November 2010


This is a first for me. I found this cool house done by Georgia State University’s Physics Department. I do not know if the Interactive part of it will hold because my HTML skills are nonexistent, but if not please go to the site below and play with it.

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http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hbase/thermo/houseenergy.html

Household Energy Use

This is an active graphic. Click on any energy use for details. When the need to conserve energy in your house is considered, then the focus should be mainly on heating and cooling processes. They are the major uses of energy. Hot water heating is also a sizable use of energy, as is the cooking process with surface unit and oven. The use of energy by a refrigerator is significant, and the lighting process for a whole house becomes a significant energy use. Electronic appliances on the whole use a small amount of energy, and are not a major part of energy conservation initiatives.
Comment on energy cost Energy units
Table of insulation R-values
Index

Heat transfer concepts

Heat transfer examples

HyperPhysics***** Thermodynamics R Nave
Go Back

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More tomorrow.

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What Difference A Day Makes. I put up this post yesterday and it centered on on a guys website that was kind of cool. As you know (please read the NO NEW CONTENT section), this website functions as an accumulator site. We firmly believe that there is plenty of new information out there everyday that we don’t need to add to the confusion. We never claim the material as our own. As our great high school English teachers (Ms. Carriker and Mr. Grimm) taught us, we never use more than Fair Use and we always cite the source so people can go there and read more. Everyonce in awhile…this is the 3rd time in 3 years… we run into what we call “internet idiots” that want to get all ballistic on us. They always claim that we are violating their intellectually property rights by copying word for word their most precious thoughts. WELL. What I usually do is put up a way to contact them…point out how dumb it is to give up free publicity, even if it is from a small nonprofit website, and move on. But since this guy borrows most of his stuff anyway and since he has an ego the size of a dump truck…I left up the parts that he borrowed and as for the size of his ego please see:

http://michaelbluejay.com/michael/#top

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U.S. household energy

Electrical usage of household items

The chart above shows how the average home used energy (not just electricity) in 2007. (Dept. of Energy)

Austin Energy,

(City of Tallahassee)

A little farther down is a chart showing the relative use of various appliances.


(DoE)

University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Seattle Light

Cornhusker Public Power District

GeneratorSales.com.

Power Consumption Database,

More Energy Savings.

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More tomorrow.
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I am taking the 4 day weekend off. Have a good one!

I was going to go on a residential energy tear, but then I saw this by another of the Frontmen for everything carbon. I always suggest they suck up on the tailpipe of a car for a couple of minutes to get their priorities straight. Our planet is drowning and they want to lalalalalala all around as the water splish splashes around their feet. AND it is about the housing market…so what the heck.

http://thegwpf.org/uk-news/1912-chris-huhne-in-deep-trouble-as-guardian-turns-against-green-deal.html

Chris Huhne In Trouble As Guardian Turns Against Green Deal

Wednesday, 24 November 2010 13:08 Juliette Jowit, The Guardian

While it slashes budgetsshuts itself off from advice and prioritises economic returns, the supposedly “greenest government ever” is clinging to one of its headline promises: the soon-to-be-unveiled Green Deal. This seemingly simple policy, announced by the Labour government and continued by the coalition, promises to lend the money for an “energy efficiency makeover” to millions of homes in the next decade, to save money on their gas and electric bills and cut greenhouse gas emissions. The energy secretary, Chris Huhne, this month announced the plan would create 100,000 jobs.

Less pollution, lower bills, more jobs: who could argue with that? Except that bills probably won’t be lower. And when customers realise that, will they want to pay for the work that would lower pollution and create the jobs? Perhaps even more damaging, then, is the risk of a public backlash when energy users realise they are paying hundreds of pounds each for a plethora of “government” initiatives to improve energy security and cut global warming emissions.

The problem with the economics of the Green Deal is two-fold. In advance of a government bill before Christmas, the Department of Energy and Climate Change (Decc) will only confirm that up to 14m homes could be treated by 2020, and customers will have 20-25 years to repay the costs, though it is hoped many will do so much sooner. It is also expected that spending per household will be capped at about £6,500, and energy and retail companies asked to deliver the programme are said to be modelling interest rates of 6-8% to cover their borrowing of the capital plus the risk of non-payment.

Meanwhile, a recently published Decc leaflet suggests what different measures will cost and save. According to this, customers with cavity walls (usually in homes built from 1930) could spend just £500 getting their walls and loft insulated, and expect to save £160 a year – recouping what the work cost in less than four years, or a little longer accounting for the loan interest.

