Energy | Sustainability

Carrots and Sticks

Legislators have long used a variety of incentives and disincentives to encourage or discourage certain behaviors.  Subsidies, like tax credits and loan guarantees, help jumpstart and grow new businesses.  Taxes, penalties and outright bans make it uncomfortable or illegal to continue doing what we’ve done in the past. So when the federal government banned the…

Energy | Sustainability

Global Tree House

The past few months we’ve been exploring different opportunities to embrace sustainability.  We examined a number of trendsetting advances in Germany that can be applauded and built upon, including an energy independent community and an ultra-efficient home that produces enough energy to also charge an electric vehicle. One thing that many Americans have come to…

Energy | Sustainability

Energy Independent Community

Sustainability is generally defined as “meeting present needs without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs.”  Our abundant fossil fuel resources have been an enormous energy reserve that we’ve been able to use to build and grow with, and yet we have to recognize the finite nature of those fuels.  Debates may…

Energy | Sustainability

Success Story on Home Energy Efficiency

The Energize Missouri Homes program, made possible by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act through the Missouri Department of Natural Resources, was introduced last year to offer significant financial incentives to improve your home’s energy efficiency.  This included energy audits, insulation and air sealing, and heating and cooling upgrades.  These improvements save you money on…

Energy | Sustainability

Getting to Net Zero

With evidence of climate change becoming more prevalent, there is a growing awareness and desire to reduce our “carbon footprint.”  While there continues to be debate in the mainstream about the cause and effects of climate change, the scientific community is overwhelmingly undivided on the subject. In America, buildings are responsible for about 39% of…