LOWVILLE When the Homesteading Fair takes place Sept. 8 and 9 at the Maple Ridge Center, two area residents will share their knowledge and experiences about renewable energy sources. One will explain how he went green, creating a highly energy-efficient, solar-powered home free of volatile organic compounds, while the other will present information on efficient wood burning and scrounging material to build a home very cheaply, or nearly for free.
Mickey Dietrich, owner of Green Volt Solutions, will give two presentations on Saturday. The first session will focus on getting a home ready for renewable energy.
His second session will focus specifically on solar power. Much of his expertise in this area comes from building his own home.
I designed most of the home myself, especially with the passive solar. Everything has been working great. For our new home project, we used green building products that most were not using, and in some cases, we believe we might have been the first in New York state, he explained.
Mr. Dietrich had some prior interest in renewable energy and green products when, in 2004, his fiancée was diagnosed with thyroid cancer.
This made us more aware of our environmental surroundings, and when our first child was born in 2006, it heightened our awareness even further, he said.
That awareness has become part of his business, which along with energy-efficient products, offers polypropylene piping, LED lighting, no VOC stains, caulks and sealants, DC water pumps and Indow Windows.
I found that some of these products were not easy to find, so I became a dealer for a lot of the products I used. We used polypropylene piping. It is one of the greenest piping materials you can get with no toxic solvent or glues, no leaching, no leaks and the piping material is recyclable. Our home is outfitted with LED lighting, since we didnt want CFLs due to them containing mercury.
James S. Juczak, Adams Center, also will conduct two workshop Saturday. One presentation will focus on efficient wood burning, while the other will be about scrounging.
Scrounging is how to find lifes needs, necessities and fun for free or near free, Mr. Juczak said.
His efficient wood-burning segment will explain how the use of rocket or masonry stoves are much more efficient that traditional wood stoves or outdoor stoves.
Mr. Juczak is a former shop teacher in the South Jefferson School District. He owns Woodhenge Sustainability Co., which teaches energy classes in solar, wind and microhydro, as well as sustainable agriculture, building methods and biofuels.
For more information about the renewable resources presentations or other planned workshops at the Homesteading Fair, contact Cornell Cooperative Extension at 376-5270.