architecture


A friend of mine, Nelson Oller, lives in Mason City Illinois and is in Ameren’s service territory. They have a whole house approach to reducing their residential customers electricity consumption. This program is great. They are helping with insulation and state-of-the-art equipment. He has to spent 2 grand for 10 thousand dollars worth of stuff. One of the thinks he was telling me about was a vent fan for the bathroom that could act as a whole house plan. I had never herd of such a thing, but according to this article it has been around for several years now.

http://www.greenbuildingadvisor.com/blogs/dept/musings/bathroom-exhaust-fans

 

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Bathroom Exhaust Fans

Bath fans help remove odors and moisture — and can be used in some homes to satisfy whole-house ventilation requirements

Posted on Aug 7 2014 by Martin Holladay
Older homes often lack bathroom exhaust fans. In the old days, if the bathroom was smelly or steamy, you were supposed to open a window to air it out.

This isn’t a very logical ventilation method, especially when temperatures are below zero, or when the weather is 90°F and humid. Yet this time-honored method of bathroom ventilation is still enshrined in our building codes. According to the 2009 International Residential Code (sections R303.3 and M1507.3), a bathroom with an operable window does not need to have a bath exhaust fan.

Why do we need exhaust fans?

In spite of the code’s archaic loophole, builders should install an exhaust fan in every bathroom or toilet room — even when the bathroom has a window.

A bath exhaust fan can perform several functions:

  • It can exhaust smelly air, allowing fresher air to enter the bathroom.
  • It can exhaust humid air, allowing dryer air to enter the bathroom.
  • When operated for 24 hours per day or when controlled by a timer, it can act (in some cases) as the most important component of a whole-house ventilation system.
Designing an exhaust-only ventilation system is a topic unto itself, and is beyond the scope of this article. For more information on exhaust-only ventilation systems, see Designing a Good Ventilation System.

Where does the makeup air come from?

When the bathroom door is closed and the fan is operating, where is the makeup air coming from?

If the bathroom has an exterior wall, some of the makeup air is coming from the exterior — for example, through leaks around the window or baseboard.

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Go there and read. More next week.

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The news only gets better for renewables. Wind did not keep pace with Solar but wind had a huge head start. Coal is fading in the rear view mirror and natural gas is neck and neck. I think the US is finally catching on, but you can bet the first things Trump will go after will be subsidies and the EPA.

http://www.greencarreports.com/news/1108084_more-solar-energy-was-added-in-2016-than-natural-gas-or-wind

More solar energy was added in 2016 than natural gas or wind

Renewable-energy growth has accelerated in 2016, but this may go down as a milestone year for one renewable-energy source in particular.

Together, all renewable-energy sources are expected to account for 8 percent of U.S. electricity-generation capacity in 2017, according to the Department of Energy, and solar energy is responsible for most of that growth.

For the first time ever, new solar-generating capacity is expected to exceed new generating capacity for wind and natural gas.

DON’T MISS: We’re there! Renewables now cheapest unsubsidized electricity in U.S.

The final tally won’t be available until March, but enough new solar installations were expected to be completed in 2016 to outpace wind and natural gas, according to Scientific American.

A total of 9.5 gigawatts of solar-generating capacity were expected to be built in 2016, tripling the amount installed in 2015, the magazine said, citing Energy Department data.

That amount would exceed the anticipated 8.0 GW of natural gas capacity, and 6.8 GW of wind capacity.

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Go there and cheer. More next week.

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Natural gas is cheap. Solar Photovoltaics are even cheaper. The job prospects in renewables are growing as fast as miners jobs are falling. Donald Trump may think he is all powerful but even if the Russian mob boss Putin joins in, China, India and Australia never will. Seems to me that is the end of the story.

http://www.computerworld.com/article/3166897/sustainable-it/report-1-in-50-new-us-jobs-came-from-solar-last-year.html

Report: 1 in 50 new U.S. jobs came from solar last year

Employment in the industry rose in 44 states and is expected to continue growing

One out of every 50 new U.S. jobs last year came from the solar industry, with growth in that industry outpacing the overall U.S. economy by 17 times, according to a new report.

Overall, there were 260,077 solar workers in 2016, representing 2% of all new jobs, according to The Solar Foundation’s Solar Jobs Census 2016.

Solar employment increased by more than 51,000 workers, a 25% increase over 2015, according to the report. Solar industry employment has nearly tripled since the first National Solar Jobs Census was released in 2010 — rising at least 20% annually for the past four years.

Along with growth in solar and other forms of renewables, energy storage is a rapidly growing industry, comprising 90,831 jobs — of which 47,634 are focused on battery storage.

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Go there and cheer, I mean read. More next week.

