Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Hempstead Going Green

Hempstead Town Adopts EnergyStar® Homes Law. From the Neighborhood Network.

A Majority (7 of 13) of Long Island Towns Have Adopted the New, Stricter Energy Standard for All New Homes.

The Push Continues to Get All of Long Island’s 13 Towns to Adopt the Pioneering Law.

“Following the lead from the towns of Brookhaven and Babylon, 'green' homes will soon be blossoming in the Town of Hempstead. Thanks to the support of Hempstead Town Supervisor Kate Murray and the Hempstead Town Board,” said Neal Lewis, executive director of the Neighborhood Network. By a unanimous vote, the Town adopted a new, stricter energy conservation standard for all new homes construction in the town — at its meeting Tuesday. Hempstead is the 7th Long Island town to adopt the Law.

Energy Star Labeled Homes are nationally recognized for saving approximately 30% on home energy costs compared to conventional new homes because they feature EnergyStar® appliances, a tighter building envelope, and a test by a certified HERS Rater before a CO (certificate of occupancy) can be issued. The Energy Star Labeled Homes Program was developed by the EPA (environmental Protection Agency) and the DOE (Department of Energy). It is administered locally by LIPA (Long Island Power Authority).

The Neighborhood Network first proposed the idea of making the voluntary, nationally-recognized Energy Star Homes program, a mandatory requirement more than two years ago. Other groups (Sierra Club, LIA, Renewable Energy Long Island, Group for the East End, and LIBI) also support this legislation. Initially, builders had concerns about the legislation, but over time, they have decided to support the effort.

“Seven Long Island towns are demonstrating leadership on energy and environment issues by adopting this Law. Now we need to keep pushing to get all 13 towns to act — Long Island can lead the nation,” Lewis said. The LI towns that have not done so so far are North Hempstead, Islip, Smithtown, East Hampton, Southold, and Shelter Island.

“This measure will reduce greenhouse gas emissions that cause global warming, reduce our reliance on foreign oil, reduce the energy bills for town residents that live in the new homes for decades to come, and it will promote economic growth by pumping up the green construction industry.” He continued, “it is a win, win, win, win!”

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