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Temple Energy & Environment Committee
The Energy Committee Mission:
To reduce GHG emissions, save energy and advise the Select Board on steps toward that end.
1) To "power-down" all sectors of our community by increasing municipal & residential energy efficiency through conservation and retrofitting;
2) To switch our municipal energy usage to renewable energy sources in order to decrease financial, health and environmental costs to our community;
3) To help our community become more conscious of the impact of human activity on the environment;
4) To encourage ride sharing, car pooling, the use of public transportation and healthy choices such as bicycling and walking;
5) To increase awareness of the benefits to our community of re-using and recycling;
6) To provide information on energy-saving weatherization for homeowners
7) To defend and protect our community's open spaces and ecological health.
TEEC Activities 2007-2018
and Merged TEEC/Renewable Energy Task Force Activities
RGGI - Funded Deep Energy Efficiency Retrofit for Temple's Municipal Building, Fire Dept. and Mansfield Library - 2009-2010
The RGGI - funded Upgrades and Deep Energy Efficiency Retrofit for Temple's Municipal Building, Fire Department, and Mansfield Library were a complete and extraordinary success!
Exhaustive data analysis compiled for the FD and Municipal Building fuel usage for heating the buildings dropped from 2010-2011 by 85% !
Here are some of the details from the retrofit:
Installation of insulated R40 cool-vent roofing
Our PowerPoint with photos from the retrofit is linked here --
Actions & Activities of the Energy Committee 2007 - 2018 and of
the Combined TEEC/Renewable Energy Task Force 2018-Present
- PSNH Municipal Energy Efficiency Lighting Upgrades
- Initiated Recycling Program for major town events (on
- Educational Booth at Harvest Festival (ongoing - annually)
- Municipal Energy Inventories conducted for all departments to collect data on energy usage and costs
- Energy Audits of Municipal Building/Fire Department
- and Mansfield Library
- Energy Audit of Temple's Master Plan and Zoning Ordinances
- Free Weatherization Workshop presented for Residents
- Free Home Weatherization for Qualified Residents
- by TEEC Volunteers
- RGGI Grant Proposal Development and Submittal
- Ongoing collaborative work with Temple Planning & Zoning
- Boards following the recommendations of Master Plan and
- Zoning Ordinance Audit
- RGGI Grant Awarded to Temple in the Amount of $332,100
- Launch of the TEEC educational website - www.teec.info
- Harvest Festival Special Exhibit in Town Hall honoring Temple's grant and receipt of the 2009 Climate Champion Award
- Oct. 24 - created a "350" Campaign Event in Town Hall; joining thousands of cities around the world in raising awareness about the need to reduce the level of CO2 in the atmosphere back to 350 parts per million- it has climbed to 387 ppm -- an unhealthy level for mammals,particularly human life.
- Conducted a "Neighbors Helping Neighbors" gathering on November 16 to prioritize the most desired action items for Temple and the Monadnock region to develop based on the recommendations of the NH Climate Action Plan.
- Oversight of the retrofitting projects at the Municipal/Fire Department buildings and Mansfield Library - ongoing
- Administration of the Recycling Program at Temple Elementary School - ongoing
- Free Weatherizations for Temple residents who are fuel-assistance qualified - ongoing.
- Adoption of the Energy Chapter for the Temple Master Plan - completed May 5, 2010
Summer-Fall of 2010:
- Facilitate, support and oversee the retrofitting projects of our Municipal Building, Fire Department and Library.
- Community Energy and Environmental Education at Temple's Annual Harvest Festival - September 26, 2010
- 10-10-10 global work party events: 1) installation of solar-powered motion detector for Temple Historical Society building and 2) Booth at Milford/Amherst Speakers' Event featuring Temple's Energy Committee activities.
- Button-Up NH free home weatherization workshop sponsored by TEEC for residents and neighboring towns - November 20th 10:00AM at Temple Town Hall.
Winter-Spring of 2011:
- TEEC's Free Home Weatherization Program has been expanded and is available for any resident, based on a simple screening. Call Bev Edwards at 878-3227 for additional information.
