Archives for 2013

Ridgewood’s Wastewater Treatment Facility Goes Green and Saves Green

Ridgewood, NJ – “It’s a win-win situation,” the Ridgewood Mayor Paul Aronsohn said. “It really gives new meaning to a green initiative.”

Eco Ed was the main Sustainability Consultant for this win-win situation

Eco Ed was the main Sustainability Consultant for this win-win situation

Ridgewood’s wastewater treatment plant, the largest public consumer of electricity in the Village, officially welcomed a new look this week.

The facility now captures waste methane, and uses it on site, through a new Combined Heat & Power Generator, to offset most of that electricity. The new solar field also adds to the renewable energy produced on site, which is located on Village-owned property on Prospect Street in Glen Rock.

Public-Private Partnership

“This is the first setup where a municipality in New Jersey obtained their renewable energy through a public-private partnership,” said Donald Rodgers, NSU’s chief development officer.

Private companies Natural Systems Utilities, Middlesex Water Company and American Refining and Biochemical funded the capital cost of the project. Through a Power Purchase Agreement, the village in turn purchases the electricity at a below-market price, according to officials.

These savings will accrue well into 7 figures over the 20-year life of the contract.

“The challenge we faced,” said Eco Ed Schwartz, Sustainability Consultant, “was to coordinate this sustainability project with no budget. We were able to package this in a way that benefitted both the investors and the Village.”

The public-private partnership was praised by Village officials and representatives of the companies involved, who said the financing arrangement had no precedents in New Jersey, and few if any in the country.

A public-private partnership creates a sustainable future

A public-private partnership creates a sustainable future

Chris Rutishauser, the Village of Ridgewood Engineer adds that, “Instead of waste going into the air and increasing our carbon footprint, we’re getting another use out of it.”

Mayor Paul Aronsohn, speaking to a small crowd on hand for the event Friday, noted that by going green, the Village was saving green – cutting costs while reducing its environmental impact.

“It’s a win-win situation,” he said. “It really gives new meaning to a green initiative.”

The overall Sustainability Project also included installing solar panels at Ridgewood’s Village Hall, the EMS building, fire department headquarters and other Village-owned locations.

Saving Money and Keeping Your Home Warm this Winter

Find your feet cold, feeling drafts around your home, or think your heating bill is too high? You are not alone. The “Ridgewood Patch” recently published a popular yearly post by Eco Ed about solving these house-warming problems.

Prepare your home for the winter. Take simple steps to save money and be more comfortable.

Prepare your home for the winter. Take simple steps to save money and be more comfortable.


Read the full article “Saving Energy and Making Your Home More Comfortable for the Winter

This article will provide you with the…

  1. First steps to reduce your heating bill
  2. Financial benefits of having a home energy audit
  3. Typical problem areas of a house
  4. Typical areas that lack insulation in a house
  5. Low-cost, easy solutions

Get your home ready for the winter. Read the full article “Saving Energy and Making Your Home More Comfortable for the Winter

Ask Eco Ed: How can we adopt sustainable practices to kick off the school year?

Eco Ed responds to a mother’s question on how to become more sustainable to kick-off the school year. Learn how to keep your young students healthy, travel efficiently, what products to buy, and other back-to-school tips.

[Read more…]

Ask Eco Ed: Is there a way to make a pool eco-friendly?

Dear Eco-Ed:

These past few weeks have been so hot, we are discussing installing an in-ground pool in our yard. I know that a pool can be quite an energy hog. Is there a way to make a pool eco-friendly? We stopped going to the municipal pool years ago, as there were always goose droppings in and around the area.
– Hot as Heck in Ridgewood

[Read more…]

Eco Ed on Eco Vacations [podcast]

Green Divas Radio features Eco Ed as "The Green Dude." Click the image to learn more about living plastic free.

Green Divas Radio features Eco Ed as “The Green Dude.” Click the image to learn more about living plastic fre

The warm weather has arrived. Time to use those saved up vacation days to travel.

