Time to switch that ’stat

Calgary Herald New Condos - - New Condos - KATHY MC­CORMICK

With the late sum­mer heat upon us, it’s a good time to think about re­plac­ing your old, mer­cury-con­tain­ing ther­mo­stat. Not only are they not en­vi­ron­men­tally friendly, they are a worry to home­own­ers’ health.

Switch the Stat is an in­dus­try-led ini­tia­tive that en­cour­ages Cana­di­ans to re­place their old ther­mostats with en­ergy-ef­fi­cient, pro­gram­mable units to help re­duce en­ergy con­sump­tion and green­house gas emis­sions.

Older me­chan­i­cal ther­mostats can have up to four mer­cury switches, each con­tain­ing about 2.5 grams of mer­cury. It only takes one gram of mer­cury to con­tam­i­nate an eight-hectare lake to the point where the fish in that lake are ined­i­ble for a year.

Since the Switch the Stat pro­gram launched in 2006 it has col­lected more than 45,000 mer­cury-con­tain­ing ther­mostats.

Visit www.switchthe­s­tat.ca to find con­trac­tors reg­is­tered in the pro­gram in this area.

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