal.
So why is Canada stepping backwards in a journey towards a better world?
For more information on the US Home Star Program, see http://homestarcoalition.org/HOME_STAR_Overview.pdf
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Unlike the US, Canada is showing some restraint and is committed to a stronger future economy. Thank God for the Conservatives. Unlike the US, Canada does not just print up x-trillions of dollars when they need it. In order to return to where we were before the recession struck we have to cut frivolous things like parades and other partying that we normally subsidize. We cannot afford to push money at people all the time.
HAHAHAHAAH!!!! Oh my god you’re in the dark on that one Stan. I highly suggest you watch the OhCanada Movie! Just click on my name link and it will take you right there! 😉
SWhen constructing or remodeling a property or office, concrete tends to become the last flooring selection that comes to mind. But that is mainly because it includes a reputation of getting boring, gray, and drab. This doesn’t ought to be so. Polished and decorative concrete flooring are anything but boring, and may add excellent elegance to any household or organization. Mainly because it looks similar to natural stone, and mainly because you will find a lot of alterations you possibly can make to it-such as staining, stamping, or epoxy coatings-decorative concrete is incredibly sophisticated, and may be totally exclusive.
I have to agree with Stan on this one. Everybody seems to think money from the government is free. It isn’t. Sure investing in energy efficiency might be better than some of the other crap they spend but it is no excuse to go freaking wild. We need to get back to surpluses asap and start paying down the debt again before it really hits the fan south of the border.
Some people seem to have missed the point. Canadians and Americans use more energy than any other people on the planet. It’s kind of hard to get the Chinese and the Indians to cut back when we’re the worst offenders.
All the Middle East wars are about (American and Western) energy security. The Americans have a choice: they can continue to lose thousands of their young people in a fight in Iraq, or they can learn to live within their means. Every kilowatt hour or BTU saved through insulation and upgrading reduces dependence of foreign energy sources, which are one day going to run out. The Bush administration was controlled by the oil companies, who see short term profits first. They have to take the short view, because there will be no long term profit for the oil companies. Oil is going to run out. Period. How can they sell (at a profit) something they don’t have?
Fifty years from now, everything will have to run off electricity. There’s going to have to be a massive investment in power generation (from renewable resources) in order to cater to the increased demand, so every kilowatt saved now is one less kilowatt that will have to be generated and paid for in the future.
And yes, Stan and glassbowl, we need to get the deficit under control, as the Liberals managed to do. Let’s cut out the billions of dollars of government waste and invest in our future – or in our case, Stan, our children’s and grandchildren’s future. And let’s quit the energy waste now, before it’s too late.
And glassbowl, when the proverbial really hits the fan south of the border, what makes you so sure none of it will fly over the north of the border? Why will Americans want to buy Canadian products when they can’t afford to keep their own families warm and safe?
Remember the story about the grasshopper and the ant?
Efficiency is a good thing. But why did we change lights to the CFL’s when LED is so close for residential use? How much energy did it take to make those?
Using less energy will save you money, untill the markets start selling less and need to charge more.
Richard, I am 100% sure when it hits the fan south of the border it will hit us too. That is why we need to get our house in order before then. Governments are notoriously inefficient. People are far better to go out and make the improvements on their own instead of the government taking money from one of your pockets and then turning around giving you pennies on the dollar. You can’t rely on the government.
Glassbowl: Exactly, “you can’t rely on the government.”
The Harper government promised that the ecoEnergy program would be in place until March 2011. Instead, they cancelled it abruptly in March 2010, a year ahead of schedule.
As for getting our house in order, again, you’re quite right. If Canadians and the country as a whole can quit hemorrhaging megadollars to pay for the energy we waste, then it seems to me that everyone benefits – Canada, its citizens, its governments and its businesses. Sure, we’re going to have to invest a lot of money, but this will be an investment with a guaranteed payback. Not only that, the payback will increase as energy costs get higher. Is there anywhere in the stock market, or in business, where you can invest your money with such a guarantee?
The ecoEnergy retrofit program should not have been cancelled, it just made too much sense on all fronts.
The program reduced energy consumption rather than try to subsidize new energy sources.
Much cheaper, and better for the environment.
Shame on the Feds!
Bring the ecoEnergy home retrofit program back!