Blog

  • Germany teaches PUSH about energy

     

    Energy Transition, or "Energiewende," in Germany

    Energiewende, or Energy Transition, is the process that has put Germany at the lead globally in the transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy. Last month, PUSH Executive Director, Aaron Bartley, traveled to Germany to learn more from these global leaders in energy.

    We asked Aaron to recall his trip for us and here’s what he had to say, in his own words.

    1. It is possible for small communities to build electric generation and heat systems that are community owned, off-the-grid, 100% renewable, and cheaper than utilities. In Feldheim, we met with a community member who described partnerships with a wind entrepreneur to build dozes of turbines at the edge of town. He also partnered with other contractors to build micro-grids to fain independence from the utilities and install central heat systems for the whole town.

    2. The transition to renewables relies on our ability to build a social movement rooted in Energy Democracy. In Germany, this moment came out of a crisis: the Chernobyl disaster. The entire society was affected deeply by the fear of nuclear clouds overhead. That led to social movements and mass consciousness about energy. This was important both to build the political support needed for policies and so that citizens felt connected enough to the problem and solution that they themselves wanted to play a role by investing in solar and wind.

    3. The transition doesn’t come cheap. Germans pay a tax to support the transition. This makes it unpopular in some areas, but the public generally supports the energiewende because of their consciousness about climate change.  

    4. Clear and transparent standards are important. Practically everyone in the country knows the goals for renewable energy production and carbon reduction for 2020 and 2040.

    Co-sponsored by the research institute EcoLogic and the German government, Aaron and nine others drawn from the world of think tanks, policy advocacy, and philanthropy also attended the tri-city tour of Berlin, Hamburg, and Feldheim.

    This trip is particularly exciting for those of us at PUSH Buffalo and PUSH Green. We believe in giving people as much autonomy in their consumption of energy, an idea encapsulated by the Energy Democracy work we’re actively engaged in. That’s why we’re taking our necessary steps with our weatherization and energy efficiency work – to keep less dollars in your pocket, not in corporations.

    While we work on this, want to get started in your own way? Call us for a free energy assessment and we’ll figure out where we can help make your home warmer and your wallet fuller.

    In solidarity,

    PUSH Green

     

    Feldheim, Germany - 100% of renewable energy produced locally

     

     

  • Giving Thanks at PUSH Green

    Happy Thanksgiving! 

    It’s that time of year when people take some time to reflect on what they’re thankful for. Good health, good company, and good food is a central focus of thankfulness because of what we surrounded by this week.

    Here at PUSH Green, we’re thankful for quite a few other things. So we sat down as a team and discussed what we’re thankful for in our work and our daily lives here at PUSH Buffalo.

    · Creating Green Jobs. We can’t express our gratitude for the good fortune to create green jobs in our neighborhoods for the members of our communities. Through our training programs, our contractors, and by way of in-house staff, we’re keeping people working for a more sustainable green economy while earning a living wage. Our Workforce Development team enjoys working directly with the community and giving them access to training – ultimately, seeing the results of a job well done first.

    · Helping People Know the Process. Our Energy Advocates do a lot of the necessary paperwork for our Energy Efficiency home and business owners. It’s not in our nature to leave anyone alone with paperwork that might seem overwhelming and confusing.

    · Keeping People Warm. The end result is what we’re really after. After the initial meeting, the audit, and the contactor’s work is done, we look forward to hear from the people working or living where the energy efficiency work was done. We like knowing you’re warmer and more comfortable, without outrageous utility bills! We keep track of when winter’s coming so that we can best help you!

    Of course with every passing year and gaining a larger contingent of supporters, we’re constantly finding new ways to be thankful for this life we’ve developed at PUSH Green. But the basic principles of what we do keep us motivated and thankful all year round!

    It’s easy to see why we’re thankful for our work in energy efficiency. We’re just here to help!

    And we’ll be honest. We all said we’re thankful for the day off to enjoy with our loved ones. And pie. The promise of pie is always something to look forward to.

    What are you thankful for?

  • PUSH Green & Roc Da Sustainable Mic visit Music Is Art This Year

    We're extremely excited to announce that we will table and bring another edition of the Sustainable Mic with us to the Music Is Art Festival on September 13th. You'll know where we are because #EnergyEfficiency never sounded so good. We'll have music right by our table.

    What is the Sustainable Mic?

    A musically driven performance piece, with song, spoken word, and live instrumentation. The Sustainable Mic looks at not just the physical, or material aspects of sustainable redevelopment, but also the people involved and affected. It features performances by the Buffalo NY based band Ismail and Company with support from the Thursday Nights Roc Da Mic emcee crew.  Our first edition of it was at Silo City for City of Night Buffalo 2014 and it was a huge hit. We can't wait to do it again. 

    Come talk to us to see how your home or small business can get warmer and save money this coming winter. We hope to see you there!! 

    #BuffaloNY #PUSHgreen#SustainableMicBuffalo #BuffaloArtsUnderground #PUSHbuffalo

     

  • Summer Tabling Recap

    The weather this summer was truly amazing. It made for a great atmosphere for tabling at different community events. Just because winter was taking a break, doesn't mean we were #RememberWinter. Winter is coming around again and we want to make sure you know who we are so that your home or small business can get ready. We tabled at Silo City for City of Night, the Elmwood Avenue Festival of the Arts, and at Larkin Market in Larkin Square among other places. Here's a quick photo recap of our adventures.  

