Seacoast United Power to Help - Issue #3 - July 2015 Too Hot, Too Cold Healthy Living through Youth Sports
Seacoast United Power to Help - Issue #3 - July 2015 Too Hot, Too Cold Keep Cool without Breaking the Bank
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July 2015

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Featured Business & Non Profit Harmony, Community

Seacoast United: Healthy Living and Youth Sports

Seacoast United has remained true to its mission—to advance the physical and social well-being of children and young adults through youth sports. Through their foundation, Seacoast United also make sure that any athlete, regardless of financial situation is able to participate.

Physical activity is important in the healthy development of children. Most of us know this, but children are less active now than ever before. The National Association for Sport and Physical Education notes that only one in three children are physically active every day.

Increased physical activity delivers physiological, psychological and social benefits. This is especially important during the developmental years, and it carries forward into adulthood. This latter factor is borne out by organizations like the American Heart Association, which indicates that increased physical activity leads to increased life expectancy and decreased risk of cardiovascular disease, along with other health benefits.

Seacoast United, founded in 1992 by Paul Willis, began with a simple mission—to advance the physical and social well-being of youth and young adults through sports like soccer. For the past 22 years, this organization has been true to that mission, one that has been getting young people up and off the couch and onto athletic fields in New Hampshire (and now, Maine). They’ve recently expanded into other sports, also.

According to James Peterson, director of sales and marketing for Seacoast United, Willer’s vision was for Seacoast to be both an exclusive soccer training program, but also an inclusive one. What this means is that while there are a myriad of opportunities for highly-skilled players to play at the upper echelons of competition, Seacoast will never turn anyone away from their programs due to economics or if they aren’t an elite skill-level player, which is unique for a program like this one.

“Seacoast started with just two youth teams, and now, we have more than 5,000 athletes enrolled in our various programs,” said Peterson. “We’ve also branched out from soccer and are now offering team sports like baseball, softball, field hockey, and lacrosse.”

Peterson mentioned that while the focus is always on getting kids introduced to soccer (and other sports), the sports programming has continued growing and evolving.

“We now have select, elite, and professional level teams,” Peterson said. “Our summer college league (minor league) team is a nationally-recognized program. Last year, they won their league, which is part of the Premier Development League (PDL),” he said.

Peterson mentioned that Seacoast affiliates itself with outstanding coaches.

“50 percent of our staff has international experience,” Peterson added.

Peterson himself came to Seacoast after a stint with Oxford United, a premiere club program in Great Britain.

He talked about the important life lessons that sports offers those who choose to participate, like the “three P’s.”

“Sports is a great tool for young people to learn about teamwork, discipline, dealing with adversity—all things that are important for success in life.”

According to Peterson, Seacoast also has a significant number of players progressing up through their ranks.

“We had a case study done that indicated that 60 percent of our junior academy players went to our premiere and select division teams,” said Peterson.

Seacoast isn’t just a New Hampshire-based program any longer. While they have a state-of-the-art 70,000-square-foot indoor facility in Hampton and a four-field outdoor complex in Epping, they’ve expanded their soccer and baseball programming into southern Maine, as well as now having Seacoast affiliates in Portland, Topsham, and Bangor.

The Seacoast Foundation holds fundraising and charity events to support the overall goals and programming of Seacoast United. Much of the funding generated each year provides scholarships for athletes who may not be able to afford to participate with town club teams, or go on to elite level competitions. This includes traveling to national and international tournaments.

Peterson mentioned that they hold two major fundraisers each year.

“We have our annual soccer-a-thon, which takes place over a 24-hour period in April. We start games at 4:00 pm on Friday and these go continuously through Saturday at 4:00,” said Peterson. “These take place at our indoor facility in Hampton and the fields in Epping. We raised $70,000 in 2014,” he said.


Peterson added that Seacoast included participants from the Special Olympics in this year’s soccer-a-thon.

“They has such a great time and it was gratifying to have them participating with us.”

Another fundraiser Peterson mentioned was their Annual Gala held at the beautiful and historic Wentworth-by-the-Sea, in New Castle, New Hampshire. This is hosted by Ocean Properties, a business sponsor for Seacoast.

“All the proceeds from this go to our scholarship fund,” said Peterson.

All three Provider Power company’s , support Seacoast United’s Foundation through our Power To Help Initiative.  When enrolling with ENH Power, Electricity Maine or Provider Power Mass  customers select from a list of non-profit partners and we make a contribution to that organization.  