- The Temple Energy Challenge (Carbon Challenge) was launched on February 9 and ran until May 9, 2011 to help residents save household energy and money. Temple was engaged in a friendly competition with Rindge, Jaffrey, and Bennington to see which town could produce the highest percentage of household participants to take the challenge at www.myenergyplan.net. The winning town was announced at the end of June. Temple won the competition with 15 % of our residents taking the Challenge. Cumulatively they will save $35,656 and 255,092 tons of C02 in the first year.
- June, Open House Celebration for the RGGI funded completed energy efficiency retrofit for Mansfield Library, the Fire Department and Municipal Building. We filled Town Hall with displays of photographs from the retrofit; gave a Powerpoint presentation on the process of the work-- its surprises, most interesting details, the installation of equpment upgrades, and all-important aggressive air sealing and insulation work; gave tours of the buildings; and celebrated its success with pizza and drinks with a large crowd of residents.
Summer-Fall of 2011:
- Ice Cream Social! 200 residents came to celebrate our victory in Temple's 4-town Carbon Challenge Competition on Sept. 24 at our Town Hall. It was a high-spirited afternoon with everyone enjoying 5 flavors of ice cream and frozen yogurt donated by Stonyfield Farm and Temple's own Connolly Brother's Dairy. There were also tables filled with energy saving hand-outs, information on climate change in NH and the Northeast, literature on home energy savings measures and a table display by CVTC - the Contoocook Valley Transportation Company which supports energy saving transportation for our region with ride-share and car pooling programs.
- TEEC was invited to provide the Special Exhibit at Temple's Annual Harvest Festival on Sept. 25. It highlighted the demonstration of a solar-powered truck, a solar thermal hot water demonstration, displays and a DVD on the energy efficiency retrofits of Temple's municipal buildings, and helpful hints on energy efficiency measures for households.
- Our booth on the Village Green for the Harvest Festival highlighted the newly forming regional initiative for residential solar hot water installations and home weatherization program based on the "barn raiser"/neighbors-helping-neighbors model, as practiced by the Plymouth Area Renewable Energy Initiative (PAREI). 30 residents filled out a sign-up sheet indicating their interest in the program.
- TEEC is actively participating in the creation of a new regional initiative for cost effective, low cost solar hot water installations and hands-on home weatherization trainings. The Monadnock Energy Resources Initiative will use the neighbors-helping-neighbors, barn-raiser model of professional and non-professional volunteers to illiminate labor costs.for these projects. It is in the process of establishing its foundation and plans for a spring/summer launch.
- TEEC strongly supported the establishment of a local driveway snow plowing cooperative to conduct energy-saving, emissions-reducing, consecutive plowing for adjacent houses throughout the town.
- TEEC has been actively involved in the Planning Board's process of creating a town ordinance for large commercial wind projects in Temple. Our members have visited the large wind installation in Lempster, NH, conducted interviews with residents there, done research on the raptor migrations over the prospective site for Temple, gathered data on the possible effects of audible and inaudible sound from large scale turbines, and presented reports from many perspectives to the board.
- TEEC voted to support the efforts of the Monadnock Energy Resources Initiative (MERI), a newly formed, grass-roots non-profit organization that will bring low-cost solar hot water installations and hands-on home weatherizations to southwestern NH using the "barn-raiser", neighbors-helping-neighbors model.
- TEEC supported and participated in the 201 Button Up NH Weatherization Workshop on March 3 at the UU Church in Milford. Between 65-70 participants attended Andy Duncan's excellent training.
- TEEC will welcome a PAREI training for MERI volunteers in the "barn-raiser" style solar hot water installations, beginning at a home in Temple this summer.
- TEEC voted to create a subcommittee to focus on transitioning Temple to a more adaptive, thriving community in the face of economic, climate and weather crises, peak oil, detrimental fossil fuel extraction methods, and volatile fossel fuel prices. Cathy Joly was elected to lead the sub-committee, It's first meeting took place on May 30. 17 residents came with excellent suggestions which they are anxious to manifest. They chose a name and sub-title for the group. It will be called the Temple Community Collaborative with the by-line, "Rebuilding the Local Economy". It will initiate programs to share equipment, share skills through classes and bartering, plan a film series to educate residents on a number of subjects, create a more active ride-sharing program, support our farmers and Farmer's Market, etc. Folks with skills in canning, bread baking, sewing, simple automachanics, simple carpentry, organic gardening, etc. are encouraged to come forward and participate..
