Currently Browsing: Energy

UPDATE: Year One with Rooftop Solar

Our rooftop photovoltaic solar array went live at the beginning of March, 2015 and since it has been a year, I thought it would be a good time to give my readers an update as I have been keeping monthly tabs on the performance of the system. So here is a quick chart demonstrating the performance of the system: Date is the month-year of the bill from our utility Ave Fº is the average temperature for the billing period ADC is the average daily cost of electricity from the utility from APS is the total electricity in kWh received from the utility to APS is the total electricity in kWh credited by the...
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Good Day, Sunshine | our decision on rooftop solar

Now that my wife and I have made the decision to remodel our home to address, among other things, energy efficiency, it is time to look at from what sources our energy comes. Our local utility sources power primarily from coal, nuclear, natural gas, and has made substantial investments in sustainable energy as well (one biomass, one biogas, two concentrating solar, one geothermal, nine photovoltaic solar, three wind farms, and up to 3,000 distributed energy locations). While their effort to build and purchase power from sustainable energy plants is commendable, we really want all of our energy to come...
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UPDATE: Home Performance with ENERGY STAR

I posted “Home Performance with ENERGY STAR” in August of 2011. For a variety of reasons, mostly financial, we did not immediately solve the various issues that were revealed by the audit. However, in early June of this year, we broke ground on a remodel that will address nearly all of these issues. We stripped the kitchen and all the living areas (except living quarters) down to bare floors, walls and roof. We are upgrading our roof insulation to an ENERGY STAR rated R30; we are replacing all ceiling fixtures with sealed LED units; and we are upgrading our refrigerator and HVAC units to ENERGY STAR...
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Charged Up

In the summer of 1998, I was traveling home from a visit to my mother in New York. In those days, I traveled quite a bit for business and had reached a high status on America West Airways assuring me a first-class seat on most flights. On this particular flight, I found myself sitting next to Bill Post, the CEO of our local electric utility, Arizona Public Service. It was a fortuitous meeting. In our conversation near the end of our flight, we started talking about electric cars—about whether there would be a near future where the internal combustion engine (ICE) would become a thing of the past. Bill...
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ENERGY STAR®-rated light bulbs | A Bright Future

Incandescent light bulbs are extraordinarily inefficient. Of the energy they consume, just 10% emits as visible light and a whopping 90% emits as waste heat. According to ENERGY STAR®, if every household in the United States changed one incandescent light bulb for an ENERGY STAR rated bulb, the annual energy cost savings would approach $600 million and greenhouse gas emissions would drop by 9 billion pounds. This would be like taking 800,000 cars off the road. ENERGY STAR-rated light bulbs save energy by using 75% less energy and by emitting 75% less heat, thus reducing home cooling costs. These bulbs...
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