Blog Banner

An Illinois River Almanac

Jason Haupt's Energy and Environment Blog
Energy

The Alternative Energy Run Down

Alternative energy gets a lot of time in many of the discussions I have had recently. Many of them are extensions of other topics, but somehow the conversation is moved to some form of alternative energy. Several of them start out with "But how does this type of energy affect (fill in the blank)?" With this in mind, here are the most popular forms of alternative energy production with some pros...

Read More >

Merry Christmas

Wishing everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy Holidays.  I hope that your Christmas is filled with family friends and good cheer.  Make your Holidays green this year....

Read More >

Double Strike

Climate vs. Weather

There has been a lot of talk about climate change and its effect on the different weather patterns and how it is creating "super storms." Much of this talk is spurred from the Paris Climate Change Conference that was attended by many of the world leaders. This has also caused many public figures and politicians to weigh-in with their opinions. I have seen dozens of articles that have either sup...

Read More >

Disposal of Electrical Items

If you have bought light bulbs recently, you probably saw a dizzying array of choices. For many there is a great deal of confusion on what to choose, how to choose, and which light is right for you. If you would like more info on choosing a light bulb, please read An Illinois River Almanac blog at http://web.extension....

Read More >

Water, Water everywhere…You are Using More than You Think.

Water is a resource that we often take for granted. We simply turn on a tap and have fresh clean water to drink, bath in, and have fun in during the summer. Our feelings about water change. It is never the same week to week or month to month. But water is a finite resource and also accounts for a large portion of utility bills.  There are several ways that you can reduce the amount of water you...

Read More >

FlameP

The fire inside

Posted by Jason Haupt - Energy

I could spend hours sitting in front of a fire. I love everything about a good fire - the smell of the wood as it burns, the soft roar and periodic pops, and the way the flames dance in the hearth.  It is mesmerizing.  However, that fire does more than just entertain. It provides heat and can make any room more comfortable and welcoming. Fires are cozy and can provide a lot of heat for...

Read More >

The weather outside…

Posted by Jason Haupt - Energy

The weather outside is changing.  Some like the cooler weather and some would like to avoid the cold and get back to balmy summer days.  Whether it is warm or cool having an efficient home is the best way to keep more money in your pocket.  Now is a great time to think about how to make your home more efficient.  The days are finally cool enough to have your house open while you work on project...

Read More >

A Little En”Light”enment

Posted by Jason Haupt - Energy

If you are like most people you take your light for granted.  When it begins to get dark you flip a switch and you have light.  Recently there has been a lot to think about when it comes to lighting.  You may have noticed that there are a lot of choices when you go to purchase a new light bulb.  This is a result of a law that passed in 2007 which outlined the gradual phase out of the tungsten-f...

Read More >

Fuel Economy Part 3

Posted by Jason Haupt - Energy

The final type of car that we are going to talk about is the Electric/ Hybrid. For most people, this is the car for the "Environmentalist", or the "Tree Huggers". These are going to be very efficient and will be the most fuel efficient cars in certain situations. Both of these cars are most efficient and make the most sense if you drive in the city. Keeping this in mind, we will discuss each ty...

Read More >

Fuel Economy Part 2

Last week, we looked at gas as a fuel for your car. This week we are going to look at diesel. Diesel engines have a bad rap in the US. Diesels are loud, dirty, and expensive. Diesel has come a long way and is a very good choice of fuel. Diesel engines are significantly more efficient than gas engines - 25% to 40% more efficient. They are also very clean. New emissions regulations have made thes...

Read More >

Fuel Economy Part 1

You may be in the market for a new car or possibly in the near future. So I thought I would talk about some of the things to consider when looking at a new car. There are so many features from which to choose that sometimes it is a little confusing. Since this is an environmental and energy blog, there are a few things that I would like to clarify. So let's start with the fuel choice. There are...

Read More >

The Air you Breath

Over the past couple of weeks, I have been talking about energy efficiency and the need to reduce the air exchange in your home to increase efficiency. To make your home as efficient as possible, this is a very important step to take. The less warm air that is allowed to escape in the winter or the less hot air that is allowed to enter the home in the summer means that you spend less conditioni...

Read More >

Let there be Light

Posted by Jason Haupt - Energy

I love the fall. Football has started, the weather is cooling off, the leaves are beginning to turn, and the days are getting shorter. With the days getting shorter, that means we are going to be using the lights in our homes more often. If you have been to the store and looked at light bulbs lately, you will know that there seems to be an endless choice of light bulbs from which to choose. So...

Read More >

Fuel Economy Tips

Posted by Jason Haupt - Energy

This week, I think we should talk about fuel usage in our cars. For me, one of my favorite things to do in the fall is drive with the windows rolled down. The smell and feel of fall gets me excited to take a drive and enjoy the weather. That being said, here are a few tips to make sure you are getting the best fuel economy you can out of your car. Maintain your car . Thi...

Read More >

Windows

Posted by Jason Haupt - Energy

Let's talk about windows this week. Windows are an important part of your home. They let light in, provide ventilation, and add to the general aesthetic of the home. Older windows can also be a problem for efficiency in your home. Windows can account for 10% to 25% of your heating costs by leaking heat out says the US Department of Energy. During the summer months, hot air from sunny windows ca...

Read More >

The thermostat is the key

Posted by Jason Haupt - Energy

This going to be the first in a series of entries that will focus on improving the efficiency of your home and, in turn, save you some money on your utility bills. By increasing the efficiency in your home, you can reduce the load on the current utility providers. This is much cheaper than building a new power plant, not to mention it is better for air quality as well. As I am sure you...

Read More >

A Little Efficiency Help

Posted by Jason Haupt - Energy

Being energy efficient can be a little expensive. All of the different ways to make your home more efficient can add up very quickly. For those that are Ameren customers there is a little help out there. Ameren has several rebate programs to help make your home more efficient. They have rebates for small projects like putting in a programmable thermostat to the big projects like improving your...

Read More >

Slow the Flow

Posted by Jason Haupt - Energy

Summer is great.  The days are longer, the sun shines and you can be outside enjoying nature.  Summer also means that utility bills are higher.  Hot weather means that your Air Conditioner has to work overtime to keep you comfortable.  So what can be done to help reduce your utility bills not only in the summer but also in the winter?  Reduce the air exchange rate in your home.  There are sever...

Read More >