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Open house at green homes Saturday

MONTAGUE — This Saturday is the day to check out green technology and home features such as solar power and hot water systems, efficient air and ground source heat pumps for heating and cooling, radiant floor heating, insulation options, and green building materials such as sustainable wood products.

The Northeast Sustainable Energy Association is sponsoring its annual Green Buildings Open House self-guided tour.

Last year, about 10,000 people visited green buildings across the region. This year is the tour’s 14th year, with about 10 listings within 10 miles of Montague. Homes feature super-insulated deep energy retrofits, which are homes that are sealed tight and ventilated right, as recommended by building science professionals. Some homes have solar hot water systems, salvaged building materials and triple pane windows, “green” paints, rain barrels to collect water for gardens and solar electric systems to power their homes.

In Montague, two homes have signed up for the tour. Susan Durkee’s house, at 7 Newton Lane, off School Street, in Montague Center, will be open between noon and 4 p.m. Her home had electric solar panels installed on the roof last fall through the Solarize Montague program. The panels cover most of her household’s electricity usage and powers a plug-in electric vehicle, a Nissan Leaf. She also has solar hot water and a garage converted into a super-insulated addition.

Another home is an 1850s house that has been heavily insulated and had many air leaks sealed. Solar panels have been installed for electricity and hot water.

For more details about these and other green buildings on the tour, check out the NESEA website www.nesea.org/gboh. Click on the middle, blue icon: “Looking to Go Green? Find a Host Site Near You.”

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