I Always Come Home To The Residential Market – It’s because that is where we live

I know I write about all kinds of things like: the Russian Invasion of Ukraine or environmental disasters. But where this Blog started out was in the residential market. You know all the boring stuff. Improved air conditioning, or painting your roof white or insulating your water heater. Then I veer off in to “bugs that eat plastics” or Wind Turbines when I should be talking about energy efficient appliances. So without further ado here are 15 ways to use energy more better in your home.

Top 15 Home Energy Efficiency Upgrades and Their Costs in 2021

Top 15 Home Energy Efficiency Upgrades and Their Costs in 2021

Energy efficiency is not just a trend that people with money follow because it’s cool to be green. No. It’s a real way to reduce your carbon footprint and your monthly costs in the long run.

It’s true that big changes like switching to solar energy require significant investments but you will recover and even save money in the upcoming years.

Enough talking, let’s see exactly what can be done to make your house more energy efficient. It’s recommended to start with little things and work your way up to the most expensive changes.

Maximize the use of natural light

The first thing to do to lower your energy bill is let the light in (obviously). For that purpose, install large windows.

Avoid light blocking treatments and use instead shades that can be opened at will. This way, you get darkness and light whenever you want. Place mirrors on the walls adjacent or opposite to windows. The idea is to have many reflective surfaces that create the illusion of light and spaciousness.

Install energy efficient windows

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Go there and read all 15. More next week.

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Bugs That Eat Plastic – Could it be as simple as that

Let me say 3 things right off the bat. 1. This is a really really long article. 2. They only spend, like a paragraph on Ideonella sakaiensis. 3. They argue that enzyme recycling is feasible and I am not sure of that. About that single paragraph however, why don’t they let the little creatures eat the plastic and then do something with them? Is that too hard to grasp. I mean maybe they make good fertilizer? Anyway right now plastic is getting into everything including our bodies, so they better find something to do with it fast. Feeding it too microscopic organisms sound good to me.

Are Microbes the Future of Recycling? It’s Complicated.

Are Microbes the Future of Recycling? It’s Complicated.

Since the first factories began manufacturing polyester from petroleum in the 1950s, humans have produced an estimated 9.1 billion tons of plastic. Of the waste generated from that plastic, less than a tenth of that has been recycled, researchers estimate. About 12 percent has been incinerated, releasing dioxins and other carcinogens into the air. Most of the rest, a mass equivalent to about 35 million blue whales, has accumulated in landfills and in the natural environment. Plastic inhabits the oceans, building up in the guts of seagulls and great white sharks. It rains down, in tiny flecks, on cities and national parks. According to some research, from production to disposal, it is responsible for more greenhouse gas emissions than the aviation industry.

This pollution problem is made worse, experts say, by the fact that even the small share of plastic that does get recycled is destined to end up, sooner or later, in the trash heap. Conventional, thermomechanical recycling — in which old containers are ground into flakes, washed, melted down, and then reformed into new products — inevitably yields products that are more brittle, and less durable, than the starting material. At best, material from a plastic bottle might be recycled this way about three times before it becomes unusable. More likely, it will be “downcycled” into lower value materials like clothing and carpeting—materials that will eventually be disposed of in landfills.

“Thermomechanical recycling is not recycling,” said Alain Marty, chief science officer at Carbios, a French company that is developing alternatives to conventional recycling.

“At the end,” he added, “you have exactly the same quantity of plastic waste.”

Carbios is among a contingent of startups that are attempting to commercialize a type of chemical recycling known as depolymerization, which breaks down polymers — the chain-like molecules that make up a plastic — into their fundamental molecular building blocks, called monomers. Those monomers can then be reassembled into polymers that are, in terms of their physical properties, as good as new. In theory, proponents say, a single plastic bottle could be recycled this way until the end of time.

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Go there and read alot. More next week

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Springfield Announces Earth Awareness Fair – I have mixed feelings

I have always thought that the City of Springfield should pony up and call the event Earth Day. Further more, I think they should have it ON Earth Day. But as I have gotten older and some would say, “more reasonable”, I have come the conclusion that the sympathies behind it are good. Having it on the weekend is also a lot more family friendly. Still the Zoo is not centrally located and I doubt seriously if Mass Transit will overcome that. Here is what I know.

City of Springfield 2022 Earth Awareness Fair
Yahoo/Inbox
Rivas, Adena R. <adena.rivas@springfield.il.us>
To:Rivas, Adena R.
Thu, Feb 10 at 1:28 PM

Good Afternoon,

I am sorry for the delay in getting this information to you. I had an unexpected delivery- two baby girls on New Year’s Eve. While I will be out until early March, I wanted to let you know that we will be having a physical Earth Awareness Fair this year. Due to Covid-19 and reasons concerning social distancing and crowd control, the Park District has agreed to host the Fair again this year. We have also partnered with SMTD to provide shuttle service for event attendees throughout the day. Both of which is very exciting! The Fair will be held on Saturday, April 23 from 11 am – 4 pm.

