Energy generation and consumption are the most crucial issue to be addressed in regard to global climate change. Without these efforts to reduce consumption and shift to more renewable forms of energy, little can be done to reduce carbon emissions and slow the increase in global temperatures that can have extremely damaging effects to our global community.
A focus of the EGT’s activities since its inception, the Energy Efficiency Committee has worked with Township administration, auditing facilities to identify areas where significant energy (and $) savings can be obtained. Since that time the following improvements have been made to twp. facilities:
- all LED lighting has been installed in the municipal building parking lot,
- a new energy efficient white roof and new high efficiency boilers were installed at the municipal building.
- reflective film was installed on the windows on the windows at town hall to reduce the air conditioning load and energy usage.
- the Ewing Senior and Community Center has had a series of upgrades, including the latest – LED interior lighting.
During the 2014 Visioning a three pronged plan of action was identified as a priority for the Energy Team. They include promotion of energy efficient measures to Ewing businesses, residents, and Ewing Township.
- Direct Install Campaign for Local Businesses
New Jersey has made it simple for businesses to take part in reducing energy consumption in the state of New Jersey and offers a number of programs to help businesses through the process. Despite the success the state has had in implementing these programs many businesses are still unaware of the incentives offered through the State to upgrade equipment and reduce energy costs. The Green Team is assisting Ewing’s administration and council to promote the BPU’s Direct Install program for small and medium size businesses. To learn more about our efforts and the program go to the EGT’s Direct Install page.
- Home Energy Audit Program for Residents
In addition to the outreach as indicated above, the Ewing Green Team is in the process of selecting a commercial energy auditing company to develop a low cost residential energy audit offer for township homeowners. The results of these home energy audits will give residents specific plans and costs for upgrades designed to reduce their energy consumption, and thereby reduce the community’s carbon footprint. Look for more information coming shortly.
- Energy Education and Outreach for Residents
Educating the public about how energy works is the first step towards shifting consumptive behavior. The average homeowner probably only knows how much their electricity costs but not how it is generated and transmitted. Teaching homeowners about where electricity comes from, its environmental costs, and simple ways to reduce consumption could lead to significant carbon emission reductions. The Home Performance with Energy Star program will be incorporated into the Education and Outreach programming to get Ewing residents started in examining energy usage in their own homes.
- Home Performance with Energy Star Municipal Program
The same program developed for businesses through the state has also been adapted for NJ municipalities. Starting with an energy audit, a plan for upgrading equipment, changing lighting and reducing overall energy consumption is prepared for the municipality. After receiving the plan the municipality can apply for grant funding to implement recommendations in the plan.