Call to Action from PACE

This article was written before the Legislature voted on a budget that raided $90 million from clean energy funds. Call Gov. Malloy — 800-406-1527 — and demand he veto the budget. The large corporations and millionaires and billionaires of CT can pay more in taxes to make up the difference. Call your legislators and tell them raiding the money from the clean energy funds is unacceptable and demand they work to reinstate those funds so people can have increased access to non-polluting energy and energy assistance.

by Mark Scully, People’s Action for Clean Energy

You may have heard that the latest Connecticut budget includes highly damaging raids to three important clean energy funds. This budget would cut $27.5 million this fiscal year and next from the CT Green Bank, $50 million per year from the Energy Efficiency Fund, $10 million per year from the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI).

These raids are tantamount to a tax on residents through their utility bills. These funds had been designated to support energy efficiency and clean energy. The CT Green Bank has become a national model for promoting investment in energy efficiency and clean energy. Robbing its balance sheet would be damaging not only to the environment but also to our economy.

These raids would be a major setback to energy efficiency and clean energy in Connecticut. Let’s make our voices heard!

PACE, PO Box 134, West Simsbury, CT 06092

PACE to Host House Tour and Electric Vehicle Show on June 10

by Mark Scully, President, PACE

People’s Action for Clean Energy (PACE) will host a tour of a beautiful, award-winning, energy-efficient home in East Haddam, CT at noon and 2:30 p.m. on Saturday, June 10. In addition, the tour will include an electric vehicle show featuring EVs from the New England Electric Automobile Association.

The home, a winner of the 2015 Connecticut Zero Energy Challenge, is an example of how energy-efficient homes can also be beautiful and comfortable to live in. It features a dramatic open floor plan, passive solar design, an extremely tight building envelope, with close attention to air quality and state-of-the-art HVAC and solar technologies. Come experience this house in person.

For tickets, go online to www.pace-cleanenergy.org and click on EVENTS. For additional information, call (860) 217-3686.

PACE to Honor Judi Friedman at Annual Meeting Nov. 12

by Mark Scully, chairperson, PACE

People’s Action for Clean Energy (PACE) will honor the legacy of long-time chairperson Judi Friedman and her husband Lou at the organization’s annual meeting at 7 p.m. on Nov. 12 at the Unitarian Society of Hartford, 50 Bloomfield Ave. in Hartford.

friedman-judi-louJudi Friedman led PACE for forty-three years and was a strong, impassioned voice in support of clean energy and against nuclear power and weapons. Judi, her supportive husband Lou and the PACE team whom they gathered and inspired have been tireless promoters of clean energy through house tours, public testimony and local radio and television programs. PACE looks forward to honoring Judi at the annual meeting with a film tribute on her legacy.

PACE will continue to live out its mission by presenting awards on Nov. 12 to the Governor’s Council on Climate Change (GC3) as well as to Lynn Stoddard, Director of the Institute for Sustainable Energy at Eastern Connecticut State University. The evening’s keynote address will be given by Ms. Stoddard about the GC3 and its strategies to meet the state’s aggressive targets to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Mark Scully, PACE’s new chairman and leader in municipal efforts to achieve 100% renewable energy, will present on the future direction of the organization. The evening will close with a musical tribute by the acclaimed musician Paul Winter.

PACE is a public health and environmental organization formed in 1973 by a group of concerned Connecticut citizens to:

  • Promote the development of alternative, renewable sources of energy,
  • Encourage the efficient use of energy,
  • Develop a spirit of conservation among Connecticut residents, and
  • Challenge Connecticut’s commitment to nuclear power and nuclear weapons.

Through its house tours, publications, radiation monitoring and recognition of environmental leaders, PACE has educated countless members of the public on energy issues. PACE is the largest all-volunteer organization in the state to be engaged with these issues, and its members are active at public events, legislative hearings and environmental forums, both in person and on state and local television and radio. PACE is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization. For further information on PACE and to reserve a free ticket to the annual meeting, go to http://www.pace-cleanenergy.org.

