Nest at HomeSmart thermostats are all the rage in the worlds of home improvement and energy efficiency. Smart thermostats now allow homeowners to control and adjust the temperature of their home from the convenience of any smart phone or device such as a tablet or laptop with a wireless internet connection. While these devices are expensive, they can actually be quite beneficial and will save you a significant amount of money on your energy bills each month. If you are still unsure about whether a smart thermostat is right for you and your lifestyle, here are a few factors to consider.

The first thing to consider when looking into smart thermostats is your schedule. Smart thermostats are ideal for people with very irregular schedules who may not be able to program a thermostat regularly on the same schedule each day or even each week. When you invest in a smart thermostat, you can set your thermostat no matter where you are as long as you have access to the Internet. This is great if a meeting runs over or if you forgot to turn the heat off when you left for the day. Having this convenience ensure that you are not wasting energy when no one is in the house.

A smart thermostat, however, is not necessarily for everyone. If you work from home or are a stay at home parent, you do not often have the problem of not being able to adjust the thermostat from your home, so you may not be able to take full advantage of these features on a smart thermostat. Also, a programmable thermostat may be best for a homeowner who falls in between having a sporadic schedule and being home for a majority of the day. If you work a regular 9-5, you may benefit from being able to pre-set your thermostat ahead of time. While you will not have the ability to control the thermostat while you are away, you can enter your typical weekday and weekend schedule so that the thermostat will automatically turn on or shut off when you plan to be home or out at work.

Next, consider your energy bills. If your energy bills are under control and affordable, a programmable or smart thermostat may not be necessary for you. This can often depend on your area’s climate and how cold or hot your home gets during seasonal changes. However, if you are like most homeowners, heating and cooling costs can become quite outrageous, especially as energy costs are skyrocketing. Investing in a smart thermostat may seem like a big jump since they are often expensive, however you will often earn back the money you originally invested in just a few months due to the significant savings you will enjoy. When you have more control over your thermostat, you can ensure that energy is not being wasted when people are not home to enjoy it. Cut down on your costs while also helping to reduce your carbon footprint and negative impact on the environment with a smart thermostat.

Smart thermostats are not necessary for everyone, but if you have an on the go lifestyle, or if your schedule changes regularly, you can seriously benefit from the luxury, convenience and effectiveness of a smart thermostat in your home. Once you decide to install a thermostat, you can research how to choose a contractor to install the device properly. When you switch from a conventional thermostat to a smart thermostat, you will immediately save money by reducing energy waste while also helping the environment!

photo by: brendan-c

{ 0 comments }

Climate Question Time @ Islington South & FinsburyThe history of the debate on climate change in Australia is long and winding – and, essentially, it all ties in with the carbon tax, which has recently been renamed the ‘climate tax’. Moreover, in light of the recent bush fires in the Sydney area (which expanded into all of New South Wales), several voices rushed to criticize the Coalition’s stance on climate change. Most notoriously, deputy Greens leader Adam Bandt came in for severe criticism, after he shared an objectionable image via social media, which linked the ruling party’s decisions with the spread of the fires. Meanwhile, late October saw most of New South Wales under bush fire threat, as the climate change debate took a back seat in the face of the unfolding drama. In the following, we explore Australia’s latest bush fire crisis and delve into the Greens’ arguments against Coalition climate change policies.

Climate change and bush fires: a link worth questioning?

To most of the world, denying the realities of climate change might seem like an unlikely candidate at a popular view – but in Australia the situation has been further complicated by a political issue. When the Labor party decided to introduce the carbon tax, as a measure for addressing the budget deficit, they pleaded the climate change card. Many industry representatives rushed to argue against any environmental issues in Australia, although the population Down Under is, by and large, ecologically-minded. In one of the world’s most sun-blessed countries, many inhabitants opt for green lifestyle alternatives, such as solar panel power systems and fold down clotheslines to replace CO2-producing technologies for drying their clothes. At the same time, many believe that blaming bush fire season on climate change is the former ruling party’s attempt at justifying their fiscal decisions.

