AERO radio spot

      This is the text of the public service announcement I recorded for the Alternative Energy Resources Organization, which aired in early March on Missoula’s public radio station, KUFM.  You can listen to it at, but I don’t think it will be posted there for a few weeks.

          Back in the 1970s, after the OPEC oil embargo there was a flurry of interest in energy efficiency.  I remember public service spots on the radio and on TV reminding us to turn off lights we didn’t need to have on, to turn down the thermostat, to carpool, and, of course, there was the one in which Jimmy Carter famously put on a cardigan.  I was living in Boulder, Colorado at the time, and I remember seeing a lot of energy efficient homes Continue reading

Well, I’m sunk.

          Well, I’m really sunk now. See you all in bankruptcy court. As it turns out, Fannie Mae won’t make mortgages on underground homes. Not even earth berm homes. Who knew? Of course I should have guessed, since an energy-efficient home saves the owner money, affording the borrower more money to pay the lender, so who would want to condone that? And who wants to reward the American public for building energy-efficient buildings by guaranteeing their loans through a federally-backed mortgage guarantee program? Not Uncle Sam. And what sort of bank or credit union thinks about the risks they take when making loans – beyond the risks described by Fannie Mae? None.

          Just  never let them  hear the words “earth berm” or Continue reading