To learn more click on the link from the state you live in:


New Hampshire



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Green Living Energy Savings

How to Choose an Energy Efficient Ceiling Fan

On a normal summer day, no other household appliance consumes as much energy as the much-loved air conditioner. All the more reason to not forget about the humble ceiling fan.
A mid-size ceiling fan set on high for 12 hours per day costs just over a penny per hour in electricity or just about $3.50 per month

Air conditioning units, even the newest, most efficient models, occupy the top spot of the American energy consumption pyramid. On a normal summer day, no other household appliance consumes as much energy as the much-loved air conditioner — or even comes close. Roughly 25% of an average monthly electrical bill is consumed by a running air conditioning unit.

Now, consider the humble ceiling fan. A mid-size ceiling fan set on high for 12 hours per day costs just over a penny per hour in electricity or just about $3.50 per month. Even your curling iron uses more energy.

Three numbers to consider when shopping for a ceiling fan

Now that you are considering a ceiling fan to save money, you may as well consider an energy efficient one to further lower your household consumption. There are three numbers on the side of the box to look at:

  1. Airflow or CFM (Cubic Feet per Minute): Air flow, whether you’re talking about duct systems, bath fans, or ceiling fans, is measured in cubic feet per minute, usually called simply cfm. The higher the number, the more air is moving.
  2. Electricity Use (watts): Energy usage can be a bit confusing, but it’s important to remember that a watt is the unit of measurement for the rate of energy consumption. If the ceiling fan you are looking at includes a light, that will not be included in the electricity use rating to better allow an accurate comparison of the fan mechanism.
  3. Airflow Efficiency (or CFM/Watt): Efficiency is generally measured as output divided by input. In this case the output is airflow or CFM, divided by electricity use or watts

So what can we gather from these three numbers? You want high airflow or CFM with low electricity use or watts. Therefore, the higher the airflow efficiency number, the more efficient the fan. Other factors to consider are the size and height of the room. Energy Star provides an installation guide to help you choose the best size and mount for your ceiling fan. General rule of thumb is, get the biggest fan you can.

You have successfully installed your new ceiling fan. Now what?

As with any appliance, you have to know how and when to use it to get the best bang for your buck. In most homes in the U.S. ceiling fans don’t actually save much energy at all, but that’s not to say that they can’t. For all of the reasons that this article has laid out, ceiling fans can be a great money and energy saving tool, but you have to understand how and when to use them. Here are the rules of the road:

  1. Fans cool people, not rooms. The most important rule of using a ceiling fan to save energy is to turn it off when no one is there. The goal is to make your room feel cooler, allowing you to skip the AC. Ceiling fans don’t actually change the temperature of the room that much, but the circulating air does make the person inside the room feel cooler.
  2. Use the fan year-round. A ceiling fan set to run counterclockwise in the summer provides a cooling breeze. In the winter, reverse the motor to clockwise (most ceiling fans have this feature) for a gentle updraft, forcing warm air hiding out near the ceiling down. And don’t forget to adjust your thermostat to really realize these savings.
  3. Apply for a rebate. Energy Star often partners with appliance manufacturers to further incentivize use of energy efficient products. These savings can come in the form of federal tax credits or product rebates. As you continue to make improvements to your home, this website is a helpful tool to discover savings.

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Green Living Energy Savings

Keep cool with these 10 AC-free hacks

Does the idea of relying on an air-conditioner to keep cool get you hot? Here are some tips to keep cool, save a buck and keep the old air conditioner in storage.

According to Google, it’s going to cost you $300 over the course of the summer to run one air conditioning window unit. So which room do you choose? The bedroom? Your home office? The living room? Does your entire family huddle around this loud, dripping machine when summer is at its peak? Is there always someone in the house complaining it’s too cold?

The reluctant truth is, our grandparents survived without air conditioning, especially in New England. With a few common sense actions and a teeny bit of willingness to forgo optimum personal temperature at all times, you too can save some money and do a little bit more for the environment.

So what is your survival plan?

