If you’ve been closely following along with our blog and learning more about energy and efficiency, THANK YOU!!! We’re happy to have you here and appreciate you taking the time out of your day to read each post. Please note that the blogs will be offline for a couple of weeks as we work on a few standard website edits, but we’ll be back soon and ready to discuss the summer heat and how best to mitigate it’s effects on your energy bill right after that. So, as sitcoms said in the 90’s, stay tuned!
This is the big week! I hope you’re ready to plant a tree, build a raised bed, or go for a hike to celebrate this lovely earth in all her splendor! If you’re looking for more indoor activities this weekend however, be sure to check out this Paper Mache activity for Earth Day and learn how to reuse old materials in your arts and crafts projects:
- April 18, 11:30AM CST – Earth Day Papier Mache Sculpture With Artist Kim Baise, https://www.eventbrite.com/c/virtual-earth-day-activities-ccbfwgyd/
Let’s take a deep dive into today’s calendar events and the week ahead:
- April 14, 12:00PM CST – Sustainable Cities, https://www.eventbrite.com/e/the-earth-convention-sustainable-cities-tickets-145492432783?aff=ebdssbeditorialcollection&keep_tld=1 – for those of you living in an urban area that want to learn more about creating a sustainable environment for yourself, your family, and your neighbors, tune in today in just a few minutes!
- April 14, 6:00PM CST – Earth Day Teacher’s Workshop, https://www.eventbrite.com/e/earth-day-teacher-workshop-4142021-tickets-148009356971?aff=ebdssbeditorialcollection – perhaps you have a classroom full of kids, or even just a few at home that you want to teach the importance of Earth Day to, but are not sure how. Well, look no further! This workshop includes fun activities for grades K-12 to learn more about Earth Day and build their curiosity in the field of environmental sustainability.
- April 15, 12:00PM CST – Earth Day Every Day, https://www.eventbrite.com/e/earth-day-every-day-tickets-146763129471?aff=ebdssbeditorialcollection – to celebrate Earth Day’s 50th year educating and inspiring us to do more for our environment, the Dallas Environmental Quality & Sustainability and Dallas Public Library present this online series of classes geared towards celebration and education. There are several events in this series that touch on subjects ranging from gardening and landscaping, to Climate Change and what the city of Dallas is doing to prevent it, to the Ozone and how to protect it – so come check them out, starting tomorrow at noon!
- April 15, 1:30PM CST – Sing for Earth Day, https://www.eventbrite.com/e/sing-for-earth-day-tickets-142706869087?aff=ebdssbeditorialcollection&keep_tld=1 – tired of your same old workout routine? Well, we’ve got you covered! This Earth Day event centers around signing, moving, and celebrating Earth Day by uplifting your spirits and your voice in celebration.
- April 15, 6:30PM CST – Growing a Dye Garden with Aaron Sanders Head, https://www.eventbrite.com/e/growing-a-dye-garden-with-aaron-sanders-head-tickets-144701158059?aff=ebdssbeditorialcollection – this series focuses on gardening native Texas plants with color and natural dyes in mind! Aaron will walk you through how to grow and cultivate these colorful plants, as well as harvesting and safely storing them for your next arts and crafts project. If you’ve ever read up on the harmful toxic waste produced by chemical dye companies, and wondered what you could do to prevent it, you won’t want to miss this series!
- April 17, 6:00PM CST – Growing at Home (Indoors or Outdoors), https://www.eventbrite.com/e/learn-hydroponics-growing-at-home-indoors-or-outdoors-earth-day-tickets-146153018613?aff=ebdssbeditorialcollection – ever wanted to learn more about hydroponics? Well, you’re at the right place! This course will walk you through how to grow your own healthy garden indoors, and all-in-one system sales will go towards planting trees for Earth Day!
Keep an eye out for more events to come this week and next as we ramp up to Earth Day 2021!