However, a mid-range quote for insulating solid walls (internally) and the loft would be £6,250, and the predicted saving £425 a year. Taking a middling interest rate (see above) of 7%, a customer borrowing £6,250 would pay back approximately £875 a year over 10 years, or £530 over 25 years.

What immediately stands out in this example is that the repayments are higher than the government’s estimated saving – implying those customers’ bills would not fall. Decc also assumes a relatively low 15% “rebound effect” – when customers chose to use some of the saved money for extra heating, cooling or more appliances – despite acknowledging by email that it is in reality 15-40%, and a separate estimate by the EU environment directorate of 20-80%.

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See they don’t talk about how much coal costs really. I mean if you factor in the costs of the damage done to all of us, and the subsidies all energy companies get…coal is very expensive. More tomorrow. More turkey that is.

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You won’t believe this, what with Google’s image as Mr. Clean and Green. BUT when you type in the simple phrase “household energy usage” into their search engine, the first hit you get is Energy Citizen. This is the astroturf  nonprofit front group sponsored by the Koch Brothers, Don Blankenship and Peabody Coal that wants the Federal Government out of the mining business. They want safety laws repealed and they detest global warming and Cap and Trade policies. Massey Energy is up for sale by the way so Blankenship may not be able to play with the big boys much longer…Ahhh poor baby.

http://energycitizens.org/jobs-red/default.aspx?utm_campaign=Q4_2010&utm_source=EyeTraffic&utm_medium=SEM&utm_content=ENERGY&utm_term=Domestic-Energy&gclid=CIWdkNbLt6UCFcms7QodoA00Gw

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Not only that but they land you write on the “To Join” page without even a chance to be repelled. How repelling is that?

Help Keep Our Recovery Going … Join Energy Citizens.

Businesses can thrive and create new jobs when energy is affordable and available. But when lawmakers hinder energy development, we all lose.

We need YOU to help Washington hear our message: American families and communities need sensible energy policies that power our economy and create jobs. Become part of our movement today — join Energy Citizens and let Congress hear your concerns about American energy and American jobs.

We need solutions that increase access to all reliable domestic energy: wind, solar, nuclear, and  yes  oil and natural gas. Our nation has ample energy reserves that can contribute to our economy for decades to come.

The tragedy in the Gulf of Mexico underscores the risks involved in energy development — and the need for improved safety. But this tragedy should not make us forget that our economy and way of life depend on affordable energy. We must not allow opponents to use the tragedy to stop domestic oil and natural gas development. Even with increased conservation, our nation’s energy needs are growing.

You can make a difference by joining our citizens’ movement for sensible energy policies. Help us win a national energy plan that creates jobs, promotes economic growth, and increases our security. Please join us TODAY  and tell Congress where you stand

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Instead of here, where at least you can reject the party line if you want to.

http://energycitizens.org/ec/advocacy/default.aspx

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Google should be ashamed of themselves. More tomorrow.

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It doesn’t matter what country you are in.

http://www.independent.co.uk/opinion/leading-articles/leading-article-this-is-no-time-to-tread-softly-around-the-energy-companies-2132865.html

Leading article: This is no time to tread softly around the energy companies

Saturday, 13 November 2010

The great energy rip-off continues. The wholesale price of gas has risen in recent months so the large household energy suppliers are raising their consumer prices.

British Gas has become the latest to do so, announcing a 7 per cent increase yesterday. This comes after a similar price hike by Scottish & Southern Energy last month. And the rest of the “big six” UK energy suppliers are expected to follow soon.

The problem is that the energy sector is only selectively responsive to fluctuations in market prices. Wholesale energy prices are 50 per cent below their peak in 2008, yet consumer bills have fallen by just 10 per cent in that time. It is a familiar story: consumer prices are sticky on the way down, but well lubricated on the way up.

But the fact that we are used to these gouging tactics by energy firms does not make them any more acceptable. This represents a market failure. Competition should hold down consumer prices. But the number of household power suppliers has fallen from 20 to six since privatisation in the 1990s. A competent regulator would not have allowed this situation to develop. But Ofgem, which supposedly oversees the industry, has repeatedly shown itself to be unwilling to bring the energy giants into line. The result is an energy sector that is uncomfortably similar to a cartel.