- On Good Roads Day, TEEC did all the sorting of recyclables, again, and then recycled the whole load at our Wilton Recycling Center.
- We will provide recycling for the Fund-raising Rock n' Roll Concert and Dance at Town Hall on June 16, to support the purchase of trees to replace the ones which had to be removed on the Village Green.
- TEEC will be recycling all the glass, plastic and aluminum cans for the 4th of July events, and all of the music festivals this summer and has signed up to do all of the recycling for next fall's Harvest Festival, as usual.
- On July 19th, TEEC introduced a special pricing offer for solar pv installations with a presentation from Mark Weissflog of KW Management. 30 people filled the Town Hall Annex to learn about this grassroots effort to bring more affordable solar electric power to Monadnock region's residents.
- July 29 - TEEC's new subcommittee, the Temple Community Collaborative, presented a free Showing of "Queen of the Sun"7 PM at Town Hall. This film was about the plight of the honeybees and solutions to help with their world-wide crisis of colony collapse. Temple bee keepers, Peter and Barbara Thorngren shared their experiences and advised the audience on how they can help the local bee colonies by what they do in their own backyards and by the food they purchase...preferably local and organically grown.
- TEEC supports the weekly Farmer's Market on Sundays at the Village Green, and is encouraging residents to sign up for a canning workshop that is being offered in August to support local food preservation. Both offer residents ways to reduce their travel out of town for groceries.
- Sept. 23 - TEEC's Harvest Festival Booth highlighted 3 cost and energy saving Weatherization Programs and 2 reduced cost Solar Programs. The Weatherization Programs are all available for residents on an ongoing basis. They are:1) Temple's Free Weatherization Program for residents, supported by a grant from the Congregational Church of Temple; 2) The PSNH Home Performance with Energy Star program, and 3) The Monadnock Energy Resources Initiative (MERI), a regional grass roots program bringing barn-raiser solar hot water installations to the region and offering free hands-on weatherization trainings: : a) 3 FREE Full-day Weatherization Trainings led by Andy Duncan, BPI Certified Energy Auditor:Oct 13 - at the River Center in Peterborough,Nov. 3 - at a home in Keene Nov. 10 - at Natures Classroom b) 2 FREE Home Energy Audit Field Experiences offered by Ted Stiles - 1 hr. each - for building store employees, building managers, home owners--date and time TBD. c) 1 FREE DRAWING for a professional energy audit worth $625 including blower door test, thermal scan, combustion safety tests, list of recommended improvements & projected savings cost estimates and TREAT software computer modeling-drawing on Nov 13. Solar Programs: 1. The Monadnock Energy Resources Initiative (MERI), completed its first all volunteer, barn-raiser style solar hot water installation at the Nielsen-Rinaldo home in Temple on Sept. 15! The group will continue to offer solar hot water installations next spring using the neighbors-helping-neighbors, barn-raiser model of all volunteer labor to cut the costs down for solar installations in our region.2. The Solarize Monadnock Program is a grass roots group bulk purchasing project for our residents available until Dec 30, lowering the costs for solar electric installations through bulk ordering of parts and the installations. FOR MORE INFORMATION OR TO SIGN UP for any of these programs contact Bev Edwards - [email protected]
- TEEC organized a Book Discussion Group or "study circle" to study several manuals from the Northwest Earth Institute. We began with Global Warming: Changing Course. After a stimulating experience discussing the articles in that manual, the group will begin discussing Choices for Sustainable Living, also from NWEI.
- TEEC continued its Free Weatherization Program, Recycling Programs for the town and the Elementary School, and kept a steady stream of information updated in Temple's bi-monthly Newsletters and website, reaching out to residents regarding regional and state-wide weatherization and renewable energy programs, incentives and rebates.
- TEEC's other branch, TCC, met monthly, continuing to work on the creation of a local Business, Farms,Skills and Services Guide for Hire and for Sharing, planned new workshops for the spring and summer, led several trainings in Builing Raised Beds for organic gardens, and reached out to the town's Recreation Committee to co-sponsor a Contra Dance that is scheduled for August 17.
