architecture


It is true. Not in my backyard is a syndrome that can be defused but you have to start early and you have to speak often and sincerely. Utility Executives just do not have the right touch and even when they care they hire bright shiny faces that lack any sense of truthfulness.

http://www.midwestenergynews.com/2013/02/26/new-england-offshore-wind-planning-offers-lessons-for-great-lakes/

New England offshore wind planning offers lessons for Great Lakes

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When Scandia, a Norwegian wind company, announced its plans to install 200 turbines in Lake Michigan four miles from the tourist town of Ludington, Michigan, in 2009, they likely didn’t anticipate the controversy that would erupt.

After all, the project would be delivering domestically produced renewable energy to replace planet-warming fossil fuels. It would create local jobs installing and operating the turbines. A nearby pumped-hydro facility for storing backup energy sat in the nearby dunes, complete with substations and high-voltage lines they could use to move electricity from their offshore turbines to the grid.

“The developer thought, We’ll build wind farms out in Lake Michigan, hook up in Ludington, and everyone will be delighted,” recalled Arn Boezaart, director of the Michigan Alternative and Renewable Energy Center at Grand Valley State University.

Instead, “they were basically run out of town,” Boezaart recalled.

Residents of this picturesque town were outraged about the prospects of scores of wind turbines ruining their view. Nobody had consulted them. And Michigan, like every other Great Lakes state, lacks even a rudimentary procedure for regulating offshore wind farms, without which there would be little opportunity for public hearings.

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Go there and read. More later.

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Well I got a new computer and so I am back. The old computer is getting the data transferred from it so I can have it on the new system.  I do not have many tools at hand as a result. This  system has to have the data transferred to it soon so I will not post here again for awhile. But here is a sign of progress.

http://www.greenbuildingadvisor.com/homes/rossetto-vermont-house

Super Energy-Efficient Home in Vermont

Waitsfield, VT

Oct 10 2008 By Rob Wotzak

Modest House Built to Scandinavian Green Standards

This modest home may not seem out of the ordinary, but energy efficiency specialist Efficiency Vermont calls it extraordinary — “Best of the Best” and “the most energy efficient home in the state,” to be specific. With a HERS score of 95.3 out of 100, and four years of energy bills to document its performance, the building deserves the accolades. Builder Al Rossetto leaves nothing to chance: he has used the same construction details to lock in five-star Energy Star ratings for every home he has built since.

Is Vermont the new Scandinavia?
The shallow, frost-protected footing is possibly this home’s most unusual detail. Northern Vermont’s deep frost line and rocky soil make building conventional foundations a challenge. A shallow bed of gravel surrounded by a horizontal apron of rigid foam insulation — a system used in Scandinavia for decades — worked well here.

When paired with an insulated concrete form (ICF) foundation, this system ended up saving energy and materials. The walls and roof are all structural insulated panels (SIPs), which go up quickly and provide a tight shell. Energy efficient windows with triple glazing and multiple low-e layers (also standard equipment in Scandinavia) complete the package.

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Go there and read. More later.

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This house is air tight and over powered. These are 2 things that really turn me on. A night in that house would be a continous orgasm. Oh and did I mention that the house is in Sweden.

http://www.mnn.com/your-home/remodeling-design/blogs/villa-%C3%A5karp-a-super-efficient-home-that-scores-an-a-in-surplus-ene

Villa Åkarp: A super-efficient home that scores an A+ in surplus energy production
After construction wrapped up in 2009, Villa Åkarp’s energy-plus ambitions have come true: The super-insulated Swedish home’s rooftop solar system generates an excess of 600kWh annually.
Tue, Sep 11 2012 at 5:36 PM
Keeping up with today’s mini-trend of (shockingly) non-IKEA-related housing news coming out of Sweden, I thought I’d revisit a notable residential building project located outside of the city of Malmö that I first made mention of way back in November 2009.
When I intially caught wind of said project, Villa Åkarp, it was under construction with the lofty ambition of becoming an energy-plus (or positive) home. In other words, the three-bedroom, two-bathroom home is not only influenced by stringent Passivhaus building standards that focus on energy recovery and conservation (high amounts of insulation, triple pane windows, thermal recovery, strategic building orientation, etc.), but energy generation as well. Thanks in part to a 32-square-meter rooftop photovoltaic array, the now-completed residence produces significantly more energy than it consumes. In all, the airtight home’s solar panels produce around 4,200 kilowatt hours (kWh) of juice per year (mainly during the summer months) with a surplus of around 600kWh annually that’s fed back into the grid in a partnership with local green utility provider E. ON. That’s enough energy to power another energy-efficient home for two months.

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Go there and then to the original to read. More tomorrow.