And the Coalition has, so far, been no more willing than the previous administration to address this problem. The Energy Secretary, Chris Huhne, has warned firms to give customers ample warning of price rises. But he has not indicated a desire to force structural reform. And the Coalition’s decision to abolish the Consumer Focus watchdog, transferring its function to the Citizens Advice Bureau, will only make it more difficult for consumers to resist the excesses of the energy giants.

The suspicion is that ministers are treading softly around these firms because they are relying on them to invest some £200bn in low-carbon energy infrastructure over the next decade. Yet a failure to tackle the vested interests of the energy sector would represent a strategic mistake by the Government. Consumer energy prices will inevitably need to rise over the medium term as firms make investments, under Government pressure, to decarbonise our energy supplies. Massive investment in wind, wave and nuclear power is necessary if Britain is to meet its target of generating 20 per cent of our energy from renewable by 2020.

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More tomorrow.

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OK. So I can see leaving a few on but one of the biggest office buildings for the State of Illinois in Springfield is the Stratton Building and it can NOT turn its lights off at night.

That is right night after night after night. But then the rest of the world looks like this:

http://www.environmentalgraffiti.com/news-city-lights-space

hentziapalarum.jpgWritten by Michele Collet

The Greatest Cities on Earth Shining into Space

Nile River Delta at Night

Photo: NASA

Not only stars light up the sky at night; these incredible photographs taken from the space stations show earth in a whole new light.

The Nile Delta is illuminated above and shows the incredible distribution of the population. NASA describes it as a flower, with Cairo being a particularly bright spot at the base. Almost all of the people live along the life-giving river, while Tel Aviv, Israel is another bright spot, as is Amman in Jordan.

City Lights at Night along the France-Italy Border

Photo: NASA

A stunning image of the city lights along the border of France and Italy. With the alps separating the two countries, you can clearly make out the centers of Lyon, Marseilles and Torino. The island of Corsica is just behind the brightly lit moon.

Indiana/Kentucky/Ohio city lights seen be STS-62

Photo: NASA

This image was taken by space shuttle Columbia and shows Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana. The three bright lights in the center are Springfield, Daytona and Cincinnati, with Indianapolis in the lower left. Lake Erie, Cleveland and Akron are in the upper left, and Lexington is at the center right edge. The white light at the top is a phenomenon called “airglow”

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What is up with these major news sources. Both the Christian Science Monitor and the Atlantic ditch alternative energies and go for coal or something more esoteric. They make it sound like alternative energies will be a failure.

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Dirty Coal, Clean Future

To environmentalists, “clean coal” is an insulting oxymoron. But for now, the only way to meet the world’s energy needs, and to arrest climate change before it produces irreversible cataclysm, is to use coal—dirty, sooty, toxic coal—in more-sustainable ways. The good news is that new technologies are making this possible. China is now the leader in this area, the Google and Intel of the energy world. If we are serious about global warming, America needs to work with China to build a greener future on a foundation of coal. Otherwise, the clean-energy revolution will leave us behind, with grave costs for the world’s climate and our economy.

By James Fallows

Image credit: Bryan Christie

Through the past four years I’ve often suggested that China’s vaunted achievements are less impressive, or at least more complicated, seen up close. Yes, Chinese factories make nearly all of the world’s consumer electronic equipment. But the brand names, designs, and most of the profits usually belong to companies and people outside China. Yes, China’s accumulated trade surpluses have made it the creditor for America and much of the world. But the huge share of its own wealth that China has sunk into foreign economies ties its fate to theirs. Yes, more and more Chinese people are very rich. But hundreds of millions of Chinese people are still very poor. Yes, Chinese factories lead the world in output of windmills and solar-power panels. But China’s environmental situation is still so dire as to pose the main threat not just to the country’s public health and political stability but also to its own economic expansion.

This report will have a different tone. I have been learning about an area of Chinese achievement that is objectively good for the world as a whole, including the United States. Surprising enough! And China’s achievement dramatically highlights a structural advantage of its approach and a weakness of America’s. It involves the shared global effort to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions, of which China and the United States are respectively the No. 1 and No. 2 producers, together creating more than 40 percent of the world’s total output. That shared effort is real, and important. The significant Chinese developments involve more than the “clean tech” boom that Americans have already heard so much about. Instead a different, less publicized, and much less appealing-sounding effort may matter even more in determining whether the United States and China can cooperate to reduce emissions. This involves not clean tech but the dirtiest of today’s main energy sources—coal.

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I know. Kinda leaves you hanging doesn’t it. Go there and read more.

