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Wednesday, February 7, 2007

Pollution is bad for children..........and Iranians

Following up my post on Pittsburgh air quality and its potential link to increased asthma rates here are a few recent stories on the health consequences of air pollution:
Traffic pollution can stunt lung development: study

New figures showed a sharp rise in pollution-related deaths in Iran



The first one, regarding the correlation of traffic pollution and lung problems in children, is further proof that the Pittsburgh region's poor air quality is behind the region's, or part of the region's above average asthma rates. (Hey Harold - here is another link for you).

The second story on Iran highlights an alarming trend in developing economies around the world. Globalization, increasing ranks of the middle class(more automobiles), and little or no environmental oversight mean cities such as Tehran and smaller industrial towns in China (see story on Leifeng and Puxing ) are experiencing deadly pollution levels, levels that we haven't seen in the US since the days of Carnegie and Frick.

If this Global Warming thing is as bad as it seems - and if the US and our allies get their act together - will it matter? How could an energy independent, less polluting US and its 300 million citizens offset the damage being done by the economic run-away freight train known as China? These countries are basically where we were at the turn of the 20th century, our democratic made those pollution levels by the major industries unsustainable (although not enough has been done in the following 100 years!). China's economy will eventually surpass ours, but the lack of free speech makes it difficult for the type of sea change necessary to halt the dangerous effects of global warming.

The Global corporations, led by GE, a major sponsor of the 2008 Olympic games in Beijing, need to step in and lend their expertise and clout to help curb this problem.

2 comments:

Jay Draiman said...

MANDATORY RENEWABLE ENERGY – THE ENERGY EVOLUTION –R13

In order to insure energy and economic independence as well as better economic growth without being blackmailed by foreign countries, our country, the United States of America’s Utilization of Energy Sources must change.
"Energy drives our entire economy.” We must protect it. "Let's face it, without energy the whole economy and economic society we have set up would come to a halt. So you want to have control over such an important resource that you need for your society and your economy." The American way of life is not negotiable.
Our continued dependence on fossil fuels could and will lead to catastrophic consequences.

The federal, state and local government should implement a mandatory renewable energy installation program for residential and commercial property on new construction and remodeling projects with the use of energy efficient material, mechanical systems, appliances, lighting, retrofits etc. The source of energy must be by renewable energy such as Solar-Photovoltaic, Geothermal, Wind, Biofuels, Ocean-Tidal, Hydrogen-Fuel Cell etc. This includes the utilizing of water from lakes, rivers and oceans to circulate in cooling towers to produce air conditioning and the utilization of proper landscaping to reduce energy consumption. (Sales tax on renewable energy products and energy efficiency should be reduced or eliminated)

The implementation of mandatory renewable energy could be done on a gradual scale over the next 10 years. At the end of the 10 year period all construction and energy use in the structures throughout the United States must be 100% powered by renewable energy. (This can be done by amending building code)

In addition, the governments must impose laws, rules and regulations whereby the utility companies must comply with a fair “NET METERING” (the buying of excess generation from the consumer at market price), including the promotion of research and production of “renewable energy technology” with various long term incentives and grants. The various foundations in existence should be used to contribute to this cause.

A mandatory time table should also be established for the automobile industry to gradually produce an automobile powered by renewable energy. The American automobile industry is surely capable of accomplishing this task. As an inducement to buy hybrid automobiles (sales tax should be reduced or eliminated on American manufactured automobiles).

This is a way to expedite our energy independence and economic growth. (This will also create a substantial amount of new jobs). It will take maximum effort and a relentless pursuit of the private, commercial and industrial government sectors’ commitment to renewable energy – energy generation (wind, solar, hydro, biofuels, geothermal, energy storage (fuel cells, advance batteries), energy infrastructure (management, transmission) and energy efficiency (lighting, sensors, automation, conservation) (rainwater harvesting, water conservation) (energy and natural resources conservation) in order to achieve our energy independence.

"To succeed, you have to believe in something with such a passion that it becomes a reality."

Jay Draiman, Energy Consultant
Northridge, CA. 91325
Feb. 16, 2007

P.S. I have a very deep belief in America's capabilities. Within the next 10 years we can accomplish our energy independence, if we as a nation truly set our goals to accomplish this.
I happen to believe that we can do it. In another crisis--the one in 1942--President Franklin D. Roosevelt said this country would build 60,000 [50,000] military aircraft. By 1943, production in that program had reached 125,000 aircraft annually. They did it then. We can do it now.
"the way we produce and use energy must fundamentally change."
The American people resilience and determination to retain the way of life is unconquerable and we as a nation will succeed in this endeavor of Energy Independence.

