Start Your Year with a Home Energy Audit

Thermal Image of the House

  I talk a lot about energy savings for business but as a homeowner I’m also interested in saving energy at home. Now that 2013 is here, it’s time to make some New Year’s resolutions for your home! Following through with those resolutions will not only be helpful for the environment, but will also save you money. Before you can make your goals, you’ll need to take a closer look at your home. When it comes to home energy efficiency, the problem is often air leaks. Remember, even if you have a new HVAC system, you can still waste a lot of energy if you have poorly insulated doors, … [More]

10 Things You Can Do This Year to Save Energy in Your Home

Caulking window

Since I care about the environmental and financial benefits of saving energy, I spend a lot of time making sure Extra Space Storage properties are energy efficient. I also put that passion for energy efficiency to work at my home on weekends!   Believe it or not, there are plenty of weekend projects you can complete that will make a difference all year long when it comes to your utility bill, and your impact on the environment. Other tasks may take just five minutes to complete. And sometimes you won’t need to get out the tools at all. You can just develop a new, energy-saving habit like using … [More]

Sustainability Roundup: Our Eco-minded Posts for 2012

Extra Space Storage facilities use expansive windows instead of traditional walls to harvest daylight.

  I’ve really enjoyed being part of Extra Space Storage’s “Storage Blog” in 2012 and talking about our sustainability efforts at Extra Space Storage.  I’m not the only one at Extra Space Storage who’s been busy writing this year. Our resourceful blogging team was very prolific. Together, we wrote hundreds of blog posts on organization, DIY, sustainability, moving, holidays and storage. Since my writing has focused on sustainability, I’ve decided to gather everything we’ve written related to this sustainability this year.  Below is a roundup of all our collective writing on sustainability in case you missed something this year. Enjoy! Corporate Responsibility Initiatives Energy Efficiency Initiatives at Extra … [More]

Our Year in Sustainability: Highlights from 2012

2012

  We’ve had a wonderful year of teamwork among our facilities management team, storage facility managers and solar power partner! In 2012, we moved forward with implementing some major projects to improve our commitment to corporate responsibility. And I’m happy to say that we saved a lot of energy by adding more solar power and tackling other energy-efficiency projects. Looking to the future, we’re exploring additional ways to be more sustainable, such as rainwater harvesting and providing more hybrid cars for our district managers.   Here are the highlights of our year in sustainability: Reduced our carbon footprint by adding solar power to more storage facilities, bringing the total … [More]

Best of the Web: Sustainability Infographics

infographic

  Infographics have the powerful ability to make complex information both compelling and easy to understand.  Although Wikipedia reports they’ve actually been around for centuries, in recent years they’ve been popularized on the internet through the power of social sharing. Infographics are a powerful tool to communicate sustainability messages enabling organizations and non-profits to educate, increase awareness, and ultimately change behavior. Given the power of infographics to share sustainability messages, these have become increasingly popular over the past few years. One of the most famous infographics of the past few years is Tracking Carbon Emissions, a piece that is both visually powerful and data rich.  Created by Stanford … [More]

Give Green, Give Local

ornament-local

  It’s here, whether you’re ready or not! Holiday shopping time. As you may have gathered from reading my other posts, I’m a rather meticulous person. That goes for my work, as well as my personal shopping habits. I prefer putting some extra thought into gifts that I give loved ones. I want to give something useful, yet more unique than what you can find sitting on most store shelves. I also like to think about my local community when I shop.   When you shop at a locally owned business instead of a national retailer, more money stays in your own community. How’s that? Locally owned businesses … [More]

Harvesting Raindrops for Landscape Use

Photo by flickr user Laffy4k

  At Extra Space Storage, finding out about our environmentally friendly programs is as easy as looking above your head. At several storage facilities, we’ve harnessed solar power to save energy, and brought daylight inside to reduce lighting costs. But now we’re looking up in a whole new way. I’m talking about capturing those raindrops that keep falling on your head!   Focusing on Top Water Users We’re currently evaluating our top ten properties that require the most water to see how rainwater harvesting can help us cut landscaping costs and save water. Taking a closer look at our highest users of water is part of our continuing … [More]

Is an Energy Star Partnership in Your Future?

open fortune cookie energy star

  I don’t want to sound too much like a fortune cookie, but here goes: Partnerships have their advantages! And, especially if you’re concerned with energy efficiency, one of the best partnerships you can have is with Energy Star – the EPA’s program to help consumers and businesses make the best choices for lowering their energy consumption. As VP of Facilities Management at Extra Space Storage, I’m busy helping to take care of more than 900 properties, but I do understand when it’s time to take a break to assess what I’m doing for energy efficiency, and make a plan for the future. And Energy Star helps make … [More]

Know When to Go with LED in Atlanta

LED-traffic-lights-atlanta

  Something special is happening to traffic lights in Atlanta. They’re being converted to LED! When it comes to sustainability, “LED” isn’t a feel-good buzz word. LED is a strong energy solution with perks.   LED signals not only use a fraction of the energy of incandescent signals, but they’re brighter, which enhances safety at intersections. Plus, LED signals last between seven to 10 years, much longer than incandescent lights! That means that Atlanta is not only saving energy, but saving maintenance costs as well.   Just how much energy is being saved with these new traffic lights in Atlanta? The Atlanta Office of Sustainability says that their LED traffic lights … [More]

Historic West Chester Helped Launch Lincoln

Lincoln Building Photo from West Chester B.I.D.

Okay Abraham Lincoln buffs, are you aware of the role that West Chester, Pennsylvania played in launching Lincoln’s run for president? While Spielberg’s “Lincoln” movie releasing this week deals with Lincoln’s final months in office, a newspaper that was once located in West Chester helped get Lincoln elected.   First Lincoln Biography The Chester County Times, a weekly Republican newspaper, published the first Lincoln biography on February 11, 1860. The biography was composed with the help of handwritten notes from Lincoln himself! This first biography of Lincoln was republished in newspapers throughout the country, and served to introduce Lincoln as a presidential candidate. Thanks to careful preservation, the Federal-style building … [More]