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To Not talk about how disastrous Trump’s Presidency will be for the environment and the energy industry I decided to return to my roots in the residential market. Todays article is a bit old but its message is timeless. We have been concentrating on single devices like furnaces, refrigerators, windows seen as a whole instead of a holistic approach to a house.

https://www.greentechmedia.com/articles/read/the-real-problem-with-energy-efficiency

We’re Doing Residential Energy Efficiency All Wrong

Utilities are now spending nearly $7 billion a year on energy-efficiency programs. It seems we have little to show for it aside from expensive consultants who will model any results you would like.

These programs tend to focus their marketing on the energy savings or money savings from the projects. Consumers don’t care. If they did, we would see geometric growth instead of a resounding “meh.”

Others focus on better financing products, slicker sales pitches, faster energy audits, higher rebates or any of a myriad of other things.

In the residential sector, none of these are the problem. The lack of sales is the problem.

Projects are not being sold and implemented in substantial numbers. We need to slow it down, build relationships with consumers and educate them, learn and think systemically about the problems they have, and arrive at solutions that fit homeowner budgets.

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Go there and read alot. It is a long article. More next week.

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THIS!  Donald Trump wants to return the United States to the 1950s. Unfortunately the Earth doesn’t have the atmosphere for it. We used it up. Yet, they are gonna try. We could die as a result.

http://trib.com/business/energy/bill-would-penalize-utilities-for-wind-generated-electricity-for-wyoming/article_fa25328e-aa4b-561f-9955-0995b9118e23.html

featured

Bill would penalize utilities for wind-generated electricity for Wyoming customers

A bill proposed by six state lawmakers would charge utilities a penalty if they use wind or solar energy to provide Wyoming consumers with electricity.

If Senate File 71 were law, there would be six permissible resources for generating electricity for Wyomingites, including natural gas and coal. Wind and solar are not on the list, except for individual use.

Utilities would have a year to reach the first compliance milestone of the bill, in which each company would have to get 95 percent of its Wyoming-sold energy from the approved resources.

The following year, 2019, companies must reach 100 percent compliance.

Under the bill, if electricity were generated by wind or solar in Wyoming to serve customers in the state it would come with a $10-per-megawatt-hour penalty. That penalty would be double the suggested tax hike on wind also under consideration this legislative session.

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Go there and read while you can. More next week.

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Oh my god. Is this my worse nightmare or what? A committed driller traveling the world for American Interests. What is the future of renewable energy, conservation and the sane use of scarce resources. I am sure he will encourage people to LEAVE their resources in the ground.

BUT he did say he believed in Climate Change.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/10/us/politics/trump-cabinet-confirmation-hearings-live.html?_r=0

Kaine challenges Tillerson on climate change views

Mr. Tillerson, facing questions about Exxon Mobil’s history with climate science, admitted to at least a measure of strategic obfuscation during his testimony.

Senator Tim Kaine, Democrat of Virginia, said that despite Mr. Tillerson’s view on climate change, Exxon continued to provide funding to groups that obscure the scientific consensus. He asked Mr. Tillerson to clarify what Exxon Mobil knew about climate change despite its public claims through the years.

“Senator, since I’m no longer with Exxon Mobil, I’m in no position to speak on their behalf,” Mr. Tillerson said.

Mr. Kaine reminded Mr. Tillerson that he was asking about Mr. Tillerson’s own experience, which included more than four decades at Exxon. “Do you lack the knowledge to answer my question, or do you refuse to answer my question?” Mr. Kaine asked.

“A little of both,” Mr. Tillerson said, to laughs.

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Go there and read so much stuff. More next week.

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1 0 years ago if you would have tried to hold this tour there would have been 2 stops in Springfield, and the rest would have been as far away as Decatur and Peoria. Now there are 16 in Springfield alone. Give me a big HallelujaH!

http://www.sj-r.com/news/20160925/16-springfield-sites-part-of-saturdays-illinois-solar-tour

16 Springfield sites part of Saturday’s Illinois solar tour

  • By David Blanchette, Correspondent

Posted Sep. 25, 2016 at 6:56 PM

  • Updated Sep 25, 2016 at 8:48 PM

    More than 130 sites across the state will hold open houses Saturday for people to learn about sun-generated power, including 16 sites in Springfield.

    “The solar tour is an opportunity to educate the public about how affordable and reliable clean energy, particularly solar energy, is,” said Lesley McCain, executive director of the Illinois Solar Energy Association, which is coordinating the tour. “I hope that people understand how easy this is. It is much cheaper and cleaner to get our energy from above, the sun, instead of having to dig under the ground to get coal, oil or gas.

McCain said only a lack of state solar incentives, a victim of Illinois’ ongoing budget problems, may be holding back some who have considered solar power as an option. The federal incentive has been extended, and many local utility companies like Springfield’s City Water, Light and Power also offer enticements to use alternative energy sources like solar, she said.