The Oil Companies should be required to invest a substantial percentage of their profit in renewable energy R&D and implementation. Those who do not will be panelized by the public at large by boy cutting their products.

Solar energy is the source of all energy on the earth (excepting volcanic geothermal). Wind, wave and fossil fuels all get their energy from the sun. Fossil fuels are only a battery which will eventually run out. The sooner we can exploit all forms of Solar energy (cost effectively or not against dubiously cheap FFs) the better off we will all be. If the battery runs out first, the survivors will all be living like in the 18th century again.

Every new home built should come with a solar package. A 1.5 kW per bedroom is a good rule of thumb. The formula 1.5 X's 5 hrs per day X's 30 days will produce about 225 kWh per bedroom monthly. This peak production period will offset 17 to 2

4 cents per kWh with a potential of $160 per month or about $60,000 over the 30-year mortgage period for a three-bedroom home. It is economically feasible at the current energy price and the interest portion of the loan is deductible. Why not?

Title 24 has been mandated forcing developers to build energy efficient homes. Their bull-headedness put them in that position and now they see that Title 24 works with little added cost. Solar should also be mandated and if the developer designs a home that solar is impossible to do then they should pay an equivalent mitigation fee allowing others to put solar on in place of their negligence. (Installation should be paid “performance based”).

Installation of renewable energy and its performance should be paid to the installer and manufacturer based on "performance based" (that means they are held accountable for the performance of the product - that includes the automobile industry). This will gain the trust and confidence of the end-user to proceed with such a project; it will also prove to the public that it is a viable avenue of energy conservation.

Installing a renewable energy system on your home or business increases the value of the property and provides a marketing advantage.

Nations of the world should unite and join together in a cohesive effort to develop and implement MANDATORY RENEWABLE ENERGY for the sake of humankind and future generations.
The head of the U.S. government's renewable energy lab said Monday (Feb. 5) that the federal government is doing "embarrassingly few things" to foster renewable energy, leaving leadership to the states at a time of opportunity to change the nation's energy future. "I see little happening at the federal level. Much more needs to happen." What's needed, he said, is a change of our national mind set. Instead of viewing the hurdles that still face renewable sources and setting national energy goals with those hurdles in mind, we should set ambitious national renewable energy goals and set about overcoming the hurdles to meet them. We have an opportunity, an opportunity we can take advantage of or an opportunity we can squander and let go,"
solar energy - the direct conversion of sunlight with solar cells, either into electricity or hydrogen, faces cost hurdles independent of their intrinsic efficiency. Ways must be found to lower production costs and design better conversion and storage systems.
FEDERAL BUILDINGS WITH SOLAR ENERGY – Renewable Energy
All government buildings, Federal, State, County, City etc. should be mandated to be energy efficient and must use renewable energy on all new structures and structures that are been remodeled/upgraded.
"The goverment should serve as an example to its citizens"
Jay Draiman

Northridge, CA 91325
Email: renewableenergy2@msn.com

Jay Draiman said...

