June Newsletter | How to Cut Your Energy Bill, New Construction Project, Upcoming Camps & Workshops

We've got some exciting updates this month! We committed to a new sustainable construction project, camps & workshops, and formed neat partnerships.

If you haven't yet joined our newsletter, sign up to receive this post straight to your inbox each month! We'll send you a recap of what we've been up to - our projects, blog posts, and upcoming community events.

We promise to always keep our emails short, clear, interesting, and educational!


Water and energy were the focus of this month's blog posts!

Water treatment and processing is often overlooked because of its relatively low cost and necessity. However, due to overuse, municipalities in Canada pay an astounding $260 million dollars every year just to power their water and wastewater systems.

With only 33.4% of Ontario energy being generated by renewable sources, this burden on the energy grid is responsible for a large portion of municipally-generated dangerous pollutants. Now, more than ever, reducing our carbon footprint and energy use should be among our top priorities.

We partnered with 3 local Kingston businesses to help you be more sustainable every day! Our three winners were selected and announced last week. We loved reading the funny and creative responses to our "Caption This" prompt.

Does your energy bill frighten you each time you open it? Or do you just have an unexplained aversion to big numbers? From turning off the lights, toinsulating against air leaks and heating your home passively, we put together a list of five science-backed ways to cut your monthly energy consumption.


You can find our complete and regularly updated events calendar at our website.

We're going to be very busy this month with 8 private workshops and children's camps booked so far. We are working with the following organizations:


  • The team attended the June 19 Beaty Water Research Center's Seminar Series talk by Dr. Lei Liu. She spoke about the topic: "More than Refining and Chemicals: an Overview of Imperial Environmental Research Program". Team selfie from the event pictured below.

  • Ran a giveaway in partnership with local Kingston companies Boho and Hobo StudioQueen's Common Ground and Sustainable Kingston. We got some funny and creative submissions to our "Caption This" prompt!

  • Cleaned the office and found old photographs from 1990s. It didn't say that on the photographs, but the haircuts and outfits were a dead giveaway.

  • Interviewed Mark Ouseley, a Queen's PhD Student in the Department of Geography studying Biogas Technologies. You can look forward to seeing the video interview up this week!

  • Sustainable Buildings Canada has generously provided the team with tickets to the Green Building Festival in Toronto this October! We're very excited to hear what the green building experts and speakers have to say.

  • We're enjoying wearing our donated Awesome & Beyond team shirts at all the events we go to! They're a local custom print shop here in Kingston!

Big Spoon Lil Spoon Mobile Coffee Cart We recently confirmed a new project: building a mobile coffee cart in partnership with Big Spoon Lil Spoon. This month, we gathered materials from the Wolfe Island Recycling Center, Kiiji, and Habitat for Humanity ReStore. Over 80% of the cart will be made from recycled or second hand materials, including wood from old shipping pallets, wheels from a lawn mower and metal parts from a barbeque.

Partnerships We're partnering with some really neat companies. Visit our Partners Page to read about their impact!

  • Big Spoon 'Lil Spoon

  • Sunwind Solar

  • Vericool

  • Sustainably.eco by Sustainable Kingston

  • Sustainable Buildings Canada


Mechanical Systems

  • Boiler installation plan. Auxiliary heating is needed to supply a reliable and consistent source of hot water at the QSEC. We are planning to install a propane powered boiler to meet the required demand.

Civil Systems

  • Technical Research. More time is being spent on research and development for new Civil projects. For the next 2-3 weeks, emphasis will be placed on researching strategies used by leading industry projects.

  • QSEC Water Delivery System. Consultation with Dr. Stephen Harrison, our team supervisor, revealed some ways for the mechanical team and civil team to work together on the QSEC water system. The latest design involves building a closed loop system similar to a well pump that supplies up to 3 faucets in the house.

Electrical Systems

  • Datalogging and live data. Data including temperatures around the house, solar irradiance, rainfall, and wind speed and direction has been brought back online on the QSDT website.

  • Wiring needs. Completed assessing all the wire needs for hooking up the inverter at the QSEC according to the requirements of the CEC and identified possible mounting locations for the inverter.

  • Solar tracker. The new PCB for the prototype solar tracker has been set up and tested. Additional debugging and improvements will be made on the prototype over the next month in preparation for our summer workshops.

Business Operations

  • Event planning and meetings. This month, we're running workshops and camps, which we've been busy researching and preparing for. We also are working with other Queen's organizations for some upcoming events in September and October.

  • Sponsors and partnerships. The Partners page was redesigned to include partner profiles and their impact. We also established some new partnerships this month, and redefined our value offerings for the companies we work with. If you are interested in working with our team, please reach out to business@qsdt.net.

  • Advisors and feedback. This month, we also reached out to on-campus resources within the AMS, EngSoc, and various departments for feedback on our current marketing and sponsorship initiatives. Thank you to everyone who consulted with us!

Interested in environmental stewardship, green technologies, and engineering sustainable living solutions? Our blog is open to submissions and we'd love to include your content in our editorial calendar. To work with us, reach out to business@qsdt.net!

Click here to view the online version of this newsletter.

12 views0 comments


We will not be hosting in-person workshops, community events, or QSEC Tours. Please contact us to inquire about hosting online events for your organization.

We thank you for your ongoing support.