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Carol Kneedler, who runs CES’ website, forwarded this to me and I thought it was a good way to plug her business. Thanks Carol for all you do.

  • O3 Internet Consulting

    Owner · Jul 2007 to present
    I create websites that are beautiful, practical and functional. In short, they work.

http://ksmu.org/article/small-ozarks-farm-provides-innovative-example-sustainable-living-50451#.UNoqJWCh7_Y.facebook

Small Ozarks Farm Provides Innovative Example For Sustainable Living

 Article | | By Shane Franklin

One farm in the Ozarks is the location of a series of unique experiments in sustainable living.  If these experiments prove successful, it would greatly affect the future of sustainable technologies and how people think about building their homes. KSMU’s Shane Franklin had the opportunity to tour the farm, and has this story.

Rockspan Farm, the home of Dan and Margy Chiles, is unique in so many ways. They wanted to build a farm that could be an example to others, and a test lab for experimental technologies they’ve been personally developing over the years.

“We are trying a number of new technologies here to make houses more efficient and to make a livable space without having to burn a lot of coal.

 

http://www.danchiles.macmate.me/rockspan/RockSpan/Home.html

RockSpan maps and overview

RockSpan is the name for our 12 acre farm and house in western Greene County, Missouri.

 

The project is the West end of Division street, 11 miles from Springfield, Missouri.   The colorful plan below shows the family farm: approximately 227 acres outlined in red with a possible land use plan.  Our 12 acres are inside the larger farm.

 

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Go there, read and see all the pretty pictures. More tomorrow.

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I know that Dufus is at the same time a village name in Ireland as well as a clan name. So excuse me if I use the America slang term for the stupidest person around. But the United States’ economy and its economic policy have been led by angry stupid old white guys for way too long. Coal is dead. Natural gas is an illusion and nuclear is a joke. I say, “let’s get on with it”.

http://um.dk/en/news/newsdisplaypage/?newsid=25147b44-3dce-4647-8788-ad9243c22df2

Denmark reaches 2020-goal for solar energy before time

12.09.2012  14:24

Already this year, Denmark will reach the 2020 Government goal of 200 megawatt solar cell capacity.

Huge interest for solar energy solutions has made the amount of solar cells multiply much faster than expected. This is made possible by favourable framework conditions. In fact the solar cell capacity will be a hundred times bigger this year compared with 2010. Currently 36 MW capacity is being mounted every month.

Danish energy sector players, Dansk Energi, Energinet.dk and DONG Energy, estimate that this development will result in 1000 MW by 2020 and 3400 MW by 2030.

 

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Go there and read. More tomorrow.

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I forgot to give this website credit for yesterday’s post. That is a small journalistic boo boo and I will clear that up now.

http://www.wind-works.org/

What Can Be Found on This Site

This site contains information about my books, an archive of my articles, and descriptions of my workshops on wind energy and Advanced Renewable Tariffs. This site also contains an extensive collection of articles and technical reports on electricity feed laws or renewable energy tariffs. I’ve been an outspoken proponent of feed laws since the late 1990s when I urged the American Wind Energy Association to call for them nationally.

Photography

My photos are stocked by Still Pictures in London. For more on my photography and for photo tours of several wind farms as well as a sampling of wind energy icons, see the photos section of this site.

 

Small Turbine Testing

Beginning in 1997 I’ve measured the performance and noise emissions of small wind turbines at the Wulf Test Field in the Tehachapi Pass. For more information on this work, visit Wulf Test Field.

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Go there and read. More tomorrow.

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Not much to say about this. Conference summaries are always difficult to interpret. You miss all the personal conversations, updates, and sense of the future. Still it is a snapshot.

http://www.greentechmedia.com/articles/read/Utility-Scale-PV-Developers-Confront-Future-of-Solar-Project-Business

Utility-Scale PV Developers Confront Future of Solar Project Business

They want the “doable renewables.”

Herman K. Trabish: November 1, 2012

Building utility-scale PV solar projects is getting tougher. Greentech Media’s U.S. Solar Market Insight conference concluded with a discussion between experienced developers about the challenges and opportunities.

Moderator and GTM Research Senior Analyst Shyam Mehta asked them to first review the last year.

“In summer of last year, the IOUs issued RFPs, the first in over two years,” 8minutenergy CEO Martin Hermann recalled. “More than 70,000 megawatts of applications were submitted. They shortlisted about 2,500 megawatts.”

The ISO queue has dropped from 80,000 megawatts to 50,000 megawatts and utilities are “looking very diligently to see if there are any show stoppers” before signing contracts. In this “tough competition for PPAs,” Hermann said, developers are “monetizing or cancelling their portfolios.”