This issue dedicated to the memory of Dr. Morris Wessel, Judi Friedman and Lou Friedman

The PAR Planning Committee dedicates this September issue to Dr. Morris Wessel, Judi Friedman and Lou Friedman. These three people devoted their careers and their lives to help create a safer, healthier, more peaceful world.

morris-wesselProgressive Action Roundtable extends its condolences to the family of Dr. Morris Wessel, who passed on at age 98 on August 20. Dr. Wessel was a pediatrician in New Haven for forty-two years. In the 1970s he investigated the lead levels in children, and in 1974 helped found The Connecticut Hospice, the first hospice in the United States. He and his wife, social worker Irmgard Rosenzweig Wessel who died in 2014, were greatly respected and admired by many of us in the PAR community. He is survived by four children, David, Bruce, Paul and Lois; eight grandchildren; two great-grandchildren and hundreds of former patients. Contributions may be made to the Morris and Irmgard Wessel Fund, a donor-advised fund at the Community Foundation of Greater New Haven, which makes annual awards to unsung heroes who are improving life for residents of the city. For more about Dr. Wessel: http://www.newhavenindependent.org/index.php/archives/entry/morris_wessel

friedman-judi-louIt is with great sadness that PAR learned of the passing of Judi and Lou Friedman of Canton on July 25. They both suffered with painful and debilitating health issues. Judi led the People’s Action for Clean Energy organization for forty-three years and has regularly written articles for the PAR newsletter. Lou was co-founder of Beyond Nuclear, a national non-profit promoting a nuclear-free world. For decades, PACE has been a resource for information and action on clean-energy issues and energy efficiency. Judi and Lou helped educate many of us about the dangers of nuclear power. At its annual meeting in the fall, PACE will be honoring the lives of Judi and Lou.

For more information, contact Mark Scully, Chairman of PACE, at mwscully29@gmail.com.

Ultimate Net Zero Energy House Tour May 21

by Judi Friedman, People’s Action for Clean Energy

The ultimate net zero energy house will be open to the public on Saturday, May 21. With a rating of -23, this South Glastonbury, Connecticut, home is the most energy-efficient house in North America. It was the 2014 CT Zero Energy Challenge winner; the RESNET 2015 Cross Border Challenge winner; and the 2015 Housing Innovations Award winner.

Tours and seminars will be held at noon and 2:30 p.m. The 2,755 square-foot house has a geothermal heating and cooling system; a rotating photovoltaic steel pole array that powers all appliances, LED lights and the hot water heater. The PV is connected to the grid but is able to get power when the grid goes down.

Other energy saving features in this home for four people include a centrally heated foundation; aluminum roofing shingles with a 70-year lifespan; an energy recovery ventilator; triple glazed windows and Energy Star appliances. The tour is sponsored by Peoples Action for Clean Energy (PACE), the only all-volunteer nonprofit public health organization in Connecticut devoted solely to clean energy education.

Reservations are accepted in order of receipt for the tour, which will be held rain or shine. The non-refundable tickets are $15.00 per person. To order tickets, go online to http://www.pace-cleanenergy.org and click on Events, indicating the choice of time for the tours and seminar. Tickets may also be ordered by sending $15.00 per person to PACE c/o Donna Grant, 128 Melrose Road, Broad Brook, CT 06016. Include the ticket holder’s name, phone number, address, email address and choice of time. For ticket information, call Judi Friedman, (860) 623-5487. For tour information, call (860) 693-4813.

Demand NO Ratepayer Subsidies to Support Millstone Nuclear Plant!

by Judi Friedman, People’s Action for Clean Energy

Connecticut’s Nuke operators are back for another handout at the last minute!! Millstone owners and nuclear power leaders have been recklessly uneconomic from the start. We are still paying massive cost overruns at Millstone III. The only reason nuclear power exists is the subsidization of every aspect of the industry by all of us!

