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Blog entries Blog entries http://www.ecoshift.ca Thu, 18 Sep 2014 17:44:13 +0100 FeedCreator 1.7.3 Warm and Dry - Summer 2010 Weather Prediction Thus Far http://www.ecoshift.ca/warm-and-dry-summer-2010-weather-prediction-thus-far.html <p> </p><br/><p>After two years of wet, cool and grey summer (2008 and 2009), senior climatologist David Phillips with Environment Canada has said that the region should be returning to seasonably hot, hazy, humid and dry days this June, July and August.</p><br/><p>The official forecast doesn't come out until June 1st but indications at this time are that it will be a dry summer compared to the last 2 years.</p><br/><p> "There's just two words: Warm and dry," said Phillips</p><br/><p>If this is the case foRead More... Geoff Jones Mon, 19 Apr 2010 20:01:52 +0100 Water ECOShift and the Ontario Green Home Competition http://www.ecoshift.ca/ecoshift-and-the-ontario-green-home-competition.html <p>If you haven't heard about the Home Sweet Home or Ontario Green Home competition in Ontario you need to check it out.  ECOShift made donations to the project and is happy to be a participant in the water conservation solutions incorporated into the Founding Production Home.    As a result of our support this home includes a greywater recycling system which re-uses bath/shower water for flushing toilets, and a rainwater harvesting system for outdoor irrigation.</p><br/><p>For more information aboRead More... Geoff Jones Wed, 14 Apr 2010 19:23:01 +0100 General ecoENERGY Retrofit Program Stops Abruptly http://www.ecoshift.ca/ecoenergy-retrofit-program-stops-abruptly.html <p>Out of the blue, with no forewarning, the ecoENERGY Retrofit program announced that it is no longer accepting pre-retrofit applications as of March 31, 2010.   Where did that come from?</p><br/><p>So what does this mean?</p><br/><p>If you have already booked or had your pre-retrofit audit you can still qualify for grants providing you make the updates to your home and have your follow-up audit by March 31, 2011.  However, for anyone who was planning to have a pre-retrofit audit it seems the federalRead More... Geoff Jones Thu, 01 Apr 2010 19:43:48 +0100 Energy Earth Hour 2010 http://www.ecoshift.ca/earth-hour-2010.html <p>Tomorrow (March 27, 2010) is Earth Hour day, a chance for people around the world to make a statement of support regarding the importance of the health of our planet.  Every hour, people all aroudn the world are taking steps to reduce their impact on the environment and our resources. Whether you walk or ride your bike to work, lower the temperature in your house at night,  or hang your laundry out to dry, each little step makes a difference.   Share your story, inspire others and leave a comRead More... Geoff Jones Fri, 26 Mar 2010 18:47:59 +0100 General Energy Repair or Replace - What do you think? http://www.ecoshift.ca/repair-or-replace-what-do-you-think.html <p>In today's society a lot of items are just to expensive to get fixed, or are just as cheap to buy new so it creates a bit of a tough decision for many people who are faced with considering to repair something or replace it.&nbsp; I think the area that this is most common is with electronics.&nbsp;<br/>This blog post is a little different from most of my posts but i've been in this situation several times and wanted to share my experience and get your thoughts too.&nbsp;<br/><br />Recently our microwaRead More... Geoff Jones Wed, 04 Nov 2009 17:30:44 +0100 General Ontario Tire Stewardship (OTS) Program http://www.ecoshift.ca/ontario-tire-stewardship-ots-program.html <br/><p style="MARGIN: 12pt 0in 3pt"><img src="http://www.ecoshift.ca/images/71/tires.jpg" style="float: left; border: #ffffff thick solid;" />A new program just launched this month in Ontario.  Previously when you purchased a new set of tires for your vehicle (on or off road) you had to pay a disposal fee for the old tires you were getting rid of.   However, with the launch of the new Ontario Tire Stewardship (OTS) Program that is no longer necessary as long as your old tires are dropped off at a Read More... Geoff Jones Fri, 04 Sep 2009 13:29:37 +0100 General New Greywater Standards For California http://www.ecoshift.ca/new-greywater-standards-for-california.html <br/><p>Earlier this month California, often known for leading the way in pioneering legislative change to help protect the environment, released new updated greywater standards.  