  1. Go CFL or LED. If you needed (another) reason, here it is. Incandescent bulbs waste about 90% of their energy in emitted heat. While CFLs and LEDs might only make a small difference in the temperature of your home, you’re also saving (more) electricity.
  2. Let the air in. Open up those windows at night. If you live in a noisy area, use a fan for white noise — it’s still more efficient than that AC unit. And if you live in the country, bask in the primal sounds of sleeping with the crickets and peepers. They will sing you sleep.
  3. Close the blinds. The early morning air is some of the coolest you will feel all day, but once that sun has broken the horizon and temperatures begin to climb, shut it down. Your home has captured what it can for cool air, so now trap it inside by closing windows and pulling blinds. It may seem counterintuitive, but your late morning/afternoon self will thank you.
  4. Grill, baby, grill. Stay away from the stove and get fireside. Cranking up a giant appliance to 350 inside the house is no way to end the day.
  5. Feel the freezer burn. Go ahead and stick those fresh cotton sheets in the freezer for a few minutes before turning in. Then enjoy a freshly made, pleasantly chilled bed.
  6. Get creative with air flow. If you thought fans were just for blowing in, think again. Turn your window box fan around and suck all of that hot air out. If you choose juxtaposing windows, the hot air will be sucked out and cooler air pulled in. Try different arrangements to figure out what works best in your home. If you’re lucky, you may even achieve the gold standard — a cross breeze.
  7. Go old-school. Place a large bowl or roasting pan of ice in front of the fan. The breeze will pick up the cool air and send it your way. Yes, people used to do this pre-AC and yes, it works!
  8. Down a quart? Fill ‘er up. Drinking water throughout the day gives your body the tools it needs to stay cooler through perspiration. Yes, your body is designed to sweat a little.
  9. Take a cold shower. It’s refreshing, saves energy, and studies show it can even make you an all around more productive person.
  10. Unplug. Disconnecting (not just turning off) electronics at night will bring the core temperature of your house down and save electricity.


While eating ice cream may seem like a natural plan for a hot day, counterintuitively, drinking a hot cup of tea can actually help to lower your body temperature and trigger your sweat glands.

These quick tips are effective ways to keep your cool when temperatures soar up over 80, but it’s also helpful to keep the long-view in mind. Consider investing the money you will save to plant trees and vines around your home, or installing awnings over windows. While $300 may seem worth it in the hottest months, remember that collectively we can make a big dent in excessive energy use.

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Featured Energy Savings

How the Federal Government Supports Energy Efficiency at Home

While federal programs certainly have their detractors, energy efficiency programs initiated by the Federal Government have been largely successful.

State or local governments have traditionally taken the lead when it comes to implementing energy efficiency programs for homeowners. Building codes, new construction incentives, home energy ratings, land use ordinances and energy efficient mortgages are decided upon and implemented by state and local governments to help curb the collective energy use of its residents.

Even in Maine where the Efficiency Maine program has been the subject of much controversy, programs administered by quasi-governmental agencies are very popular.

Meanwhile, the conversation in Washington, DC has largely leaned towards topics such as the Keystone XL Pipeline and high-level goals regulating efficiency in industry. While not unheard of, Congress has rarely had the opportunity to narrow the focus to the specific needs of homeowners and landlords in the debate.

While the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) reports that residential and commercial (excluding agricultural and industrial) greenhouse gas emissions only make up 12% of the total U.S. greenhouse gas output pie, that’s still 817 million metric tons of CO2. To put that into perspective, 1 million metric tons is roughly equivalent to the same physical mass as one million small cars. So, that’s the mass of 817 million Toyota Corollas worth of greenhouse gas released into the atmosphere every year by houses, apartment buildings, stores and restaurants.

A Bill in the Right Direction

Senator Rob Portman, Republican of Ohio, and Senator Jeanne Shaheen, Democrat of New Hampshire, have been working for years on bipartisan energy efficiency legislation. This April, they celebrated a significant victory with the passing of a bill that would create a voluntary program for landlords and tenants to improve energy efficiency in commercial buildings, mandate that large electric water heaters be run in a highly energy-efficient manner and require federal agencies to perform energy-use assessments on commercial buildings that they lease.

United States Environmental Protection Agency sign on the Clinton building
United States Environmental Protection Agency sign on the Clinton building

The Department of Energy’s National Appliance Energy Conservation Act is a small slice of the broader energy efficiency measures that the senators have been hammering at since 2011, but both Senators Shaheen and Portman are pleased with the recent victory and see it as a large step in the right direction.

“On the bill’s merits — creating jobs, saving consumers money and reducing pollution — it was never a hard sell,” Ms. Shaheen said. “The tough part was convincing Washington to not play politics with a good idea.”