More tomorrow.

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First up the Christian Science Monitor.

http://www.csmonitor.com/Environment/2010/1108/New-energy-climate-change-and-sustainability-shape-a-new-era

New energy: climate change and sustainability shape a new era

A new energy revolution – similar to shifts from wood to coal to oil – is inevitable as climate change and oil scarcity drive a global search for sustainability in power production. But even the promise of renewable energy holds drawbacks.

New energy: climate change and sustainability will shape a new era in which renewable sources such as solar power will ultimately replace oil. A solarplant near Seville, Spain uses mirrors to concentrate the sun’s rays onto towers where they produce steam to drive a turbine, producing electricity.

Marcelo del Poso/Reuters

“Tonight I want to have an unpleasant talk with you,” a somber President Jimmy Carter said gravely into a television camera on an April night in 1977.


This article is part of the cover story project on the future of energy in the Nov. 8 issue of The Christian Science Monitor weekly magazine. Subscribe here: http://tiny.cc/4zeuu

Gareth Fuller/AP

Related Stories

A series of oil embargoes and OPEC price hikes had hit the nation hard. Gasoline prices had tripled. Auto-dependent Americans had sometimes waited hours in line to buy the gasoline needed to get to work. The president, in an iconic fireside chat – in a beige cardigan – two months earlier had congenially urged Americans to turn thermostats down to 65 degrees F. by day, 55 by night.

But on this night, he ratcheted up his tone: Warning of an imminent “national catastrophe” and scolding Americans for selfish wastefulness, the president declared it time for Americans to curb consumption of oil, which he said had doubled in the 1950s and again in the ’60s – time to end their dependence on imports.

“This difficult effort will be the moral equivalent of war,” he said.

Mr. Carter created the Department of Energy. He called for energy conservation and increased production of coal and solar power. He installed solar panels on the White House.

ALTERNATIVE ENERGY QUIZ: Are you “smarter than Al Gore”?

But his vision – to push America and the world into a new energy era as significant as the shift from wood to coal that fueled the Industrial Revolution – never materialized.

Gasoline prices plummeted in the 1980s, removing the incentive to end oil imports. Driving returned to precrisis levels. Carter’s successor, Ronald Reagan, withdrew funding for renewable energies. And the White House solar panels were torn down.

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More tomorrow.

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No one and I repeat NO ONE should be throwing out food. Everyone can compost. If you can’t use the resulting dirt (everyone should have house plants if they value their health) then you can just throw it outside. It doesn’t matter if you live in an apartment in a urban center or a house in the country, the message is stop throwing food in the garbage. The problem starts at the store though. Please stop overbuying food…especially meat.

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http://articles.latimes.com/2010/nov/07/opinion/la-oe-bloom-food-waste-20101107

Help the planet: Stop wasting food

Producing it and then getting rid of leftovers require a lot of fossil fuel. Just taking a few simple steps can ease the problem.

Op-Ed

November 07, 2010|By Jonathan Bloom

Let me guess: You’re concerned about the environment. You recycle, buy the right light bulbs, drink from a reusable water bottle (preferably one made of metal) and wish you could afford a hybrid. You try to remember your reusable shopping bags when you go to the market and feel guilty when you don’t.

But there’s something you could be doing that would make a much bigger difference, and it’s not one of those really hard things like carpooling to work or installing solar panels on your roof.

All you need to do is minimize your food waste. If you buy it and bring it home, eat it. That alone is one of the easiest ways to aid the environment.

About 40% of the food produced in the United States isn’t consumed. Every day Americans waste enough food to fill the Rose Bowl. And our national food waste habit is on the upswing: We waste 50% more food today than we did in 1974.

Squandering so much of what we grow doesn’t just waste food; it also wastes the fossil fuel that went into growing, processing, transporting and refrigerating it. A recent study estimated conservatively that 2% of all U.S. energy consumption went to producing food that was never eaten. To give you a sense of perspective, every year, through uneaten food, we waste 70 times the amount of oil that gushed into the Gulf of Mexico during the three months of the Deepwater Horizon spill.

That waste of resources continues after we throw away food. There is the energy required to haul the discarded food to the landfill. And once there, food decomposes and creates methane, a greenhouse gas 23 times more potent a heat trapper than carbon dioxide. Landfills are the second-largest human-related source of methane emissions, and rotting food causes the majority of methane there. It’s climate change coming directly from your kitchen.

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America should be ashamed. More tomorrow.

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