While we would prefer all participants to take part face-to-face, we will have the online portion available again this year for those interested.

The online platform will only be used for PDF’s, web links, videos, etc. We will have all information consolidated on the City’s Earth Awareness Fair webpage www.springfield.il.us/earthfair or www.springfield.il.us/EAF

All online information must be submitted no later than Friday, April 8.

On the attached registration form, which is due no later than Friday, April 1– earlier submissions are always acceptable, please make sure to check the box specific to how your organization and/or business would like to participate.

Any questions please let me know.

Thank you in advance for your support this year.

Adena Rivas

Programs Coordinator

217.789.2255, ext. 5244

Adena.Rivas@Springfield.IL.US

City of Springfield,IL Public Works

Municipal Center West

300 S. 7th St., Springfield, IL  62701

www.springfield.il.us

Recycling is a good thing. Please recycle any printed emails.

 

THE ABOVE MESSAGE, INCLUDING ANY ATTACHMENTS, IS INTENDED ONLY FOR THE USE OF THE ADDRESSEE AND MAY CONTAIN INFORMATION THAT IS PRIVILEGED, CONFIDENTIAL AND PROHIBITED FROM DISCLOSURE UNDER APPLICABLE LAW. YOU ARE HEREBY NOTIFIED THAT ANY DISSEMINATION, DISTRIBUTION, OR COPYING OF THIS COMMUNICATION IS STRICTLY PROHIBITED. IF YOU RECEIVE THIS E-MAIL IN ERROR, RETURN TO THE E-MAIL ADDRESS LISTED ABOVE.

https://www.springfield.il.us/Departments/PublicWorks/EarthAwarenessFair.aspx

City of Springfield partners with the Springfield Park District to host this year’s Earth Awareness Fair at the Henson Robinson Zoo located at 1100 E. Lake Shore Dr.

Event will be held on Saturday, April 17 from 11 am – 4 pm.

Pre-registration and tickets are required for entry. Entry will be limited to 50 attendees every hour. Contact the Henson Robinson Zoo for event tickets by going to their website www.springfieldparks.org or by calling 217.585.1821

  • For those uncomfortable or unable to come to the Fair, we have an online platform that offers a wide variety of information in downloadable and online viewing format.
  • Please click on corresponding links below.

Earth Awareness Fair Facebook Page

Check out past year events and pictures as well as stay current on all the latest event news by going to our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/EAFSpringfield.

COVID-19 Guidelines

Public health guidelines related to COVID-19 will be strictly enforced.

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Go There or be square. More next week.

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Home Solar Power Is Cheap And Effective – Go for it now

First off. This piece claims to be all you need to know about Home Solar Electric. It is not. But when you do all the things they TELL you to and THEN put them together. Then you are nearly there. BUT they do not include all the research you have to do on equipment manufacturers, convertors and batteries. Sigh. But they get A’s for optimism.

https://getpocket.com/explore/item/what-you-need-to-know-about-converting-your-home-to-solar?utm_source=pocket-newtab

What You Need to Know About Converting Your Home to Solar

Let us be your guiding light.

Popular Science

  • Whitson Gordon

 

If you live in an area with abundant sunlight—hello, fellow southern Californians—you’ve probably thought about installing solar panels on your roof to save on your electric bill. But with so much information, it can be hard to know where to start.

Look no further—start here

Between the different types of panels, financing, inverters, and other jargon, researching solar energy can feel overwhelming at first. That’s why I recommend starting at a solar quote comparison site like EnergySage, Solar-Estimate, or SolarReviews (the latter two are run by the same people).

Both EnergySage and Solar-Estimate act as educational resources and comparison shopping tools to help you field bids. I’ve been using EnergySage, which is chock-full of articles explaining the technology involved. You can also watch videos, look at their buyer’s guide, or start getting quotes. Their Solar 101 series of articles will help you understand the basics, and when you’re done, scroll through the site’s “Learn About Solar” sidebar to read even more articles that’ll give you a feel for the process.

To understand what your home requires, though, you’ll need to look up how much electricity you use. If your bill tells you the average amount of electricity you use each month, make a note of that, or calculate a quick and dirty average yourself. The more information you have on your usage, the more accurate an estimate you can get from installers.

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Go there and read so much. More next week.