Mr. Portman said, “Our targeted energy efficiency bill has garnered widespread support because of a simple fact: It is good for the economy and good for the environment.”

From recent coverage in the New York Times

Partisan gridlock will surely continue to play a role in the debate over Senators Portman and Shaheen’s broader goals, but for the time being this move is being celebrated by both parties.

What Does This Mean for Homeowners?

Starting in April, all newly manufactured water heaters have to be more efficient. Homeowners will see higher energy ratings on all residential gas, electric and tankless water heaters. The goal is to cut down on emissions and save billions of dollars in energy costs.

A residential water heater is the second largest consumer of energy in the home, right behind your heating and cooling system. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, heating water accounts for about 18 percent of energy consumption in households. Any improvement to a water heater’s efficiency is going to pay dividends in monthly utility bills, but the upfront cost will be up to 35% more expensive. Also, plan for a slightly larger tank in your basement, as the new and more efficient models are larger.

Tankless or even solar water heaters are also an option for those who don’t want to make room for the bulkier new appliances. Tankless heaters don’t have water storage containers, but instead heat water on demand, so hot water never runs out. Because they are already more efficient than heaters that use tanks, the new standards do not apply but they cost about three times more than regular heaters. Along with the monthly savings on your bill, tankless heaters last about three times longer than the average 8 to 10 year lifetime of heaters that use tanks.

The U.S. EPA’s ENERGY STAR Program is a great resource for homeowners to better understand where to find building and lifestyle inefficiencies and the products and incentives available to increase the efficiency of their home. ENERGY STAR was established by the EPA in 1992, and consumers can find a multitude of resources on the program’s website to help them navigate product choices and practices to help make their home or business more efficient. It also provides information about state and federal incentives to help push us all to more energy efficient choices.

As Senators Shaheen and Portman work to hammer home more federal legislation to increase energy efficiency both on an industrial level and at home, tools are available to make smarter and more efficient decisions for our homes and businesses. It’s better for the wallet and the environment.

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Business Capitalists with Heart

We Dream in Colour gains inspiration through giving

We Dream in Colour has an eye on the environment both as inspiration for her designs but also as a member of 1% for the Planet. Each year Gedeon and her “team of awesome women” get together and decide where to donate the 1% For the Planet funds.

The natural environment inspires one fast growing design company to give back

Jade Gedeon had no idea that what started as a project in college would eventually become Massachusetts-based jewelry design studio We Dream in Colour. While studying industrial design at the Pratt Institute, Gedeon played around using the cheap clear plastic Shrinky Dink kits as a medium for bird illustrations. “I was in college, there wasn’t exactly money for diamonds,” she explains.

WDIC_3762edThe illustrations were then strung on a cord and made into a necklace. “It really was some awful stuff,” Gedeon admits. Well the “awful stuff” went onto a website launched by her then-roommate, which was quickly picked up by fashion, beauty and entertainment blog Daily Candy.

“They ran a piece on us and I think they had 2 million subscribers at the time. From there people and bloggers kept finding us, and the whole business has continued to grow in this beautiful, organic way.” Gedeon now employs three women full-time, and brings on additional help during seasonal production upswings.

Evolving from Shrinky Dink kit jewelry to finding her niche in beautiful, rustic, environmentally inspired styles solidly constructed with materials such as reclaimed brass, sterling silver, diamonds and pressed glass, Gedeon has her eye on the environment both as inspiration for her designs but also as a member of 1% for the Planet.

WDIC_book1% For the Planet is a thirteen year old organization dedicated to building, supporting and activating an alliance of businesses financially committed to creating a healthy planet. Founded in 2002 by Yvon Chouinard, founder of Patagonia, and Craig Mathews, owner of Blue Ribbon Flies, 1% For the Planet member companies have collaboratively invested over $100 million dollars in positive environmental change.

When asked why We Dream in Colour became a 1% member, Gedeon hands the credit over to her sister, who used to work at Patagonia and now runs the We Dream in Colour office.

“It’s like we are handed this hunk of money every year to give back to the community as we’d like. I know it’s technically money that we have made, but when you’re doing something because it’s right and not because it’s profitable, you really feel the rewards.”

Each year Gedeon and her “team of awesome women” get together and decide where to donate the 1% For the Planet funds.