Our nuclear plants are aging and therefore dangerous! Our nuclear plants continually emit low level radiation into the water and air! Our nuclear plants are terrorist targets! Our nuclear plants are not carbon free. Carbon is used in the milling and mining and transport of uranium, for backup generation in case of failure and many other purposes. Dominion has already closed other plants.

Germany has responded to the Fukushima disaster by planning to shut down nuclear reactors because of their smart, early, and widespread adoption of solar, other renewables, and energy efficiency. The longer we delay the adoption of shared solar and investment in clean energy, the more vulnerable we are to extortion claims like this. THIS IS EXTORTION!

On March 24 there was an informational forum about possible ratepayer subsidies to support Millstone, because the power it produces now costs more relative to other sources, as natural gas prices have declined. More about it in CT Mirror article here: http://ctmirror.org/2016/03/23/nuclear-powers-future-in-connecticut-is-on-the-table/#

What you can do: Email testimony to the Committee as soon as possible. Testimony may be submitted to this address: ettestimony@cga.ct.gov. Tell the Energy and Technology Committee how you feel about nuclear power plants in Connecticut and subsidizing them!

RadiationNetwork

by Pam McDonald, People’s Action for Clean Energy

Welcome to RadiationNetwork.com, home of the National Radiation Map, depicting environmental radiation levels  across the USA, updated in real time every minute.  This is the first web site where the average citizen (or anyone in the world) can see what radiation levels are anywhere in the USA at any time.

How the Map Works: A growing number of radiation monitoring stations across the country (and world), using various models of Geiger counters, upload their radiation count data in real time to their computer using a data cable, and then over the internet to this web site. All of this is accomplished through GeigerGraph for Networks software. This system is completely automated — there is no manual posting of data required.

The site http://www.radiationnetwork.com gives you a list of compatible Geiger counters, maps of various locations around the world and where the readings are being recorded and sent to MineraLab, located in Arizona.

If you are taking readings and submitting them live to this project via their software, you have access to these advantages:

  • You can live chat with Mineralab online and by phone if you are are having difficulties.
  • The map itself has “layers” that you can turn on and off, that identify locations of airports, trains, roads, streets, rivers, secondary rivers, lakes, localized maps, city names.
  • You can see information about various reading stations including their maximum and minimum readings.
  • There is a button that equalizes readings (not all monitors are equally sensitive.)
  • There are various graph options (trending graphs, average graphs for entire network, etc.) that you can see with simple and instant selections.
  • You can search for sites, cities, etc. by name or state.
  • It posts alerts for reading stations that have sudden or dangerous spikes in readings.

For more information about RadiationNetwork, please contact Pam McDonald at pmcdonald772@gmail.com.

People’s Action for Clean Energy Meeting February 3

by Judi Friedman, PACE

Please join us for a cozy and unusual winter meeting at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 3 (Snow date: Feb. 4) at the wonderful home of Nevin and Julie Christensen, 44 West Mountain Rd. in West Simsbury.

Agenda items include:

  • Engaging representative participation of the Muslim
    community;
  • Community shared solar (That’s REAL DEMOCRACY!);
  • Natural gas pipeline expansion through wetlands and
    reservoirs;
  • Report on Simsbury as a potential 100% renewable energy
    town!;
  • Restructuring our utilities  (Acadia report);
  • Spring tour site ideas; and
  • Report on daily radiation monitoring of Connecticut
    nuclear plants.

And we have very good food! Yum!  (Bring something special if you wish !)

For information on the meeting/weather, please call (860) 693-4813.

PACE Presents ‘Wake Up, Connecticut’ Nov. 21

by Judi Friedman, People’s Action for Clean Energy

Saturday, Nov. 21, People’s Action for Clean Energy will present WAKE UP, CONNECTICUT, featuring Connecticut leaders who are successfully working on renewable energy investments; Connecticut clean energy legislation; solar community-building; and solar panel installation. The 2015 Lifetime Achievement Award will be presented to Lucas Hixson (MI), who has just returned from inside the Chernobyl nuclear plant. He will showcase the ongoing dangers that this accident still represents and compare it to present and possible US nuclear plant scenarios.

