Archive for May, 2009

CREE LED light spot – a beautiful LED light bulb

Every business and individual can play their part in the fight against climate change. A significant amount of electricity can be saved by utilising LED Lights in place of your existing lighting technology, LED Lights may require a more substantial investment initially, but with many years of maintenance free operation and low electricity usage, pay back can usually be achieved within 2 years.

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Energy Efficient Light Bulb Comparison

Every business and individual can play their part in the fight against climate change. A significant amount of electricity can be saved by utilising LED Lights in place of your existing lighting technology, LED Lights may require a more substantial investment initially, but with many years of maintenance free operation and low electricity usage pay back can usually be achieved within 2 years.

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Carbon Advice Group – News Articles

Hoteliers must make efforts to reduce their carbon emissions, according to a commentator. TUI Travel has announced it is to increase the amount of sustainability audits it carries out on hotels included in package holiday deals. Business owners who realise the impact they are having on the environment and make changes will protect the future of their local area, according to sustainable development manager at the firm Sarah Holloway. She commented that doing this will not just save money; it could also increase the `attractiveness` of destinations.`The challenge is for all hotels around the world to become aware of their impacts on the environment, their employees and the local community – and take the actions that are most relevant to them,` Ms Holloway said.There are a number of ways these types of businesses can reduce their consumption, she added. Implementing recycling systems, using water-saving devices on taps and showers and installing low-energy lighting are among these.Her comments follow a report by Cornell University – titled Sustainable Hospitality: Sustainable Development in the Hotel Industry – which was published last year. It outlined a pledge by Hilton Hotels to reduce its CO2 emissions by 20 per cent.

Every business and individual can play their part in the fight against climate change. A significant amount of electricity can be saved by utilising LED Lights in place of existing lighting technology, LED Lights may require a more substantial investment initially, but with many years of maintenance free operation and low electricity usage, pay back can usually be achieved within 2 years.

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LED Traffic Lights Will Save City Millions

The benefits to be gained by replacing traditional lighting with LED Lights are immense, as demonstrated in this video. LED Lighting is now are available for homes and work places, too.

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Duke Energy to Build up to 400 ‘Mini’ Solar Power Plants in North Carolina

CHARLOTTE, N.C. –

Duke Energy will build between 100 and 400 electricity-generating mini solar power plants throughout North Carolina over the next two years in one of the first large-scale initiatives of its kind in the U.S., CEO Jim Rogers said today.

“Solar and wind are both going to be key parts of our strategy going forward,” Rogers told reporters following the company’s annual meeting.

The North Carolina Utilities Commission on Wednesday issued a decision allowing Duke Energy to proceed with its $50-million proposal to install solar panels on the roofs and grounds of homes, schools, office buildings, shopping malls, warehouses and industrial plants, starting later this year.

Collectively, the solar sites will generate enough electricity to power 1,300 homes.

The electricity will flow directly from the solar sites to the electrical grid that serves all customers.

Duke Energy’s solar initiative will be among the nation’s first and largest demonstrations of distributed generation, in which electricity is produced at numerous micro generating sites rather than at a large, centralized, traditional power plant.

“We are redefining our boundaries. We’re looking ahead and we’re looking around the corner,” Rogers told shareholders attending the meeting. “We believe the future is a low-carbon world. The 21st century mission of our company is to decarbonize our energy supply and provide universal access to energy efficiency.”

Duke Energy will own and maintain the solar panels during their expected 25-year lifespan. The company also will own the electricity generated.

It will pay a rental fee to property owners who host the panels for use of their roofs or land, based on the size of the installation and amount of electricity generated at any given site.

The solar plan is one of several renewable and clean-energy initiatives announced by Duke Energy in the past 12 months, including:

Solar

• The purchase of the entire electricity output (16 megawatts) from what will be one of the nation’s largest photovoltaic solar farms, to be built in 2009-2010 in Davidson County, N.C.

Wind

• The opening of three new electricity-generating wind farms in Texas and Wyoming.

• A plan to build two more wind farms in Wyoming in 2009.

• The potential development of 5,000 additional megawatts of wind energy in 14 states over the next several years.