Each year Gedeon and her “team of awesome women” get together and decide where to donate the 1% For the Planet funds. Every year they give to the Essex County Greenbelt, an association right in their hometown that preserves and provides a direct connection with nature. Some other favorite non-profits include Massachusetts Audubon, The Food Project and Surfrider Foundation.

We Dream in Colour’s 1% pledge sees a lot of positive feedback from customers and retailers, which is of course good for business. But Jade Gedeon and her staff seem to have a more deep-seeded reason for giving.

“The natural environment has informed and inspired so much of the work we do here. You make something beautiful, work hard and people appreciate that. So if you can give back, do it. Do it because it’s right, not because it’s profitable.”

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Green Living New Hampshire

ENH Power Teams UP with Hanover N.H. For Green Power Challenge

ENH Power and the Town of Hanover New Hampshire teamed up for a very successful project, Hanover's Green Power Challenge. ENH Power provided a competitive rate for Green-E certified electricity, each new enrollment also helped generate funds for Children’s Hospital at Dartmouth-Hitchcock (CHaD

Case Study: Hanover Green Power Challenge


The Town of Hanover, NH has a goal to be 20% green by 2017. Part of reaching this goal includes buying electricity from 100% renewable sources. The town had formed a committee called Sustainable Hanover to focus on these efforts.  Some of the committee members knew ENH Power had a good reputation and offered a Pure Green electricity rate.

In the winter of 2015, the committee reached out to Candace Sanborn, Vice President of Provider Power, the parent of ENH Power, to ask if we could offer an even higher level of green power, Green-E certified electricity.

Green-E certified electricity is the nation’s leading independent designation by the EPA for certifying and verifying renewable energy. They also wanted the energy sources to be located largely in New England.  While a competitive price was important to Sustainable Hanover, it was not the primary driver.



ENH Power had no previous experience with Green-E certified electricity, but agreed to do the research to see what it could offer.  Led by our Vice President of Supply & Pricing, Neil McKellar, during the winter in 2015, ENH Power determined that it could make this happen and worked with Sustainable Hanover to determine how this program would be structured.

The chief issue was that electricity is a commodity and pricing moves relatively quickly as a result of demand, weather and other factors.  Setting a specific price that Sustainable Hanover could quote to residents over a period of time would be a challenge.

Rate/Terms and Promotion

To solve this issue, ENH proposed a 6-week campaign from mid-April to May, 2015 when electricity pricing would be favorable. The group could give residents a price range, the lowest and highest potential price they would pay, based on how many residents participated – the larger the number, the lower the rate.  Either way, ENH determined that the rate would be slightly less than the average rate a resident would pay over the proposed term – 16 months – had they stayed with their utility. This rate would be listed on a custom web page on ENH Power’s website that Sustainable Hanover would promote, asking people to complete a short information form indicating their intent to enroll. Sustainable Hanover liked the idea and together they crafted a roll-out plan.

ENH Power worked with Sustainable Hanover on language for the email announcements and talking points that Sustainable Hanover would use to promote the “Hanover Green Power Challenge” to residents. The committee also organized and promoted a kick-off event in early May 2015 at the local community center where ENH Power stood side by side with Sustainable Hanover, providing handouts and showing videos, to promote the program to approximately 50 residents. The committee sent out additional emails and spoke to friends, colleagues and family members.

In addition to the kick-off event, Hanover publicized the program on the town website, sent out a press-release and the committee included information on various social media channels.  ENH Power created a unique landing page on their website, using real time personalizing presented information on their website to viewers of their site from specific regions of New Hampshire, and created targeted social media posts.

Through their Power to Help initiative, ENH Power also announced that they would contribute $5 for each enrollment to the Children’s Hospital at Dartmouth-Hitchcock (CHaD).  CHaD has been a long term non-profit partner of ENH Power.


The effort was a huge success, surpassing the group’s expectations with nearly 400 households signing up by the deadline of May 31, 2015. ENH confirmed the rate – which was on the lower end of the scale because of the high volume of participants – and Sustainable Hanover emailed residents telling them the good news.  Residents then had three business days to change their mind, and one person opted out. As a result their success, Sustainable Hanover is interested in doing another Challenge in the fall of 2015, this time including small businesses.

According to Sanborn, Sustainable Hanover’s strong leadership, commitment, and excellent communication were the keys to this success. “They were an absolute pleasure to work with. I look forward to our next round!”

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