Early Earthly Events
As promised, this month we’ll be exploring more celebrations of Earth Day around the world. For just a few additional ideas on what you can do to get involved this year leading up to the big day, check out the following list of virtual Earth Day activities from eventbrite.com: https://www.eventbrite.com/c/virtual-earth-day-activities-ccbfwgyd/ – many of these events are free, though some are not – so check out your favorites and be sure to add reminders to your calendar because there are several starting this week! I’ll continue to post reminders for this link throughout the month so you don’t forget. Happy Early Earth Day!
Happy Easter 2021 everyone! I hope you had a fun-filled Sunday and a restful weekend. Whether or not you celebrate the holiday of Easter, I hope you still ate some delicious food, and were the first to the cascarones every time. These days, particularly during COVID, are sacred – time spent with family, celebrating the continuous growth and development of the little ones, celebrating milestones in your lives, and giving thanks to each brand new day. While this time period will certainly be marked with difficulty, I hope you’re able to take stock in all those around you that continue to bring you joy none-the-less. So with that I say, Happy/Hoppy Easter to you all, and see you next week!
Since today is the first day of April, Earth Day is just around the corner – April 22, 2021 – so it’s time to start picking out a tree, and a spot to put it! Even if you don’t have any space in your own yard for planting, or don’t want the shade cover, there are plenty of Earth Day activities to plan for around this great state. For example, if you’re feeling active, there is an “Earth Day Challenge Run/Walk” tomorrow – you just sign up, log your miles, and see if you can run the distance of the equator, collectively of course (https://stayhappening.com/e/2021-earth-day-challenge-run-walk-carrollton-E3LUS9MUSXEL); or, if you’d like to learn more about Earth restoration projects, feel free to sign up for one of the many events MSU is hosting this month virtually, here: https://wichitafallsarts.org/event/earth-day-2021-msu-texas/2021-04-07/; whereas if you’re in the Round Rock area on April 24th, the Parks and Recreation department is hosting an Earth Day Festival at Old Settlers Park (check it out here: https://www.roundrocktexas.gov/departments/parks-and-recreation/special-events/earth-day-festival/). If your address is in one of the many Houston area-codes, you’re in luck – the Houston Arboretum & Nature Center is holding an Earth Day Celebration on April 17th – learn more about it here: https://houstonarboretum.org/event/earth-day-celebration/. For those in San Antonio, don’t fret – there’s plenty going on in your fare city on April 24th as well, including the Planet Proctors Day Camp at the Witt Museum (https://sanantonio.kidsoutandabout.com/content/planet-protectors-day-camp). If you have another event or celebration in mind, and you’d like to share it, feel free to add it in the comments section! I thank you in advance for your contributions.
If you’re like me, and thought that the Spring Equinox fell on March 21st every year, you would be wrong for 2021! I was waiting to post about it until today, however the first official day of spring was yesterday, March 20, 2021.
What is the spring equinox? It’s a sign that the days will continue to start getting longer and longer, but for a more scientific answer, check out the following link (https://www.space.com/vernal-equinox-2021-spring-arrival-equal-day-night) which states, “Spring will officially arrive on Saturday morning (March 20) with the occurrence of the vernal equinox. That occurs when the sun will be positioned directly over the Earth’s equator at 09:37 Universal Time; 5:37 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time or 2:37 a.m. Pacific Daylight Time. At that particular moment, the sun will appear to shine directly overhead from a point 5 miles (8 kilometers) south of Meru, in Kenya; a city of approximately 241,000 residents.
From that moment, until the occurrence of the summer solstice on June 20, the sun will appear to migrate northward and the length of daylight in the Northern Hemisphere will continue to increase. As the altitude of the midday sun gets progressively higher, the arc that it takes across the sky will also increase. On the date of the equinox, the sun will rise due east and will set due west.”
What does this mean for solar customers? Now is the time to go solar and start saving on your monthly electricity bill! With summer just around the corner, and longer days, full of sunshine, those solar panels are poised to help support the high energy demand on the grid, and keep your house cool even when we get to those triple digit days. Call us today for a free quote!