Where does the truth lie? According to the former Climate Commission, the link between global warming and the very early start of the 2013 bush fire season in Sydney is obvious. Australia saw the hottest year in its recorded history and recently released data from the national Bureau of Meteorology says the fourth warmest spring in history gave way to its hottest winter, closely trailed by the one in 2005. In the meantime, the political battle raged on, in the upswing to the Federal elections. However, as numerous analysts noted, it was an election campaign from which the ecological agenda was tacitly absent. In the aftermath of the election, however, that silence was notoriously broken by the Greens.

Are the Greens fanning the fire for no good reason?

In mid-October, deputy party leader Adam Bandt of the Australian Greens tweeted a picture, which he captioned by saying that, should the Coalition maintain its current environmental policies, is just the beginning of an ecological disaster for Australia. Band came in for numerous harsh critiques over his statements, but did not back down. He reprised his arguments and claimed the time has come for Australia to acknowledge the very overt connection between climate change and bush fires. He also expressed his concern about the debut of the fire season as early as October.

The fires started on the very same week when, according to Bandt, Australia took a backward step in terms of the struggle against global warming. Bandt acknowledged the fact that his arguments would strike many as uncomfortable, but said that the anxiety over the recent fires in New South Wales would only amplify, if the issue of climate change continues to be swept under the rug by the ruling party. The Greens party leader, Christine Milne, took the stand in support of her deputy and criticized Abbott for having “[boasted] dumping climate action”. Of course, Environment Minister Greg Hunt was less than pleased with the statements and asked the Greens not to politicize the tragedy in New South Wales. Where do you think the truth lies in this thorny debate?

{ 0 comments }

5 Effective Green Marketing Methods for Your Business

December 2, 2013

With all of the many obvious ways to greenify your business, you might not immediately come around to identifying your marketing efforts as an area where you can do your environmental duty. Most businesses start by asking employees to recycle and setting up bins for paper, plastic, aluminum, and glass. Or you might lean towards […]

Read the full article →

Commercial Solar Panels

November 7, 2013

Another week and another energy company raises its prices. With an average bill of over £ 2500, which represents 0.36% of business turnover, how can the average business stay afloat and still deliver excellent service? How do you maintain a competitive edge with dwindling profit margins? The new increase is only one of many and […]

Read the full article →

5 Fast and Simple Green Improvements That Help Your Home Sell

October 28, 2013

When it comes to preparing your home for sale, you’ve likely got quite a few items on your to-do list already. As you probably know, kitchen and bathroom upgrades are the most likely to interest buyers and result in return on investment, especially if these areas of your home are more than a little outdated […]

Read the full article →

5 Tips for Winterizing Your AC and Water Lines

October 22, 2013

When you start to feel a bit of chill in the air and you wake up in the morning to notice frost on the windshield of your car, these are signs that point to the fact that the winter season is well on its way. But while you’re doing things like putting up thermal curtains […]

Read the full article →

5 Tips for Getting Better Gas Mileage No Matter What You Drive

October 17, 2013

Unless you’re someone who happens to own a hybrid car, there is probably not one time when you don’t find yourself going to a gas station, looking at the prices and wishing that there was a way that you could get better gas mileage on your automobile. After all, the better mileage you get, the […]

Read the full article →

How to Harness Solar Energy for Your Home’s Electric Needs

October 13, 2013

As you are probably aware, there are many alternatives these days for eco-minded homeowners that are hesitant to draw electricity from the grid. If you’re tired of contributing to the pollution and waste that are produced from burning fossil fuels and creating nuclear energy, then you might be on the lookout for a natural and […]

Read the full article →

The Difference between Hydro and Solar Power

October 10, 2013

If you’re someone who considers yourself to be pretty eco-friendly, then that also means that you are an individual who strives to make energy efficient decisions. This could include everything from using Energy Star appliances and florescent light bulbs to installing low-flow toilets and putting aerogel insulation in your attic. But if you really want […]

Read the full article →

How Valuable is your Metal Scrap

October 9, 2013

Scrap metal recycling is a major component of the recycling industry. Scrap metal, if not discarded in the appropriate manner can be an environmental hazard. Metal is corrosive in nature and can pollute the land and air by emitting harmful minerals and chemicals, which will ultimately affect us. Recycled metal is used as raw material […]

Read the full article →