CACDA news: Association kicks off energy challenge

The Cazenovia Area Community Development Association recently kicked off their Green Community Initiative with the new Energy Challenge - the first of its kind in Madison County.

Samuel Gordon, NYSERDA Energy $mart Communities coordinator for the CNY Regional Planning & Development Board, moderated the program, which included experts in residential home performance and renewable energy. Attendees discovered fun (and free) ways to save energy and money on utility bills.

"I learned about free energy audits and inexpensive, practical things like changing furnace filters regularly, and paying careful attention to the thermostat. It made me realize how much money I could save if practiced them instead of thinking I would get around to it tomorrow. From my point of view, it was a very productive hour and a half," said Pringle Symonds.

Residents from the village of Cazenovia and towns of Cazenovia, Fenner and Nelson will be able to participate in a competition to save energy in their homes from January through June 2011 to determine who will be the "Biggest Loser."

Awards will be given in two categories. The "biggest overall loser" will receive $599 toward an Energy Star Qualified dishwasher, refrigerator, or freezer of choice and $100 toward a solar site assessment from Eastern Mountain Solar. The "biggest loser" in a one month period during the competition gets a free Comfort Club Membership from TAG Mechanical (approximate cash value $250) as well as an Energy Efficiency & Green Products Kit from National Grid.

All competition participants will receive 10-percent off coupons for energy saving products from Buyea's when they provide their utility information on time each month of the program.

"We want to have as many people as possible competing in the Energy Challenge," said Barbara Henderson, CACDA Executive Director. "To sign up, go to cazenergychallenge.wordpress.com and click "sign-up" at the top of the page or call 655-7651. If you want to learn more, visit the Cazenovia Energy Challenge on Facebook and click 'Like it' to start."

The Challenge is sponsored by CACDA, CNYRPDB, NYSERDA Energy $mart Communities and Buyea's True Value Hardware.

CACDA enhances economic vitality and preserves the rural, historic character of the region through education, consensus-building and project implementation. Individuals and corporations can support CACDA's programs through contributions and volunteer efforts. For more information, call Barbara Henderson, executive director, at 655-7651 or e-mail director@cacda.net.

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