Conversations about energy conservation

Mayor Sweeney and volunteers get ready to get the word out about energy conservation.

Mayor Sweeney and volunteers get ready to get the word out about energy conservation.

Volunteers, city officials and the Keep Hayward Clean and Green Task Force hit the streets last week to do some door-to-door tutoring on ways residents can save money and help the environment by using some energy-saving tips. It was organized by Engage 360, a  group with a goal of spreading the word about energy conservation in various communities throughout the state, including Hayward, a city that prides itself on promoting sustainable practices. Here’s a flier for a contest the city is holding that could win homeowners free energy efficiency improvements.

Here’s the press release on the event, as well as some tips, from Engage 360:

Hayward Residents Learn Energy and Money Saving Tips

Local volunteers from Engage 360 provided golden ideas to save energy, and money, to Hayward residents last week.

Engage 360, a grassroots smart-energy movement by and for Californians,  brought together 20 volunteers to tell residents how performing simple steps, like turning up the temperature of their refrigerator and freezer or doing their laundry with cold water, could save them energy AND money. Members of Soulciety, a bay area nonprofit that inspires and educates youth, as well as the mayor of Hayward, Mr. Mike Sweeney, and other City of Hayward employees attended the event to show their support for an energy-smart California.

Volunteers met up with Mayor Sweeney, donned shirts that read, “Ask me about saving energy” and hit the streets on a door-to-door neighborhood walk through to help spread the energy saving word. Although there were less than 20 volunteers actually knocking on doors, they reached 284 homes and gave away a special Engage 360 biodegradable tote bag with energy efficient cold-water laundry detergent and other informational brochures inside to every home they visited. Over 40 Hayward residents even committed to helping spread Engage 360’s tips themselves after hearing the cost-effective and energy efficient benefits.

The Hayward Green and Clean taskforce, an organization responsible for keeping the city free of graffiti and other eyesores, also joined the canvassing to promote energy efficiency education. The taskforce’s partnership with Engage 360 signifies an important milestone for the City of Hayward to step up and save energy for California as a whole.

Engage 360 will be in other Bay Area communities and throughout California soon, sharing energy saving ideas to help the state become efficient and smart-energy focused. In the meantime, you can learn more about energy savings at www.engage360.com or www.facebook.com/engage360!

Here are Engage 360’s Smart-Energy Tips for Summer:

ARE YOU AUTOMATICALLY COOL? Use a programmable thermostat to keep your house at an optimal temperature, while automatically scaling back 10°-15°F when no one’s home – saving you up to $160 per year on your home heating and cooling bills.

SAVING WITH CEILING FANS Stay cool and save more by using ceiling fans. In combination with lowering your thermostat, you can save $200 during the six hottest months of the year. Also don’t forget to turn off those fans when leaving rooms for even more savings.

USE YOUR WASHING MACHINE’S ENERGY TO WASH CLOTHES About 90 percent of your washing machine’s energy use is spent on heating water. So when possible, set your machine to a cold wash and see your savings add up (up to $42 each year depending on the type of water heater you have).

FIND OUT HOW AIR ESCAPES YOUR HOME Leaks from pipes, gaps around chimneys and even recessed lights in insulated ceiling are the largest causes for air leaks in your home.  Save up to $236 a year on home cooling and heating costs by using weatherstripping and caulking to seal leaks!

IS YOUR FRIDGE AS COOL AS YOU ARE? Having a fridge that is even 10oF too cold can use up to 15 percent more energy. Set your refrigerator temperature to 39oF and your freezer to 5oF, and keep food fresh and delicious while saving $12 a year.

CUT DOWN ON VAMPIRE ENERGY COSTS BY USING A SMARTSTRIP Appliances that are plugged in, but in “standby” mode are still drawing energy, leading to higher utility bills.  In fact, more than 70 percent of home audio system and 50 percent of game console energy consumption occurs while these devices are turned off and in standby mode.  Purchase and use SmartStrips to turn off electronics, such as TVs, game consoles, computers, when you don’t need them.