Homeowners can cut energy bills by making their houses more energy-efficient R5
_________________________________________
By YJ Draiman
HOMEOWNERS can practically hear the meters ticking as their air conditioners fight this summer's sweltering heat.
But that doesn't mean there aren't some things they can do to ward off high energy bills now--and once winter sweeps in.
Just ask THE ENERGY EXPERT, who conducts residential energy audits as National Energy Efficiency Auditor.
"The most common problem is air infiltration," he said, "where unconditioned air meets conditioned air."
THE ENERGY EXPERT, who uses smoke pencils to detect leaks and infrared scans to check insulation, windows, attics and roofs, said poorly insulated "room additions" over garages top the list of energy wasters.
"Builders don't always sheathe the back side of the drywall in insulation, so hot attic air infiltrates the room," he said. "There's only one piece of drywall keeping the hot air out."
THE ENERGY Experts’ solution is to install energy-efficient foam board with an aluminum-foil backing behind the drywall or wool insulation which also absorbs sound. A recent job cost about $400 and or insulation and attic fans in the attic – there is also a rebate and tax credits (check with your local utility). (Insulation in the attic and attic fans reduce energy consumption substantially). Utilizing night-time outside air to cool down the house.
"It pays for itself in one season," THE ENERGY EXPERT said.
Homeowners typically spend about $1,600 a year to heat and cool the house, turn lights on and off, and operate appliances, said spokeswoman for the nonprofit Alliance to Save Energy.
But they can cut those expenses by as much as $600 by switching to more energy-efficient products and taking a variety of other energy-saving steps.
Those can be as simple as replacing a 15- to 20-year-old refrigerator with a new Energy Star model, which uses about a fourth as much electricity as an older appliance, and/or putting compact florescent bulbs or LED bulbs in at least the five most commonly used light fixtures in the house. You should also replace burned out motors/compressors with energy efficient multi-stage motors. Install photocell for outside lighting.
"Compact fluorescents cost more up front, but you really make it up because they use somewhere between 20 and 25 percent of the energy required for an incandescent and they last 10 times longer," the Energy Expert said. "Plus, they don't burn as hot, so they don't heat up the place during the summer and your air conditioner has to work less hard."
A good place for homeowners to start in determining how their energy usage stacks up is to log on to the Home Energy Saver at homeenergysaver.lbl.gov.
Developed by the Department of Energy and the Environmental Protection Agency, this site calculates energy use and savings tips based on information that users provide. Type in a ZIP code and up pop the energy costs of an average home and an energy-efficient home for that area.
The program also includes a questionnaire that asks for more detailed information so it can provide a customized answer. It also has links to sites that provide a wealth of information about its energy-saving recommendations.
On various utility companies Web sites, shoppers can order a similarly helpful gizmo called Watts Up? Plug in any standard 120-volt appliance or electronic device, and it will analyze such things as current draw, incoming voltage and cost of operation. The Watts Up? Basic model costs $89.95 and the pro version costs $123.95.
Rather leave audits to professionals?
Some auditors offer a standard audit for $100 that includes a visual inspection of the house and its heating, ventilation and air-conditioning systems. An expanded audit, which costs $200, includes tests to check for leaks in air ducts and the house's air-tightness.
Your local utility company may do audits, also has a list of providers on its Web site.
Low-income homeowners can get help for free through the Aging weatherization assistance program.
"We go into the house and do various tests to find problem areas," said the Energy Consultant. "What we do in most cases is make minor repairs and blow in insulation."
Last fiscal year, many families got help through the federally funded program.
Sometimes, however, the most effective ways to trim energy usage are the easiest, the Energy Expert said.
Putting up weather-stripping, for example, is something anyone can do yet many people overlook, he said. The same goes for changing a heating system's air filters on a regular basis or a set-back thermostat.
The Energy Expert also recommended installing ceiling fans and programmable electronic thermostats. A fan can make a room feel cooler so the air conditioning can be turned up, and a programmable thermostat automatically lowers the heat setting while homeowners are at work and raises it just before they return.
The Energy Expert has also learned that putting the screens/shades/awning on the south-facing windows of the house in the summer will help block out some of the sun's fierce heat. In some states especially the western parts of the United States temperature at night falls to 50-60 degrees – open the windows and shut the air-condition and or utilize a fan to bring in the fresh cooler air – it is also healthier and reduces indoor pollution. In areas of the country that have a high humidity – you can install a dehumidifier in the summer to reduce energy cost and a humidifier in the winter.
A homeowner can also replace the windows with energy efficient windows. This will insulate the house further, produce better indoor temperature control and increase the value of the home. Many States and some Utility companies offer rebates and or credits for replacement windows.
"I take the screens and or shades off in the winter," The Energy Expert said.
Increasing a house's energy efficiency not only lowers the owner's bills, it also raises the value of the property. According to an EPA-funded study done in 2005, the latest year for which figures are available, a house's value jumps $10 to $25 for every $1 the owner is able to save on annual fuel/energy bills. You can also utilize rainwater and grey water to reduce your water and sewer bill. Some utility companies will allow you to install a sub-meter for the water used for landscaping, swimming pools and ponds – which eliminates the sewer charge from that portion of your water bill.
"You'll get a better price because you can show them your heating and cooling bills, which are reasonable and not outrageous," said The Energy Expert, national energy-management coordinator.
The Energy Expert oversees many Energy Saver Home programs, which inspects houses as they're being built to insure they're properly insulated and sealed. The inspections cost $250 and come with a year-long warranty. For an added service The Energy Expert will perform a site inspection for the installation of Solar/Photovoltaic system for the home and/or business and its benefits, costs, rebates, tax credits, financing and ROI.
Prospective buyers of energy-efficient houses can get a break, too.
"Some mortgage companies will allow you a better debt-to-income ratio," The Energy Expert said. "They know your electric/gas utility bills will be less so you'll have more income to put toward your mortgage."
Some utilities offer free energy efficient light bulbs replacement for multi-family housing
YJ Draiman - Energy Savers 9/4/2007 – renewableenergy2@msn.com
PS. The politician’s intentions were captured perfectly. The eco-pretensions of the rich and the stupefying gullibility with which they received the task of energy savings are to be the laughing stock of society.

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