Beginning at 6 p.m., homemade Stromboli, desserts and beverages will be available for purchase, with opportunities to view exhibits and literature. After a brief meeting at 7 p.m., opened by former State Rep. and PACE President Timothy Bowles, awards to unique Connecticut leaders will include State Rep. Jonathan Steinberg; the leaders of the Connecticut Roundtable on Climate and Jobs; Bernard Zahren of Clean Feet Investors; Allied Printing; and Beyond Nuclear board member Lucas Hixson.

This timely and special free public event will conclude with evocative songs sung by beautiful Teryn Kuzma with bandura accompaniment.

The program will take place at the Hartford Friends Meeting House, 144 S. Quaker Lane, West Hartford. For more information, go to http://www.pace-cleanenergy.org or call (860) 693-4813.

 

Sharon House Tour Oct. 3: Fascinating Solar Straw Bale House Saves Energy

by Judi Friedman, People’s Action for Clean Energy

A fascinating passive solar home is on tour in Sharon, CT on Saturday, October 3. This Net Zero Energy Challenge winning house has organic straw bale construction and 33 solar-electric panels on the house and horse barn. Tours and seminars will be held at 12 noon and 2:30 p.m. by the knowledgeable owners and technology experts. Nearby, the Sharon Audubon Center has one-hour raptor aviary tours at 10 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. for $5 per person.

The house has a dramatic open floor plan, with a beautiful handmade masonry heater that supplies most of the heat. Other energy-saving features include solar-powered mini split ductless heat and cooling pumps; ground mount solar hot water panels; an HRV air exchanger; natural lighting supplemented by LED and compact fluorescent bulbs; and recycled energy-efficient appliances.

The event is sponsored by People’s Action for Clean Energy, the only all-volunteer nonprofit public health organization in Connecticut devoted solely to clean energy education. Co-sponsors are the Sharon Audubon Society and the Connecticut Chapter of the Sierra Club.

Reservations will be accepted in order of receipt for the October 3 tour, which will be held rain or shine. The non-refundable tickets are $15 per person. To order tickets, go online to www.pace-cleanenergy.org and click on Events, indicating the choice of time for the tours and seminars. Tickets may also be ordered by sending $15 per person to PACE c/o Donna Grant, 128 Melrose Road, Broad Brook, CT 06016. Include the ticketholder’s name, phone number, address, email address and choice of time. For ticket information, call (860) 623-5487. For tour information, call (860) 693-4813.

Zero Energy House Tour May 2

by Judi Friedman, People’s Action for Clean Energy

A Killingly, Connecticut zero energy house will be open to the public on Saturday, May 2. Tours and seminars will be held at noon and 2:30 p.m. The 2,600-square-foot Net Zero Energy Challenge winner has 12-inch thick walls; solar panels; air source heating and cooling pumps; a heat pump water heater; an ICF foundation; triple glazed windows; ceiling and sub slab insulation; and constant fresh air ventilation.

Other energy-saving features in this ideal retirement home include lighting from LED and compact fluorescent bulbs and energy-efficient appliances (Energy Star). The house has French drains (no gutters, no ice dams) and a permeable driveway. Electric cars will be on display. The tour/seminar is sponsored by People’s Action for Clean Energy (PACE), the only all-volunteer nonprofit public health organization in Connecticut devoted solely to clean energy education.

Additional information will be available on ethanol fireplaces; combination solar hot water for a radiant floor and a solar heated pool; surplus energy for electric cars; affordable retirement homes and minisplit  heat pumps.

Reservations will be accepted in order of receipt for the May 2 tour, which will be held rain or shine. The non-refundable tickets are $15.00 per person. To order tickets, go online to www.pace-cleanenergy.org and click on Events, indicating the choice of time for the tours and seminar.

Tickets may also be ordered by sending $15.00 per person to PACE c/o Donna Grant, 128 Melrose Road, Broad Brook, CT 06016. Include the ticketholder’s name, phone number, address, email address and choice of time. For ticket information, call (860) 623-5487. For tour information, call (860) 693-4813.

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