I thought it would be worthwhile to give you a quick update on what has happened in California as more and more states and provinces are looking at each other to see what to do as we realize more and more each day the importance of water conservation and re-use and the need to make changes.</p><br/><p>The California BuildingRead More... Geoff Jones Wed, 26 Aug 2009 20:21:29 +0100 Greywater Recycling Count Me In Ontario Challenge http://www.ecoshift.ca/count-me-in-ontario-challenge.html <br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/><br/>It's on ...!<br/><p>The Count Me In! Community Challenge, taking place between now and August 14, the anniversary of the North American blackout in 2003, is now underway.</p><br/><p>The Count Me In! Community Challenge is comprised of two challenges:</p><br/><br/>The highest percentage drop in electricity consumption on August 14, and <br/>The highest per capita participation in the Count Me In! pledge drive between now and August 14. <br/><br/><p>Results will be announced at the AMO Annual Conference in Ottawa in ARead More... Geoff Jones Wed, 12 Aug 2009 05:00:00 +0100 General Energy Wind Turbine Power Generation Basics http://www.ecoshift.ca/wind-turbine-power-generation-basics.html <br/><p>If you read the papers or keep on top of alternative energy news I’m sure that you have seen at least one article, if not many, in the past months about wind farms and/or wind turbine technology being installed in residential applications or in large scale power generation projects.  Either way, wind turbines are rapidly being installed in many parts of the world to generate clean electricity.  Let’s take a look at the basic principles of Wind Turbines and how they work.</p><br/><p>Overview</pRead More... Geoff Jones Tue, 04 Aug 2009 15:21:33 +0100 Wind Energy Bottled Water - Share Your Thoughts http://www.ecoshift.ca/bottled-water-share-your-thoughts.html <p style="MARGIN: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal"><img width="171" src="http://www.ecoshift.ca/images/71/bottleh2o.jpg" height="151" style="FLOAT: left" />The discussion on bottled water certainly generates a lot of different and very strong opinions.  I think the best way to form an opinion is to gather as much information and as many viewpoints as possible.  Only after we have shared our views and listened objectively to the opinions and views of others can we truly work toward a better solutioRead More... Geoff Jones Tue, 21 Jul 2009 11:53:33 +0100 Water General Waste Electrical & Electronics Equipment (WEEE) Recycling http://www.ecoshift.ca/waste-electrical-a-electronics-equipment-weee-recycling.html Recently, someone I know purchased an LCD TV at a local electronics shop and was charged an Electronic Handling Fee.&nbsp; I haven't purchased any electronics for a while so I wasn't aware what this was.&nbsp; So, I decided to look into it a little more and thought that maybe I'm not the only one who wasn't aware of the WEEE program that Ontario launched on April 1, 2009.&nbsp; Did you know about it?&nbsp; I have to admit that even reading the local paper almost daily for the past year and beingRead More... Geoff Jones Sun, 12 Jul 2009 20:16:39 +0100 General Greywater Recycling Benefits in Rural Applications http://www.ecoshift.ca/greywater-recycling-benefits-in-rural-applications.html <p>Many people think of greywater recycling as something that is only for people who live in the city and pay water and wastewater charges to their municipality.&nbsp; However, there are several benefits that can also be realised for those who live in rural settings.&nbsp; </p><p>Let's take a quick look at some of the potential benefits in rural applications that I've come across from speaking with rural homeowners who are dealing with issues and concerns and looking at greywater recycling as paRead More... Geoff Jones Fri, 10 Jul 2009 13:37:53 +0100 Greywater Recycling Green Roof Overview http://www.ecoshift.ca/green-roof-overview.html <img align="left" width="221" src="http://www.ecoshift.ca/images/71/homes-green-roof.jpg" height="134" />With continued growth and interest in green building technologies, green roofs have been gaining more interest and exposure as a result of the benefits they can provide. A green roof is essentially the roof of a building/structure that has vegetation covering a portion or the entire roof surface. Green roofs can be designed as a part of new buildings or retrofit to existing buildings as well.Read More... Geoff Jones Fri, 03 Jul 2009 00:37:38 +0100 General Energy Solar Space Heating Overview http://www.ecoshift.ca/solar-space-heating-overview.html There are basically two key types of solar heating systems; solar passive and solar active.