Traveling is an easy way to increase your carbon footprint (bad news). But there are guilt free ways to make your vacation an eco vacation.

  • Stay local – save money on flights and spend the money locally. Indulge in activities you wouldn´t normally do. Go kayaking, rent a romantic cabin nearby, or take the kids fishing.
  • Take public transportation – It is easy to hop on the train to visit a major city. This reduces the amount of CO2 released and lets you gaze at the American landscape that is often ignored.
  • Volunteer – take the family out to a local organization and help them out. You may find yourself picking blueberries, beautifying parts of your town, or if you want to cool down cleaning up your local river.

Hear what Eco Ed has to say about Eco Vacations.

E-Waste: Where does your Ipad, Ipod, Kindle, or Laptop go?

Green Divas Radio features Eco Ed as "The Green Dude." Click the image to learn more about living plastic free.

Green Divas Radio features Eco Ed as “The Green Dude.” Click the image to learn more about living plastic free.

We are more connected than ever. You are sitting at a computer with an iPhone in your pocket, the Kindle is in your bag, along with an iPod to use when you go running. That is a lot of electronics.

Where do electronics go when you throw them out? Electronic waste, known as “E-waste”, refers to the disposal of electronics. It has become a global problem. Electronics require hazardous materials and rare metals.

Put in your iPhone headphones and find out what happens when you throw out your electronics.

Reducing Your Carbon Footprint with the Green Divas [podcast]

Green Divas Radio features Eco Ed as "The Green Dude." Click the image to learn more.

Green Divas Radio features Eco Ed as “The Green Dude.” Click the image to learn more.

Eco Ed joins the Green Divas to talk about climate change and offer us some ways to reduce our carbon footprint.

  • First understand what your carbon footprint is
  • Then understand what your highest carbon output is from
  • Here in NJ the top two culprits are transportation and home energy use

This issue of climate change is a hot topic. Stay up-to-date by listening to the short, energetic podcast.

Green Divas co-host Eco Ed to talk about the poisons of plastics [podcast]

Green Divas Radio features Eco Ed as "The Green Dude"

Green Divas Radio features Eco Ed as “The Green Dude”

Did you realize that plastic contains poisonous toxins? Plastic is found everywhere in our daily lives: wrapping and packing our food, in shower curtain liners, lubricants, and yes, even sex toys (now we have your attention). This has resulted in 96 percent of women and babies testing positive for BPA (bad toxin) in their system.

Become aware about the issue so you can take preventative measures.

Eco Ed Schwartz Fun father’s Day ideas: Podcast

Green Divas Radio features Eco Ed as "The Green Dude"

Green Divas Radio features Eco Ed as “The Green Dude”

Short on ideas for father´s day? Skip the materialistic gift and give your father a memorable experience.

Find out what your father likes. If he enjoys the outdoors go on a hike. Does he like water? Yes? Then go jump in the river, do water sports, or go scuba diving.

Eco Ed shares ideas on how to bond with your father this Father´s day – without the materialistic stuff.

Show your dad that you really care by continuing these ideas through out the year.

Maplewood’s Deputy Mayor uses Eco Ed for Home Energy Audit

The Major of Maplewood has asked Eco Ed to come into her home to conduct an energy audit. He was able to save her 25% on heating and energy, while making the home more comfortable.

The Major of Maplewood has asked Eco Ed to come into her home to conduct an energy audit. He was able to save her 25% on heating and energy, while making the home more comfortable.

Maplewood’s Deputy Mayor Kathy Leventhal has brought ‘Eco Ed’ into her home to conduct an energy audit. As a result of the energy audit she will reduce her home’s energy costs by 25%.

The mayor claimed she made a wise investment: “With rebates, we expect pay-back to take ten years, which may seem like a long time, but we’ll be much more comfortable during those ten years.”

Read the full article

If you are interested in having a professor home energy audit conducted, please feel free to reach out to ‘Eco Ed‘. Use the local professional you can trust.