Tax Credits – Not Just Solar

by Joel Zook, Energy Planner We’ve talked a lot here at the energy district about the phase out of the solar tax credits, but it’s important to know that there are other tax credits for energy efficiency measures and geothermal heating and cooling systems that will also soon come to an end. First off, a little known tax credit was revived earlier this year that allows homeowners to claim a

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What you need to know about solar in 2020

Interested in investing in solar for your home, farm, or business? 2020 is the perfect time to go solar!  A combination of low solar costs combined with federal and state tax credits (which are decreasing each year) and rising electricity rates makes now a great time to install solar. Our very own Joel Zook, energy planner at Winneshiek Energy District, holistically details the need-to-know concepts for anyone considering the benefits

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LED Holiday Lights

LED Holiday Lights

This article is an excerpt from the Department of Energy’s page on LED lighting. We love how it takes into account the longevity of an LED strand and lays out the math of electrical use. LED Holiday Lights LEDs consume far less electricity than incandescent bulbs, and decorative LED light strings such as Christmas tree lights are no different. Not only do LED holiday lights consume less electricity, they also

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Decorah Bank and Trust: A key partner for Energy Efficiency

Decorah Bank and Trust: A key partner for Energy Efficiency

By: Briana Burke, Green Iowa AmeriCorps NE Iowa’s Energy-Efficiency Triad In 2017 an estimated 66.7% to 86% of energy production in the United States was wasted (Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, 2017). In a time when we are facing a climate crisis, we are not only the single largest per-capita producers of greenhouse gas emissions that drive climate change, but well over half of our emissions end up in the atmosphere

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Energy Burden in Rural America

Energy Burden in Rural America

Joel Zook, Energy Planner The ACEEE article shared in this newsletter shows that rural American households are one-third more likely to be energy burdened than the average US household. There are several ways to calculate “energy burden” and not one agreed-upon definition. ACEEE defines “Energy Burdened” households as those who spend 6% of their annual income energy bills (electricity and heating fuel). In last month’s newsletter, we highlighted the fact

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Tax Credits: Our Take

Tax Credits: Our Take

Andy Johnson, Executive Director With the potential phase-out of various tax credits, we’re often asked (or we offer) our perspective. Here it is, in brief. Renewable energy tax credits have worked: they have driven the scaling up of the industry, driven down costs, and driven market transformation and job creation, which to a large degree is what they’re meant to do. Tax credits are not an equitable approach to incentivizing a clean energy transition.

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Energy Savvy Business -Fall Learning Series

Energy Savvy Business -Fall Learning Series

Are you a Decorah Chamber member looking to save money and go green? The Winneshiek Energy District and Decorah Area Chamber of Commerce invites you to become an Energy Savvy Business with this four-week course. Attend all four classes or select the ones that are most relevant to you! Don’t own your building? Not a problem – bring your landlord along free of charge. Learn more and register Solar for

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Swap Bulbs, Save Money

Swap Bulbs, Save Money

Kristin Eggen, Communications and Outreach When it comes to energy-efficiency, lighting is low-hanging fruit that offers the biggest payback. That’s why energy districts across northeast Iowa have organized quick-and-easy Bulb Swaps for your to quickly exchange up to four incandescent lightbulbs for high-efficiency LED bulbs. Winneshiek County July 31 and August 7  Winneshiek Farmers Market – 3 pm to 6 pm August 14 Decorah Community Food Pantry – 1:30 pm to

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“You Found What??” Stories from a year of energy savings

Kristin Eggen, Communications Specialist From disconnected ducts to alien cats, attend this month’s energy breakfast to hear stories from a year in the “boots” of northeast Iowa’s energy-saving superstars: The Green Iowa AmeriCorps team. The 2018-19 team has made an impressive impact in our community through home energy assessments, environmental education, and outreach:  11 months, 4 full-time members, two summer members, 120 homes, and over 112 tons of carbon saved. The

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