            

     


  • Buff News says no "polar vortex" But Still Get Ready For Winter

    The Buffalo News says that the Farmers' Almanac has no mention of the term "polar vortex", but you should still get your home or small business ready for winter. Here's a link to the story. #EnergyEfficiency #BuffaloNY

     

  • Business Owners Be Like September 2014

     

    Winter is coming, get energy efficient call 716.886.1780 and talk with one of our Community Energy Advocates today. Find out how your home or small business can save money on utility bills. #PUSHgreen #BuffaloNY



  • Good music to the ears – Home is where the heart is

    “Just random memories of life without energy efficiency” - (PBI)

    By Professor Bill Insulation (PBI)

    “Heart is a house for love, and I’ve learned, that it don’t take much to build it up” – The Dells

    Home is where the heart is. Some of us remember finally getting our own rooms (if we had siblings), getting our first apartments, or buying our first residences. Some of us remember our first jobs, and first starting our own small businesses. The feeling of independence is something that makes life worth living.

    “Heart is a house for love, and I’ve learned, that it don’t take much to break” – Dells

    I remember singing this line in my head when the ancient artifact known as our furnace died out in an apartment I lived in one late September. It wasn’t an Indian summer either; this particular fall was as cold as you know what. It was quite the experience to say the least. The one thing that I’ll always remember is that under certain conditions, one becomes very creative in finding ways to generate and keep heat. I remember plugging in every lamp I had, and opening the oven door for heat. I also received a much higher than normal electric bill.

    I wish there was a program like PUSH Green years ago when I was working in an old warehouse for a company which no longer exists. It wasn’t a bad place to work, other than the fact that the building it was in wasn’t very energy efficient. I worked during the 2nd shift, at night working production during the winter. At night in the winter time in Buffalo, the weather is the coldest. One of the job requirements not mentioned on the application was a winter coat. I’m not sure what they paid in utility bills, but it seemed like the heat that was there was just going right out the window.

    “Build it up, build it up, build it up, build it up” – The Dells

    I mentioned these horror stories because home is where the heart is, winter is coming (probably one of the scariest things you’ve heard all summer right?) and I want you to know how to get energy efficient. If you didn’t know, there are resources available for you to get your residence or small business ready. PUSH Green has residential (homes, apartment units), and commercial (small businesses) programs. Each program works differently so you’ll have to give one of their Community Energy Advocates a call at 716.886.1780 to learn more.

     

  • Homeowners Be Like July 2014

  • Why we’re hosting an Ambassador Event on May 15th

    We've traveled to Albany more times than we can count to advocate for legislation that helps to promote energy efficiency. With help from our partners across the state, that legislation – Green Jobs Green New York – became a reality in 2009.

    Since then, we've knocked on hundreds of doors.

    We've tabled at community events and presented at churches and neighborhood association groups.

    And we've convened over a dozen energy efficiency contractors in our community to form our program.

    We’re in year three and we’re looking to expand. We started out in Erie County and now we’re looking to connect with home and small business owners in Niagara and Cattaraugus Counties too.

    So we’re having an ambassador event to kick things off.

    In 2008, Erie County Homeowners with income at or below 80% of the annual median income paid $267,516,827 more than they could afford for their energy bills." 

    The above is a statement from the 2011 LIFE Energy Affordability Gap report. Energy bills continue to rise and our beautiful housing stock continues to age – the need for energy efficiency in our region will only increase from here.

    In the past, we've partnered with trusted allies like NYS Assemblyman Sean Ryan, Village of Kenmore Mayor Patrick Mang and Buffalo Common Council Member Michael J. LoCurto to help us get the word out about our program. We're so grateful for these partnership and know this is only the beginning.

    Why are we having an ambassador’s event on May 15, 5:30 PM at Coco Bistro & Bar?

    Because our friends and neighbors continue to deal with rising energy costs.

    Because we need jobs in our community and we believe they can be created through the weatherization sector.

    Do you have a friend or neighbor who endured this harsh winter without proper insulation or a proper furnace in their home?

    Want to help drive real job creation in our community?

    If so, the ambassador event is for you.

    Join us! 

  • PUSH Green releases 2012 - 2013 progress report to mark two year anniversary

    It’s hard to believe that PUSH Green is two years old. Our six person team has been hard at work recruiting home and business owners, contractors and job seekers to participate in energy efficiency programs that benefit our community. 

    Over the last two years, we’ve assisted over 472 homeowners get a comprehensive energy audit on their home. Over 132 of those homeowners went on to have energy saving upgrades performed on their home like getting new insulation blown into their walls or having a high energy efficiency furnace installed. Our region has some of the oldest housing stock in the nation – much of which was built before insulation was the norm. It’s a great feeling to take back some control over your energy bills!

    In 2013, our program was extended to small businesses and nonprofits organizations. In just under a year, we’ve helped 38 such owners get audits on their buildings.  Check Sheila out with the owner of C&R Housing who just signed up for a retrofit on his building.  We love this work! Being able to connect homeowners and business owners in our community to energy efficiency services that helps them

    1. Save on their energy bills
    2. Creates local jobs
    3. Reduces our regions carbon footprint

    Is a no brainer!

    Check out the full two year journey by downloading our progress report and call our team at 716-886-1780 for info on our program!

RSS Feed