ReVision Energy's Commitment to Sustainability
At ReVision, we strive to "practice what we preach" - reducing our own carbon footprint in addition to helping our clients and business partners reduce theirs.
Here are a few of the efforts we've taken to reduce our business' negative impact on the environment:
Our office facilities are as close to net-zero as is possible. Both our Liberty and Portland, Maine offices are heated with gasifying wood boilers, with wood from sustainable sources (in fact, a lot of it is waste packaging material!). We use solar hot water systems for the limited amount of hot water we do need. Both facilities have photovoltaic systems to offset electrical use - the remaining power is bought from renewable energy sources. And of course, conservation is key with strict energy monitoring using a TED device, motion-timed lights, power strips on electronics, etc.
Our new Exeter, New Hampshire branch office aims to be the first carbon-neutral solar energy showroom in the state. By end of 2012 the facility will have an automated pellet boiler, solar hot water system, and grid-tied photovoltaic array, demonstrating that solar energy systems work (even for retrofit projects) and allowing people to see these systems up close.
Recycling is mandatory company-wide and we have taken active measures to reduce paper waste - online payroll, digital communications, etc. What paper we do use is 100% recycled.
Commitment to Local Business and Community
We recognize that our purchasing patterns have a direct impact on local economies and fossil fuel use - buying local means a smaller carbon footprint of a product throughout its lifecycle. We balance this with a need for excellence in manufacturing and service, as the reality is that there are limited domestic manufacturing facilities for renewable energy components.
Whenever possible, we buy local, which encompasses everything from marketing and printing services to lunch for our team. We refer work to local, like-minded architects and builders and participate in educational activities whenever possible.
We contribute to the local community in the form of service and cash donations to a variety nonprofits, including Habitat for Humanity, the Audubon Society, the Maine Coast Heritage Trust, York County Shelter Programs, Sail Maine, the Center for Wildlife, Camp Kieve, Boys and Girls Club of South Portland, and numerous schools and churches - see our partners in green section and nonprofit and schools projects page.
2011 marked the beginning of our Check in for Charity campaign, which pledges up to $500 each month to a local nonprofit organization.
Most of the ReVision employees are intimately involved with community work and advocacy - giving their time generously, especially where their expertise in renewables is useful. ReVision encourages employee volunteering and has a formalized program for such activity.
We sincerely believe in and honor the responsibility of businesses to be stewards of their local economies and to contribute meaningfully to the local community.
It is the nature of our business to need to travel a lot - the systems we install are throughout Maine and New Hampshire, and as we New Englanders know, there are a lot of long drives!
However, we do our very best to minimize the amount of travel that is required to do our jobs and to maintain an efficient fleet. Our employees frequently work 10 hour days to ensure that jobs are completed expeditiously, which also ensures that a minimum number of trips to a location are required.
We also use a fleet of vehicles smaller than is typical in the contracting industry - e.g. light duty trucks and vans wherever possible instead of heavy duty vehicles. Light trucks operate at 10-30% better efficiency than heavier trucks and for most jobs they are sufficient. This results in a savings of hundreds of gallons of gasoline and diesel fuel each year.
ReVision is currently moving very aggressively towards a switch to biofuels, with a goal to have the entire fleet running on 100% biofuel by 2011. Many employees commute via greasecar, carpool, or bike.
Also, where appropriate, we offer telecommuting options to further reduce employee travel.
Our Employees Walk the Walk
ReVision Energy offers a generous program for employees who wish to install a renewable energy system on their own home.
Just about all of us have our own renewable energy system - in fact, we get downright competitive about who has the lowest carbon footprint!
Here are a few examples:
- Liberty Office Manager Jen Albee and husband, Liberty Solar Installer Hans Albee, recently installed solar hot water. They say there's nothing like a solar powered shower.
- ReVision co-founder Phil Coupe added a solar hot water system so that he could switch his oil boiler into cold-start mode all summer long. He uses a big wood stove so that he can dramatically reduce his oil usage throughout the wintertime.
- Fred, Website and IT Guy, lives in a 500 sq. foot yurt-inspired SIP house. His off-grid home uses a less than 2kw/hr of power a day - from the sun, of course - and only 1/2 cord of wood a year for heating.
- The Wakefield, NH home of NH Branch Manager Dan Clapp sports a grid-tied photovoltaic system offsetting the electric consumption of a geothermal heating system.
- Electrician and solar installer Tim Jilek has solar hot water, a pellet boiler, and PV system which he expects to offset nearly 100% of his usage. His conventionally-built home is nearly net-zero!
- Portland shop project manager Dan Leonard uses a natural gas boiler and solar hot water.
- ReVision co-founder and engineer Fortunat Mueller recently added more photovoltaic panels to his existing solar electric system - he also has solar hot water. In fact, in 2009 he went the whole summer with solar only and no backup!
Reduce carbon emissions and save money with a grid-tied photovoltaic or solar hot water system. Contact us today!