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Advice On Saving Energy At Home – Not from me mind you, someone who creates content for CIELOWiggle

I know it has been awhile since I did a residential post. I know this started out as a blog about residential energy needs and services. You know, energy efficient roofs, HVAC equipment and other such stuff. But years ago, I got off on energy related environmental stuff and then eventually Global Warming. Then anti-Nuclear stuff. Finally just raw Environmental stuff like obnoxious polluting and horrible deaths. Well today a gentleman named Chris Winters reached out and touched me so I am touching him back, so to speak. As always, I can vouch for his tips because they are somewhat general, but anything specific he is pitching I can not (For instance AC controllers – which his company sells). Also I may have put up this as an addenda to any earlier piece, so if i did forgive me.

21 Energy Saving Tips for Year-Round Energy Efficiency in 2021

No matter what the season, energy usage tends to increase one way or another. With long running air conditioning and increased wash cycles of sweaty laundry in summer, to high heating usage and wash cycles of bulkier laundry in winter, we simply cannot operate without electricity.

We can be extremely energy efficient and follow energy saving tips and tricks to ingrain some environmentally friendly habits.

Following energy saving tips is essential to lower your costs, but it is also important to decrease your ecological footprint.

With millennials and Gen Z nicknamed “generation green”, there is a strong focus on energy saving, and rightly so. However, global warming is rising more rapidly than ever, and the term ‘climate emergency’ is being used rather than climate change to highlight the situation’s intensity.

All industries such as HVAC are revolutionizing their technology to act on climate change. Since home appliances and devices are a major contributor to our energy consumption, utilizing smart devices such as smart thermostats or smart controllers for air conditioners can make a huge difference on your bills!

Let’s get right to it. Here are 21 energy saving tips that can easily help you decrease your energy consumption:

1. Use Energy Efficient Appliances

Energy efficient appliances are specially designed to consume minimum energy to complete the same tasks that you’d perform with normal appliances.  In addition, some

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Good there and read. More next week.

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Tankless Water Heaters Are Grand – This piece goes to great lengths to prove it

First off, spell check does not like the word tankless. You would think by now that the people at WORD Press would have gotten over that spelling by now. Second off (to be consistent) this is not and article that CES can defend or debate. It is an article generated by another site so “Buyer Beware”. The articles has a lot of extraneous Ads and unnecessary clutter. Please feel free to ignore all of that. I have read the article and for the most part it is factual, and more extensive then most. So with out further ado:

https://happydiyhome.com/tankless-water-heater-cost/

Tankless Water Heater Cost & Pros and Cons – Are They Worth It?

Water heaters are extremely important to your plumbing system, and this goes for both residential buildings and commercial spaces. Many people are turning to newer options, and this can lead you to wonder what a tankless water heater costs because this style of water heater will only heat up the water you use. Traditionally, water heaters heated and stored water on a continuous basis, and this can be expensive if you use a lot of water. As long as they get installed and connected correctly, it’s easy to control your tankless water heater cost for years at a time.

You get the choice of a single point unit or whole house units. A single point unit is slightly more inexpensive to buy and install because you put them right next to a water source. Whole house units cost more to install, but they are powerful enough to heat all of the water in your home at one time. The tankless water heater cost has a slightly wider price range due to a variety of the factors, and it starts at $2,000 and goes up to around $4,500 from start to finish.

The average cost is right around $2,800 for a whole house gas unit. The tankless water heater cost has fluctuating labor rates too. The flow rate, brand, and type will also influence your tankless water heater cost, and this is why you want to get a few estimates before you settle on one company to perform the installation. This can help ensure that you get a fair price with professional-quality results.

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Go there and read this very long article. But if you just want to know the pros and cons go to the end. More next week.

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Some Things Billed As Environmental Aren’t – In this case TESLA

I repeat this only once. Elon Musk is a genius. His Electric Cars are also amazing and GENERALLY good for the environment, especially if charged by Solar and Wind Power. But they need some fire suppression ability because 4 hours and 30,000 gallons of water is like a major house fire. That’s is when these type of wrecks are uncommon. What happens when they are everywhere?

Then there is the whole disabling the auto pilot function. I mean Morons aren’t good for the environment either.

https://slate.com/technology/2021/04/tesla-crash-texas-drivers-seat-fire-autopilot.html?via=rss

The Industry

The Most Disturbing Part of the Latest Tesla Crash

Two men died near Houston, Texas, on Saturday while riding in a 2019 Tesla Model S that, according to local authorities, was speeding into a turn and ended up going off the road and crashing into a tree. It took first responders four hours and more than 30,000 gallons of water to put out the resulting fire, which kept reigniting; when damaged, the lithium ion batteries in electric cars can cause fires that are very difficult to extinguish because of how they store energy. Authorities reportedly attempted to ask Tesla for advice on how to put out the fire, but it’s unclear whether they ended up getting any help.