• An agreement with Wal-Mart to supply wind-generated electricity to up to 15 percent of the retail chain’s 360 stores and other buildings in Texas.

Biomass

• The creation of a joint venture with AREVA to build power plants fueled by wood waste – the first “biopower” (biomass to electricity) partnership in the U.S. between two major energy companies.

Landfill Gas

• The purchase of electricity generated by combusting methane naturally emitted from decaying garbage at two large landfills in North Carolina and South Carolina.

Electric Vehicles

• Partnerships with General Motors and several other automakers to help lay the groundwork for the deployment of vehicle-charging stations – critical for the large-scale launch of plug-in electric cars and trucks.

Energy Efficiency

• Major energy efficiency programs to help Duke Energy’s 4 million customers in North Carolina, South Carolina, Indiana, Ohio and Kentucky use less electricity and save money.

• An investment of at least $1 billion to improve the efficiency of its substations, power lines and electric and gas meters, using advanced digital “smart grid” technology.

In addition to hearing Rogers’ remarks, shareholders re-elected all 10 members of Duke Energy’s board of directors to one-year terms. The company has a declassified board, meaning that shareholders vote on all directors at each annual meeting.

Shareholders also ratified the selection of Deloitte & Touche as the company’s independent public accountant for 2009.

Property owners interested in having their home, business or land considered as a potential solar site can register online at www.duke-energy.com/solar-host. Properties must be located in North Carolina and currently served by Duke Energy.

Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Duke Energy is a Fortune 500 company traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol DUK. More information about the company is available on the Internet at: www.duke-energy.com.

If you do not qualify for this program you could always build your own solar power panel, it can be a very cost effective way of generating your own electricity.

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Wakeland’s Newest Housing Project is Affordable and Green

Amid unprecedented housing-affordability challenges for low-income families, Wakeland Housing and Development Corp. and Chula Vista city leaders today celebrated the grand opening of the region’s newest affordable housing project, which is targeted for the highest distinction in “green” building.

Los Vecinos Apartments, a $17.6 million, 42-unit complex in Southwest Chula Vista, was designed and built to achieve LEED* Platinum certification for energy savings and efficiencies. The project features an extensive solar power system that will provide nearly 100 percent of the development’s electricity.

Other design features include the heavy use of ceiling fans and natural ventilation instead of air conditioning. Tankless hot water heaters, Energy Star appliances and high-efficacy lighting fixtures will keep energy costs to a minimum. Landscaping and irrigation techniques and low-flow fixtures will minimize water use.

Residents who fully utilize the energy-efficient features of Los Vecinos will have an opportunity to save money on their electric and water bills.

“In going green we committed to minimizing energy and water use, but also to creating durable, energy-efficient housing for decades to come,” said Ken Sauder, president of Wakeland Housing. “Many of the choices we made inside the units and around the complex were dictated by a desire to develop a project that will stand up well over time.”

Los Vecinos consists of 1-, 2- and 3-bedroom units on three floors as well as a 1,500-square-foot community center, where residents will have access to programs on health and wellness, finance and computer literacy and “going green.” Families earning between $16,600 and $58,800 will reside there.

Major funders of the project included Red Capital Markets, Inc., Wells Fargo Bank, City of Chula Vista Redevelopment Agency, California Community Reinvestment Corporation and California Energy Commission/New Solar Homes Partnership.

Wakeland’s development partners for Los Vecinos included: design by Rodriguez Associates Architects & Planners, built by Wermers Construction and green consultant Global Green USA. SDG&E underwrote key analyses of energy-efficiency strategies for the project.

*The Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Green Building Rating System™ is the nationally accepted benchmark for the design, construction and operation of high performance green buildings.

This is great news for the people that qualify for this kind of housing, but the rest of us will still have to pay for our electricity. Unless you can build your own solar power panel, of course.

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Apache Junction man invents solar powered motorcycle

Interesting concept here – a solar powered motorcycle. Invented by Richard Grych from Apache Junction, Arizona, the motorcycle is almost totally covered with solar panels and has a range of about 50 miles from a full charge.

Building your own solar power panel can be a very cost effective way of generating your own electricity, whether it be for static sites like your home or transport vehicles such as cars and motorcycles.

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