&nbsp; Solar passive systems are typically less complex as they make use of solar energy without the need for additional electrical components and technology.&nbsp; This typically makes them less costly but in many cases passive solar heating may not be effective for existing buildings if the current orientation of the building cannot take advantage of solar energy.&nbsp; Solar active systems are a little Read More... Geoff Jones Thu, 25 Jun 2009 13:48:09 +0100 Solar Rain Barrel Basics - Part 2 http://www.ecoshift.ca/rain-barrel-basics-part-2.html <p>Let's continue with some ideas that may be helpful in putting together a very simple rainwater system using rainbarrels.</p><br/>Multiple Barrels for Additional Capacity<br/><p>Keep in mind that most homes typically have at least 1 downspout (or more) on each side depending on the home design. A single 50-60 gallon (190-225 liter) is effective for light irrigation but often is insufficient for larger gardens or homes with extensive plant life. The addition of more barrels, however, is a relatively Read More... Geoff Jones Sun, 21 Jun 2009 14:11:15 +0100 Rainwater Harvesting Rain Barrel Basics - Part 1 http://www.ecoshift.ca/rain-barrel-basics-part-1.html <p><img align="left" width="135" src="http://www.ecoshift.ca/images/71/Rain Barrel - Color - Terracotta.jpg" height="228" style="width: 105px; height: 183px;" />One of the most basic and common forms of rainwater harvesting is the Rain Barrel. All over North America ever increasing water demands are putting more and more stress on our water systems. In the summer months the additional demand for water due to irrigation and other outdoor uses is pushing some water treatment facilities, and groundRead More... Geoff Jones Fri, 19 Jun 2009 12:58:47 +0100 Rainwater Harvesting Solar Pool Heating - Part 2 http://www.ecoshift.ca/solar-pool-heating-part-2.html <p>In Part 1 of the Solar Pool Heating series we provided an overview of the basic operation of a solar pool heating system. In Part 2 we are now going to focus on why a Solar Pool Heating system might be a good choice for you.</p><br/><p>Solar pool heating is a great way to get off of fossil fuels and save money while keeping your pool warm during the summer months. According to Natural Resources Canada the cost of a Solar Pool Heating system is very competitive with that of a natural gas heating Read More... Geoff Jones Fri, 12 Jun 2009 15:05:11 +0100 Solar Solar Pool Heating - Part 1 http://www.ecoshift.ca/solar-pool-heating-part-1.html <p style="text-align: center;">Solar pool heating systems are becoming more and more popular due to their simple design and since they are very cheap to operate as the suns energy is free.  In addition, since they don't use fossil fuels for heating and have a fairly long life expectancy due simple design.  In Part 1 of the Solar Pool Heating series we are going to discuss the basics of how these systems work. </p><br/>Open Loop Heating System<br/><p>The simplest and most common system for seasonal pooRead More... Geoff Jones Wed, 10 Jun 2009 16:27:47 +0100 Solar Rainwater Harvesting Can Help Protect Our Water http://www.ecoshift.ca/rainwater-harvesting-can-help-protect-our-water.html <p>Many people look to Rainwater Harvesting primarily due to the benefits it provides in helping to meet irrigation demand and reduce dependency on municipal or well water supplies primarly during the summer months when outdoor water use increases. It also allows people to continue to irrigate there plants, shrubs, gardens, vegetables etc. during drought when watering bans are in place. These are all great benefits that we can all realize by using rainwater harvesting but there is another benefiRead More... Geoff Jones Thu, 04 Jun 2009 18:24:03 +0100 Water Save Water & Money with a Low-Flow Showerhead http://www.ecoshift.ca/save-water-money-with-a-low-flow-showerhead.html <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">We often talk about many more advanced technologies in the water conservation area but it is certainly worth repeating that there are some simple solutions that can also have a significant impact on how much water we use.&nbsp;&nbsp; The low-flow showerhead is one of those technologies.&nbsp; </p><p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">&nbsp;</p><p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt" class="MsoNormal">Shower heads before 1992 used approximately 5Read More... Geoff Jones Tue, 02 Jun 2009 15:16:55 +0100 Water