Getting to Net Zero – Home Heating

Second only to transportation, heating homes in Central Vermont is our largest contribution of greenhouse gasses to the global climate.

And, you can do something about it.

In fact, there are at least six different strategies that many people in our area have followed and one or a combination may work for you:


By increasing insulation and decreasing leaks, you can reduce fuel use up to 50%.

To learn more –

Advanced wood heat

If your boiler is kaput, or you are otherwise fed up with using oil for your central heat, there are wood pellet boiler experts in our area that have installed hundreds of these locally and renewably fueled systems.

To learn more – or

Modern wood stoves

New wood stoves are more efficient and less smoky than older models. You can see examples and ask for installation services at our local wood stove dealers.

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Burning wood without the dust, without stacking and often times with automatic start and thermostatically controlled is the current technology for wood pellet stoves.

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Modern wood pellet stoves

New heat pump technology uses clean electricity (including solar generation) to provide building heat with far greater efficiency than old-style electric space heaters. Heat pumps can also be used to heat your hot water – more efficient than traditional, electric resistance hot water heaters, and no burning of fossil fuels if you currently have an oil or propane hot water heater.

To learn more –

And for heat pump hot water heaters:

Heat pumps

Central Vermont is the home to the region’s largest producer of ASTM certified biodiesel made from used waste cooking oil. You can transition your oil boiler to use this renewable product relatively easy. This could be a transition for you as you look to other low-carbon fuels while your boiler is still functioning well.

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We do not promise that each of these will save you money. Some will, and some won’t. For most of the strategies above, there are incentives that will reduce the costs. And, the upfront costs for each can be spread over several years by getting a loan from a bank or credit union that provides financing for energy-related home improvements. If the price of oil and propane goes up, you will have protected your household or business from those cost increases. And if the prices don’t go up, you will have done the right thing and helped slow down the still increasing rate of greenhouse gas emissions and the resulting impacts of climate change. The October 8 report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change put an exclamation point on the need to act soon and act significantly.

Reducing greenhouse gas emissions is not someone else’s job, it is yours. Please consider changing the way you heat your home or business.

If you need help with moving forward on these recommendations, contact us at the Montpelier Energy Advisory Committee. We are volunteers that are glad to provide support for your efforts in reducing fossil fuel-based heating.