The weekend is here, and the weather forecast looks fabulous. Time to break out the shorts and tank tops, go outside, and have some fun. Don’t forget the sunblock too, now that our famous Texas heat is back. The end of the week is a great time to do some gardening and other home improvements, catch up on chores, read your favorite book, or go out and meet up with friends and family. How will you take advantage of the weather this weekend?
Now that we’ve got the same basic understanding of what global warming means, and where the term came from (thanks to yesterday’s blog post), we can explore the roles activists and climate conservationists have played in protecting us from it.
The phrase “global warming” may be fairly new, but the concept of protecting the environment is anything but new, and has been around for centuries! Native Americans have well-established a legacy of conservation, and thanks to the hard-fought preservation of their heritage, modern-day Americans can learn from their good example – check out the following article from The Wildlife Society for a few ideas: https://wildlife.org/a-tribal-model-of-wildlife-stewardship-from-the-wildlife-professional/.
John Muir, while originally from Dunbar, Scotland, emigrated to the United States and “explored the North American continent by foot, walking thousands of miles until he eventually settled in California. There, he fell in love with Yosemite Valley and the Sierra Nevada Mountains” (https://onetreeplanted.org/blogs/stories/earth-day-environmental-heroes), and “In 1890, due in large part to a series of articles he published in Century magazine, U.S. Congress created Yosemite National Park. Muir was also involved in the creation of the Sequoia, Mount Rainier, Petrified Forest, and Grand Canyon National Parks.” Thanks to his efforts in conservation, he founded the Sierra Club which lives on today over a hundred years later, fighting to protect the natural resources and equal access to environmental resources (https://www.sierraclub.org/lands-air-water-wildlife). Ironically, John Muir was also part of the inspiration for Theodore Roosevelt’s conservationist movement. During his presidency, he was able to protect “230 million acres of public lands” and “Much of that land – 150 millions acres – was set aside as national forests” (https://www.nps.gov/thro/learn/historyculture/theodore-roosevelt-and-conservation.htm), among many other national treasures we still enjoy today.
Thanks to these historic leaders, the environmental conservation movement had begun. Even without the science and technology to measure the effects of climate change in the early twentieth century, humans recognized the importance of protecting our natural resources. This movement gave rise to the Federal Water Pollution Control Act of 1948 which would later become the Clean Water Act of 1972 (https://www.epa.gov/laws-regulations/history-clean-water-act), the Clean Air Act of of 1963 (https://www.epa.gov/clean-air-act-overview/clean-air-act-text#:~:text=The%20Clean%20Air%20Act%20is,has%20made%20several%20minor%20changes.), and later, in 1970, Senator Gaylord Nelson founded the very first Earth Day which is now celebrated all over the world! With April 22nd right round the corner, how will you celebrate?
Well, we made it to March! Hopefully this means we’re out of the woods and on our way to spring and sunny weather. For a few interesting facts about the third month of the year, check out the following: https://www.almanac.com/content/month-march-holidays-fun-facts-folklore.
March is a great month to start thinking about home improvements. With the crazy weather subsiding, and before the scorching temperatures begin, it’s a great time to go solar before those energy bills climb back up again. With the winter storm behind us, some people may still be working on simply fixing the storm damage that was done in February! If this is you, please know we are here to help, and there are a ton of resources for you to make this happen, such as:
- Apply for the FEMA disaster assistance program: https://www.fema.gov/press-release/20210220/texas-survivors-affected-winter-weather-can-apply-federal-disaster
- Upon applying for FEMA assistance, you will also be asked to submit an application for the SBA Disaster Assistance loan: https://www.sba.gov/funding-programs/disaster-assistance
- If your home/business was not impacted by the storm, but you’re still interested in making home improvements, a HELOC loan may be right for you. Learn more here: https://www.investopedia.com/mortgage/heloc/
- Then, if you’re only interested in repairing your roof or going solar, we’ve partnered with financial institutions Sunlight Financial, Sunnova, and Mosaic to help you out.
For more information about any of these options, please give us a call today!