Besides the fire, there was something especially disturbing about the crash: No one was in the driver’s seat. One of the men was in the passenger seat and the other in the rear. There has been no official confirmation that they had engaged the car’s “autopilot” feature—something that is beloved by many Tesla owners and that critics of the company say is marketed in unsafe ways—though their wives reportedly told authorities that they had been discussing the feature before leaving for their drive.

Unlike the systems that companies like Google and Uber have been developing and testing for years, Tesla’s autopilot is not completely autonomous, though it does allow the cars to accelerate, steer, and brake by themselves. The company warns drivers that they need to be behind the wheel and paying attention in case the system makes a mistake and they have to intervene. There have nevertheless been a number of serious accidents in which the autopilot feature appeared to be involved. For instance, a man died in 2018 while using the autopilot in California; data from his phone indicates that a video game had been active on the device. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration also confirmed to the New York Times in March that it is currently investigating the potential role of Tesla’s autopilot feature in 23 crashes.

 

 

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Tomorrow * NO Cars – What then

If Schumer could pull this off I would be “dancin in the streets”. It would not be as good and banning Airline Flights, but heh I will take whatever I can get. It would be really good for the lower level atmosphere and especially good for bodies of water, whether flowing bodies like rivers or standing bodies like lakes or oceans. Unfortunately, the upper atmosphere is where the real global warming is taking place. Still – I am not minimizing this. IT be good.

https://www.theverge.com/2021/3/17/22334634/schumer-electric-vehicle-swap-discount-infrastructure-interview

Chuck Schumer wants to replace every gas car in America with an electric vehicle

The Senate majority leader is reviving his plan to give people discounts for swapping their gas car for an electric one

With the $1.9 trillion COVID relief bill signed into law, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) is ready to tackle the next major challenge: President Joe Biden’s call for a massive infrastructure bill. As part of that package, Schumer said he plans to include his ambitious proposal to get every American to swap their gas-guzzling car for an electric one.

“It’s a bold new plan designed to accelerate America’s transition to all electric vehicles on the road, to developing a charging infrastructure, and to grow American jobs through clean manufacturing,” Schumer told The Verge in a brief interview this week. “And the ultimate goal is to have every car manufactured in America be electric by 2030, and every car on the road be clean by 2040.”

The top-line details of the “cash for clunkers’’-style plan haven’t changed much since Schumer first proposed it in an op-ed in The New York Times in late 2019. But the political landscape has certainly shifted in favor of the Democrats, breathing new life into the idea. Under the proposal, anyone who trades in their gas car for an electric one would get a “substantial” point-of-sale discount, Schumer says. He wouldn’t say how much of a discount, only that it would be “deep.” A spokesperson later confirmed they are eyeing rebates that are “more generous” than the current $7,500 federal EV tax credit.

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Go there and read. More next week.

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Woman Makes Recycled Plastic Bricks – It solves a huge problem

The creation of construction materials like concrete and steel are maybe a third of all green house gases. This approach may cut down on that greenhouse gas production and recycle plastics at the same time. It could cut the cost of such materials in developing economies. This is a smile/smile development.  I like that phrase better than win/win.

Kenyan Woman Recycles Plastic into Bricks that are Stronger than Concrete!

By Eliza Erskine

Nzambi Matee is turning recycled plastic into bricks that are stronger than concrete! According to Reuters, Matee’s bricks can be thrown against a wall and do not crack.

Matee is the founder of Gjenge Makers, in Nairobi. “Our product is almost five to seven times stronger than concrete. There is that waste they cannot process anymore; they cannot recycle. That is what we get,” she told the outlet, showing off loads of plastic waste that can’t be recycled.

She produces 1,500 bricks every day, using a mix of different plastics. She gets packaging from factories for free but pays for plastic from recyclers. To make the brick, Matee heats sand, plastic and compresses them into different bricks, which are sold for construction purposes.

Matee is a materials engineer and has been at work on this business since 2017. Her factory has recycled 20 tonnes of plastic waste since she founded the company. She is planning to add a larger production line and plans to break even by year-end. Her factory was set up to help solve plastic pollution, after waiting for the government to take act

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Go there and read. More next week

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Little House Off The Grid – What could be better than that

I rarely ever do videos. I am a Print man. But this is a great “How To” video. They have a composting toilet and solar panels so they got the TOP and the BOTTOM covered hahahaha. The sleeping loft is amazing. I would prefer a king bed but i sure you could get it in if it was part of the early design. They do live outside alot but there is nothing wrong with that. That would not work in an Illinois winter.

https://digg.com/video/this-ultramodern-off-the-grid-tiny-house-will-blow-your-mind

It is a 150,000 dollar house with 20,000 dollars worth of solar but it is off the grid. So it is worth every penny. Infrastructure for a lifetime is not cheap.

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Go there an watch for 18 minutes. More next week

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