In three years, explained SunEdison (NYSE:WFR) General Manager Attila Toth, the U.S. solar market will be 50 percent distributed generation and 50 percent utility scale projects. But about 85 percent of the 3.5 gigawatts to 3.8 gigawatts of utility projects “is already spoken for, in the queues and has company’s names written on it. There is a very limited opportunity in the utility segment.”

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Go there and read. More next week.

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Here is the MIT report.

http://www.technologyreview.com/news/428423/new-solar-panel-designs-make-installation-cheaper/

 

New Solar Panel Designs Make Installation Cheaper

Companies in Germany and China have made simpler designs that make it easier and quicker to mount panels to roofs.

With solar panel prices falling more than 80 percent in the last few years, many solar companies are turning their attention to reducing the cost of installing them. Two leading solar companies, Solon Energy, based in Berlin, and Trina Solar, based in Changzhou, China, have announced new designs for mounting solar panels to roofs—the companies say these designs can reduce the installation time by more than half, greatly reducing labor costs. The new designs reduce or eliminate the tools and hardware needed to install solar panels, and standardize solar installations, which have largely been ad hoc, reducing the time needed to design them.

While solar panels themselves used to account for most of the cost of large solar installations on commercial rooftops, the modules now account for about 40 percent of the cost. The rest comes from things like the necessary hardware, power electronics, and labor—which alone accounts for about 30 percent of the total.

Mounting solar panels on the flat rooftops of commercial installations typically involves anchoring long metal racks to the roof to create a framework that will angle the panels toward the sun and hold them together. Installers bolt the panels to this frame, wire the panels together, and electrically ground the racks.

 

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Go there and read. More tomorrow.

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The coal companies and the utility companies in this country are morally repugnant and ecologically a disaster.

http://www.sfgate.com/business/article/Solar-energy-is-ready-the-U-S-isn-t-3988796.php

Solar energy is ready, the U.S. isn’t

By Ken Wells
Published 5:07 p.m., Sunday, October 28, 2012

Clean energy has become a dirty word in presidential politics.

In their second debate, Mitt Romney and Barack Obama each tried to outdo the other’s love of fossil fuels: Obama extolling his record on oil and natural gas production, Romney vowing to take “advantage of the oil and coal we have here.” The Republican candidate has ridiculed the administration’s $535 million loan guarantee to Solyndra, the bankrupt solar panel maker, and accused Obama of living “in an imaginary world where government-subsidized windmills and solar panels could power the economy.”

The candidates’ coolness to renewable energy comes at a time when the domestic supply of traditional energy sources, such as oil and natural gas, is at an all-time high. And yet this failure to make the promise of renewables a keynote in the debate is a huge missed opportunity. In particular, it ignores the dramatic reduction in the cost of photovoltaic solar power worldwide and the considerable benefits to U.S. consumers and the environment.

Political roadblocks

The untold story of this campaign is that what killed Solyndra may turn out to be a boon for the nation. “Economically and technologically, the game is over,” said Bill Powers, a San Diego engineer and board member of Solar Done Right, a group that proselytizes for rooftop solar power. “The hang-ups in the U.S. are strictly political.”

Over the past five years the price of photovoltaic panels has plummeted 75 percent, due largely to a glut of Chinese-made panels. The fall in prices rendered technically advanced photovoltaic panels, like those produced by Solyndra and other U.S. companies, too expensive to compete.

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This concludes my meditation on handicapped devices for the home. It was never meant to be a catalog or even a realistic sampling. After all, this is a blog about energy and the environment. That said, this is a blog that envisions humans being good to the planet and using nonpolluting energy sources not as living in a cave huddle around a fire. It is actually about improving the efficiency and quality of life for everyone including the handicapped. Today’s post is one from my deep past. My grandmother was in a wheelchair for 30 years. Her legs were paralyzed from the waist down. We had a Hoyer lift in our home for that whole time. So this is for you Treva where ever you are.

http://www.1800wheelchair.com/product/5463/hoyer-heavy-duty-lift-with-optional-scale

Description

Hoyer’s Heavy-Duty Power Lift features a power operated base with a clearance of 4.5″. The 6-point cradle design maximizes patient comfort, and the long padded handles offer a plethora of grip choices. This lift also features an extended reach for floor pick-up capabilities. Emergency stop and power manual lowering for added safety. Optional upgrade model features a scale for convenient weighing.

Features

  • Power operated base
  • 6-Point cradle design for maximum patient comfort
  • Long, padded handles offer a plethora of grip choices
  • Extended reach for floor pick-up
  • Emergency stop for added safety
  • Power manual lowering
  • 700 lbs. Weight capacity

Included

  • One Hoyer Heavy-Duty Power Lift with Optional Scale
  • Free Shipping
  • Limited 1 Year Warranty

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Go there and read. More next week.

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