- TEEC assisted TCC in starting a Contra Dancing Program for the town to help build community and encourage local activities to reduce commuting.
- We are also assisting TCC in compiling a "Temple Business, Services, Farms, and Skills-to-Share Guide" which will be both cash-based and also offer the option of Time Banking.
- We had a vibrant educational booth at Temple's Annual Harvest Festival on 9/22.
- We will continue our recycling program for the elementary school, for the Harvest Festival, and for all town events.
- We continue to offer Free Weatherization for Temple Residents, supported by the Congregational Church of Temple.
- TEEC is providing information to residents on presently available state, regional and local programs that offer financial or hands-on help for energy efficiency, renewable energy, and weatherization projects. Information is shared in each bi-monthly Temple Newsletter as well as on this website.
- In the interest of encouraging local shopping and sharing, TEEC & TCC completed their lengthy process of interviews with all the business owners, farmers, and service organizations in town to update Temple's Business, Farm and Services Guide.
- Following an energy audit of the lighting in the town's Fire Department, TEEC presented a proposal from the electric company (PSNH) to the Select Board on March 6, for a 50/50 payment offer for all new energy efficient lighting. This will cut the cost of the project in half.
- TEEC handled all the recycling for Temple's Annual Good Roads Day..
- Joining with the Recreation Committee, we worked with the science teacher for our elementary school on a project using scientific methods and concepts, testing different tires and weights as the 4th grade students worked in teams of 2 to build small solar powered vehicles. On a sunny day in June, the kids raced their vehicles in the school parking lot! The students also took photos of their process and race to share on their page, the "Kids Corner", of this website. They will be posted soon.
Summer - Fall 2014
- TEEC & TCC finalized the creation of the "Temple Business, Services and Farms Guide" and created a website for it where residents can access information and contact info for each local business and farm. This project was undertaken in the interest of reducing out-of-town travel, as well as supporting the local economy.
- TEEC has been actively meeting with solar installers, inviting solar site visits, and has held meetings with prospective property owners of sites which might serve as good locations for a group net metered solar array for our community.
Winter - Spring 2015
- For a second year in a row, TEEC and Temple's Recreation Committee have joined hands to coordinate a solar project for our elementary school 4th graders. Working with the school's science teacher, the kids will work in pairs to construct a small vehicle, install a solar panel, hook up the electronics, and finally race them. They will also have a classroom session discussing why it is important to stop powering our buildings and machines with fossil fuels and switch to using renewable sources like the power of sunlight!
- TEEC will continue offering weatherization information to residents; continue doing the recycling for our Elementary School; and continue doing the recycling for Town Meeting and Good Roads Day!
2015-Summer of 2016
Confronting the threat of construction for a massive fracked gas compressor station on our town's border and within the proximity of Temple's Elementary School became the committee's focus for over a year.
With methane being the worst GHG for propelling climate change through its heat-trapping capacity, most of our time and energy were devoted to the necessary task of fending off the Kinder Morgan fracked gas pipeline and its dangerous infrastructure--the 41,000 horse power compressor station, which they were planning to site a mere 1/2 mile from our elementary school!
- Serious health impacts have been documented within a radius of 3 miles from much smaller compressor stations (12 horse power)than the one proposed for New Ipswich on Temple's border.
- For that reason and many others, we needed to educate our residents and neighbors about the health threats for our communities and the steps they could take to everything in their power to stop the pipeline.
- Other significant threats it posed included destruction of our conservation land, aquifers and forests; contamination of our drinking water and soil from the blasting and drilling during construction as it released the embedded radon and arsenic within our granite; and the taking of private property through eminent domain.
- We did everything we could think of to prevent this from invading NH and our community. And ultimately we succeeded!
- We created Power Pt. presentations, held 5 large gatherings to educate our townsfolk and neighbors about the threats posed by the infrastructure, and discuss with the state's Dept. of Environmental Services what help they could provide regarding the threats to our local drinking water, soil and public health from the contamination caused by the construction process and the toxic emissions from the compressor station.