Eric Kurhi

  • qodrn

    Driving by mt. Eden today and noticed a car trying to enter the school grounds. The car had “goose control” written all over it and also “working dogs Beware”. Didn’t notice the goose being bothered, but do you think the school district has hired this goose control person?
    Maybe they were looking for a job. The things you can see early in the morning in Hayward….

  • qodrn

    I am tired, I meant to say Mt. Eden High School…

  • The Silent Observer

    Yes Qodrn,

    Loose’s Goose Control has been working at schools in the district for quite a few years. You can’t imagine how “prolific” a gaggle of Canadian geese can be! My son read that an adult goose can produce a pound of droppings daily. If the geese weren’t scared away, the athletic fields would be unusable. I’ve been dealing with “soiled” athletic shoes for 8 years now.

  • Anybody see the article in the Review regarding percentages of students that entered 9th grade in 2006 and actually graduated in 2011? Hayward ranks next to last in Alameda County, only Oakland is below HUSD. I wonder how Ms. Duran and the Board will explain that?

  • Sherry Blair

    Isn’t it usually explained by questioning the data or the kind of kids that live in the district?(You know, race, income level, educational level of parents, language etc.) I don’t think I ever heard a district take real responsibility.

    I wonder how many parents and students know about the advantage of taking the high school proficiency exam to receive their high school diploma. That is traditionally kept a secret from families because districts are afraid of losing the ADA.

    I’ll bet a good number of our students could pass it and move on to jobs and college without the stigma of being a high school drop out…if they were informed.

    I’ll bet most people reading this don’t even know what it is.

  • qodrn

    The Hayward School District is not doing its job. Sometimes I think the parents or household owners who are paying a bundle to this district (what 20 million a month) need to turn it into a charter school district. I am not sure in present form if the school district is salvageable.

  • Sherry Blair

    Did any of you read Ellen Corbett’s article ”
    Tough times call for responsible choices?”

    Ever since Brown started talking about cutting redevelopment agencies, all that I have heard from officials in Hayward is “aint it awful.”

    I was pretty much blown off when I asked the question that Ellen Corbett raises about the relative importance of redevelopment vs. schools (and social services) when it comes to dividing up limited State funds.

    I hope to that we hear the other side of why the city is not working with our elected State Senator. It sure doesn’t sound good to me.

  • John Kyle



  • qodrn

    So, how many years has the loose goose patrol been working on reducint the goose population? What does this cost the school? If they have been working on it for about 8 years, maybe its time to let this contract out to someone else, because there are plenty of fat happy geese sitting on the outfield.

  • Don’t think I indicated it was a surprise that we rank next to the bottom in student success. I am not surprised at all, but I dare say that the BOE will be…if they believed all of the dog and pony show that Duran has been giving them. I am disgusted with the high salaried administrators who will NEVER take responsibility for failing our children…it will always be the parents, the teachers or the students that just didn’t get it done.

  • John Kyle


    Do not forget those who castigate others, wyho fail to accept or recognize the efforts of others who suggest or propose ideas not yet introduced by or accepted by folks such as your self.

    Geex, you had great opportunity for in put if by no other means than ‘pillow talk’ when hubhby was on board of trustees!

    Remember… Husd’prob;ems are not newq , they began well before the arivalof Marlin Foxworth! Recall his repeated remark? “How do youy educate kids when the transiency rate is so high that you have their (presummed) attention for just two or three years?”

  • I have no idea whar you are trying to say and furthermore I don’t care.

  • The Silent Observer

    Congrats to Burbank, Golden Oak Montessori(charter) and Faith Ringgold schools for excellent star test scores!

  • John Kyle


    As suspected,,, clueless!

  • qodrn

    Don’t forget to visit the last Hayward Zucchini festival this weekend. You will want to tell everyone you were there. Next year, the festival moves to Union City.