Making own ‘juice’

Saturday’s tour of solar installations can be taken the “green” way in Springfield with the Springfield Bicycle Club, which will offer a morning ride starting at 10 a.m. at Southwind Park and an afternoon ride that leaves at 1 p.m. from the Capitol Complex Visitors Center at 425 S. College St. Bicycle Doctor owner Robert LaBonte is helping to set up the bicycle tours, and he also will showcase the solar installations at his business and an adjacent residence.

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Go there and read a lot more. I am going on vacation. More in a couple of weeks.

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Springfield’s coal fired power plant is not compliant with the Clean Air Act. Apparently it won’t be anytime soon.

http://www.sj-r.com/news/20160727/illinois-epa-seeks-comment-on-cwlp-clean-air-permit

Illinois EPA seeks comment on CWLP clean air permit

By Mary Hansen
Staff Writer

Posted Jul. 27, 2016 at 5:58 PM

Springfield residents can ask questions and comment on proposed updates to an air pollution permit for City Water, Light and Power’s generating station at a public hearing Aug 30.

The Illinois Environmental Protection Agency is holding the 7 p.m. hearing at the University of Illinois Springfield’s Public Affairs Center.

The state agency is gathering comments in its process to update a Clean Air Act permit for CWLP. Under the Clean Air Act, the federal government sets limits for certain pollutants.

The changes to the permit include regulations for CWLP’s newest power plant unit, Dallman 4, which was not covered under the original permit. It also has requirements that were not law when the Illinois EPA issued the permit for Dallman 4, such as emission limits for mercury and other air toxins. The city-owned utility has been required to comply with these standards, but the permit allows the federal and state agencies, as well as the public, to monitor and enforce them.

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Go there and read. Google the topic too. More next week.

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I have written so much about generation lately, that I forgot to say anything about storage. At least in awhile. The article below describes some progress being made on this front.

http://www.theverge.com/2016/7/13/12166824/facecbook-smartphone-testing-lab-battery-life-prineville-data-center

Inside the secret lab where Facebook tries to save your battery life

Deep inside Facebook’s very first data center, located in a sprawling facility in the hills of Prineville, OR, lies a series of about 60 server racks. Each one houses 32 smartphones, all of which are running a version of one of Facebook’s many mobile apps. The company calls this setup the Mobile Device Lab, and it’s designed to test Facebook’s software on older phones to discover whether any bit of a new code, no matter how minor, results in a dip in performance or poorer battery life. For those smartphone owners who tote around a two- or even three-year-old device — and users in developing countries purchasing lower-cost devices for the first time — the lab is the very reason Facebook is still a viable home screen staple.

Antoine Reversat, part of Facebook’s production engineering team, opens one of the racks for a group of reporters during its first Oregon data center tour in almost three years this week. Behind a large black metal door sit 32 iPhone 5C devices all in the process of either scrolling through the News Feed, testing various operations’ lag on battery consumption, or rebooting to resume an identical state before running yet another test. In each server row sits more than a dozen racks, some holding devices as old as the iPhone 4 and others housing newer Google Nexus 5s. In total, Facebook has almost 2,000 handsets used to tell developers when they’ve screwed something up, and whether that degradation is only noticeable on an older phone.

With Facebook serving more than 1.65 billion users around the world, taking into account every variation in device type, mobile operating system, and network condition has become an increasingly complex operation. Entire companies have built robust operations around testing mobile software in similar fashion, and some of those startups have been scooped up by big-name competitors. In 2014, Google bought San Francisco-based mobile app tester Appurify. Facebook’s engineers, on the other hand, figured the company could do the job itself, especially considering it had the computing power and server rack space at its expansive Oregon data center.

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Go there and read. It is a highly technical article and did i say long. More next week.

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But I am betting that those kinks will be worked out. They do need create a Southern Grid and really grow the system to take care of a growing population. They also will need to plan for a growing industrial base.

http://www.popularmechanics.com/technology/a21228/chile-solar-energy-surplus/

Chile Generates So Much Solar Power That It Just Gives the Extra Away

It sounds great, but it’s actually bad news for the energy industry.

Chile has so much solar energy that the price of solar frequently drops to zero, which is great news for consumers but frustrating for energy companies and investors.

Under President Michelle Bachelet, Chile has been aggressively expanding its solar energy generation, adding 371 megawatts of solar power last year alone. However, construction of new energy infrastructure has lagged behind, with no national power grid and many unserviced areas. This leads to an overabundance of power in certain areas while others get left out.

 This overabundance has led to the spot price, or current price, of solar dropping to zero over a hundred times so far this year through April. Bloomberg reports that this number is set to beat 2015’s total, which saw 192 such price drops for the whole year.
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Go there and read. More next week.

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