We also merged our forces with other residents to create the Temple Ad Hoc Pipeline Advisory Committee, which met weekly for over a year to plan events and advise townsfolk about public hearings, legislative meetings at our NH State House, petitions to sign, letters to write to our elected officials, speeches to give at FERC events, etc. And we participated actively in the NH Pipeline Awareness Network's meetings, actions and events. When Kinder Morgan withdrew its application for the Northeast Energy Direct pipeline, essentially, we WON!
Summer of 2016- Summer of 2017
From our victory to stop the pipeline to the present- serious efforts have been underway to install new NH Rules and Regulations for the state's SEC regarding the construction of "high pressure gas infrastructure" in the state.
Along with the efforts of the grassroots group, NH Pipeline Health Study Group, TEEC members helped to accomplish getting very strong Rules adopted by the NH Site Evaluation Committee and approved by the Joint Legislative Committee on Administrative Rules that will limit the construction or restrict fracked gas pipelines in NH.
2017 - Additional Activities
TEEC continued its commitment to conduct all the sorting of the recyclables from Temple's Good Roads Day as well as from the town's Harvest Festival plus the delivery of them to the Wilton Recycling Center.
The committee created a very active booth for Temple's Annual Harvest Festival in September, highlighting:
1. A petition for residents to sign that will create a warrant article for the town's 2018 Town Meeting, asking our town to move toward utilizing 100% renewable power for the electrical needs for all municipal buildings by 2030. We had more signatures than are required to establish the warrant article.
2. The opportuntiy to order copies of the book created by our Elementary School 4th graders, "Let's Make the World a Better Place" (See selections in the "Kids Corner" page of this website) -- filled with poems and drawings by the students focused on improving and protecting our environment.
3. Free copies of Temple's "Shop Locally" directory for local businesses, services and farms --a product of the Energy Committee.
The booth also offered free hand-outs of materials on climate change in the Northeast and climate change in NH, donated by the Union of Concerned Scientists and the NH Sierra Club, and many other informational materials on energy conservation and renewables.
SPRING 2018 -
1. Town Meeting VICTORY! On March 17, Our citizens voted to approve the TEEC- sponsored Warrant Article, asking our town to switch our municipal energy usage to 100% renewable power generation by 2030.
It was initiated by the petition the Energy Committee created and had for citizens to sign at our Harvest Festival booth. We gained enough signatures for it to become a warrant article to be voted on and approved at our Annual Town Meeting.
2. A Task Force of volunteers is being established to lead the evaluation of options for manifesting this commitment.
3. We conducted all the sorting and recycling for all of the recyclables brought in from the town's roads on Good Roads Day.
FALL 2018 -
1.Since the Energy Committee had initiated the petition and created the warrant article to create a Task Force to recommend options for switching Temple's municipal energy usage to 100% renewable power by 2030, it was an initiative of and outgrowth of TEEC. So the Energy Committee decided to merge with the Task Force to manifest this project.
2. Monthly meetings have been held and we have been assessing the level of energy demand in each of our municipal buildings and creating a staged plan of action.
3. We are applying for a grant to fund the construction of an EV (electric vehicle) charging station in Temple.
4. We are discussing grants and loans offered by the NH Community Development Finance Authority to fund the needed energy audit for Town Hall and the Annex as well as the installation of a solar array on the FD roof.
WINTER/SPRING 2019 -
The Task Force has decided on a 3 stage implementation of our project.
a. First,we are gathering all of the energy usage data for our town's electricity and heat through 2018. And on Feb. 13, we met with Scott Maslansky, from the NH CDFA, to discuss financial options for manifesting our goals. At our next meeting we met with Henry Herndon, director of Local Solutions, for the new NHSEA to sign up as a municipal member with all the technical and project support they offer towns with our goals.
b. We will continue to examine the various pros and cons for a roof top solar array for our Municipal Blg. and FD. Meanwhile, we will continue to solicit funding for the EV charging station we want to construct in Temple.
c. We will pursue a site and financial support for installing a large ground mount solar array for all the municipal energy demands and residential demands via net metering.
1. We had an energy audit for the Town Hall and Annex conducted by Margaret Dillon on July 16.
2. We welcomed two guests who came to discuss Monadnock regional coordination for towns manifesting our 100% renewable energy goals and our efforts to install EV charging stations.
3. Plans for creating an informative booth for Harvest Festival will be foreground at our August meeting.
4. We sent Temple's energy data to Revision Energy for review and invited Dan Weeks from Revision to conduct a site visit at the Municipal Bldg/FD.
FALL 2019 -
1. We had a booth at the Harvest Festival which offered materials from the Union of Concerned Scientists on Climate Change in the Northeast and in NH and on the intensification of NH's Heat Index plus lots of handouts on actions people can take to reduce their level of CO2 and methane emissions as well as our potential construction of a EV charging station. We also ran a Power Pt presentation about the Task Force. And we offered free copies of Temple's "Shop Locally" Guide to Local Businesses, Farms and Services. Of course, the public also had an opportunity to talk to our members throughout the day.
2. We also set up all the recycling containers at different locations throughout the festival grounds and collected the recyclables at the end of the Harvest Festival to take to the Wilton Recycling Center.
3. We invited two additional solar installers to review our energy data for the municipal bldg/FD and to come to conduct site visits for the buildings.
1. We began to research the newly passed state legislation, RSA 53-E and Senate Bill 286, signed by the governor in August and operational in October, 2019, which authorizes municipalities to establish Community Power Plans (CPPs) to take control of the electricity costs through bulk purchasing and the sources of their electric power for their entire communities. That includes the accounts for businesses, residents and municipal usage. Of course, the Plans must have an "opt-out" option for any resident or business not wanting to participate.
2. We invited Henry Herndon, the Director of Local Solutions for Clean Energy NH, to remotely attend one of our Zoom meetings. He is leading the efforts to make the Community Power legislation workable for as many NH towns as possible. He showed us a video which clarified all of the required steps involved in establishing a CPP and answered our questions for over an hour.
3. Our Select Board appointed our Task Force to be a Temple Community Power Evaluation Committee to continue studying the various benefits and operational technicalities of potential CPP options.
4. Three members of the Task Force attended a lengthy Community Power Summit to gain more understanding of the process and to learn about an initiative underway to create a technical assistance body to help towns with the implementation of their CPPs.
5. Along with discussions about CPP options, the Task Force continues to work on the parallel track of researching all of the particulars involved in recommending a large ground mounted solar array for the electricity needs of the Municipal Bld. and FD, which could eventually expand to provide all the power for a CPP.
Due to the Covid-19 Pandemic the Task Force continues to meet monthly via Zoom connections.
1. We have prepared a slide show about the Task Force mission, activities and the urgency for accomplishing its goals ASAP, while acknowledging the economic and logistic challenges we face in moving forward as fast as we would like.
2. We have narrowed down a preferred site for a ground mounted solar array for municipal energy.
3. We continue to monitor the development of the Community Power organizing committee which will provide the detailed mechanisms necessary to establish a Community Power Plan for Temple's community. And we participate in CENH webinars relevant for establishing a Community Power Plan and/or a net-metered solar array to provide electric power for all residents and municipal buildings.
1. The Task Force continues to meet monthly via Zoom. We have also held several unofficial meetings in the field to further examine the benefits of several potential solar sites in greater detail.
2. We have held conversations and an on site meeting with Tim Fiske, Chairman of the Temple Land Use Committee, to evaluate his recommendation for us to consider an installation of solar PV on the town-owned 15 acres north of the ball field near Temple Elementary School.
3. At our January meeting, we voted to discuss with the Select Board the possibility of reserving that site for a possible solar PV array when financing becomes available. We have decided that it is the most ideal site in Temple for such an array for a variety of reasons.
4. At our rescheduled Feb meeting on March 1, Chairman Rob Wills reported on his conversation with the BOS Chairman, Ken Caisse, indicating no concerns at the present time regarding the possibility of reserving a portion of the town-owned land near the TES playground for a future PV array when financial opportunities become available.
5. Rob also reported that his consultation with Eversource regarding the potential PV in that area proved useful. The closeness of that land to Rte. 45's 3-phase line would be especially optimal.
6. The Task Force decided to put our land reservation request in writing, a one-pager that we would present to the BOS and Temple's Land Use Committee, including the size of our requested site - 100 ft by 30 ft out of the 15 acres available.