Thursday, January 25, 2007

Renewable Energy Industry Reacts to State of the Union

[I provide the following article, from Renewable Energy Access.com, without specific comment, except to say that my own response to the president's State of the Union address is similarly lukewarm. I will likely work on my own response to the president's address this weekend when I hopefully have some more time to write. Until then...]

Proponents of the renewable energy industry quickly reacted to U.S. President George Bush's recent State of the Union Address, specifically those portions of his plans addressing solar and wind energy, cutting U.S. gas consumption 20 percent by 2017, raising the fuel standard for renewable fuels, and increasing battery research for hybrid cars [again, for a summary of the energy proposals in the State of the Union, see this Green Car Congress post].

"These technologies will help us be better stewards of the environment, and they will help us to confront the serious challenge of global climate change," said President Bush.

Yet amid slight praise for broaching the topic of how to address climate change through the use of renewable energies, increased R&D for ethanol, and an RFS, many renewable energy advocates agree: it's not enough.

Scott Sklar, President, The Stella Group, Ltd.:
"While the President actually mentioned the word "climate change" in his State of the Union speech, the environmental groups got none of what they directly wanted towards establishing some sort of mandatory emissions caps. ... As was seen from the President's subdued delivery, focus on Iraq, and acknowledgments on the shift of power to a divided government -- all these energy proposals will be sifted, added to and modified by the Democratic Leadership in the House and Senate. The speech signifies the formal start of this process, and now the political theater and process begins."

Bill Prindle, Acting Executive Director, American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy:
"The President sets extremely ambitious goals for alternative fuels, while making tepid promises on fuel economy. While we need new clean fuels, energy efficiency is the first fuel in the race for energy security. Congress should set a stronger CAFE standard that would save at least 12 billion gallons of gasoline in 2017 and 50 billion in 2030."

Chris Flavin, President, Worldwatch Institute:
"Beyond biofuels, the array of other promising renewable energy sources -- including solar energy, wind power, and geothermal energy -- received only a mention in the president's speech, and is generally ignored in his detailed energy plan. It will therefore fall to Congress to develop the kind of solid, far-reaching national commitment to renewable resources and efficiency that will be needed to fuel a strong domestic economy and lower the consumption of oil and other fossil fuels."

Ken Bossong, Coordinator, The Sustainable Energy Network:
"Curbing gasoline use by 20 percent over the next decade is a positive goal but it is not enough. It is time to pull out all of the stops and launch an intensive national effort to significantly reduce total energy use and greatly increase the share of energy coming from renewable sources - with a goal of at least 25 percent by 2025. This would include at least a near-term doubling, if not tripling, of federal tax incentives as well as federal funding of research, development, and deployment of the full spectrum of energy efficient and renewable energy technologies -- with heavy emphasis on actual deployment."

Brent Erickson, Executive Vice President, Biotechnology Industry Organization:
"By proposing a new renewable energy standard that will require fuel blenders to use up to 35 billion gallons of renewable fuel by 2017, the President is sending a dramatically positive signal to the investment community, to farmers, to biotech companies and to gasoline refiners that our government will work with the private sector to make the biofuels sector a major contributor to our energy independence. Biotechnology is the key enabling technology that can help the United States significantly reduce its use of foreign petroleum. America could soon be producing a significant portion of its transportation fuel needs from crops and crop residues with the help of improved crop yields from agricultural biotechnology, increased ethanol production efficiency from industrial biotechnology, and the production of cellulosic biomass ethanol."

Brian Jennings, Executive Vice President, American Coalition for Ethanol:
"President Bush's call to increase the use of renewable and alternative fuels, including ethanol, to 35 billion gallons by 2017 sends a very powerful signal that an ambitious yet attainable Renewable Fuels Standard goal is the ideal strategy to strengthen energy security and independence in the U.S. An RFS level of 35 billion gallons by 2017 is consistent with ACE's call for an RFS of 60 billion gallons by 2030, and we are pleased that this and other important aspects of ACE's legislative plan have already been included in S. 23, the Biofuels Security Act introduced in the 110th Congress by Senators Harkin and Lugar."

Scott Faber, Farm Policy Campaign Director, Environmental Defense:
"Expanding the production of ethanol will help boost the profitability of our farmers and reduce our dependence on foreign sources of energy. To ensure that ethanol feed stocks are grown in ways that meet our environmental challenges, Congress should double funding for voluntary USDA conservation programs when Congress renews farm and food policies this year. ... Renewal of farm and food policies creates an opportunity to dramatically increase renewable energy development on our farms, ranches, and forest lands. The next Farm Bill should expand USDA grants and loan guarantees to develop renewable energy, and should for the first time link USDA investments in renewable energy to an index of environmental benefits."

4 comments:

Jay Draiman said...

MANDATORY RENEWABLE ENERGY – THE ENERGY EVOLUTION –R11

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, etc. The source of energy must by renewable energy such as Solar-Photovoltaic, Geothermal, Wind, Biofuels, Ocean-Tidal, etc. including utilizing 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 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
Jan. 26, 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 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.

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 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.


Jay Draiman
Northridge, CA 91325
Email: renewableenergy2@msn.com

WattHead said...

Jay, with all due respect, please keep your comments here topical, and stop re-posting this long manifesto of yours (I think this is the third time).

I appreciate comments here on this blog, but if you have something that long to say, you'd probably be better off starting your own blog. They are free and easy to use here at blogger (and numerous other sites). It looks like you've got a lot of ideas on the subject and you could use a blog of your own to explore them more fully. Thank you,

Jesse Jenkins

Jay Draiman said...

Energy Independence begins with Energy efficiency

Updated
MANDATORY RENEWABLE ENERGY – THE ENERGY EVOLUTION –R15
By Jay Draiman, Energy Consultant
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, replacement of appliances, motors, HVAC with the use of energy efficient materials-products, mechanical systems, appliances, lighting, insulation, 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
May 31, 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. It also decreases our trade deficit.

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.

Disenco Energy of the UK has announced it has reached important
milestones leading to full commercialization, such as the completion of
field trials for its home, micro combined heat and power plant (m-CHP).
The company expects to begin a product roll out in the second quarter of
2008.
Operating at over 90 percent efficiency, the m-CHP will be able to
provide 15 kilowatts of thermal energy (about 50,000 Btu’s) for heat and
hot water and generate 3 kilowatts of electricity. The m-CHP uses a
Stirling engine generator and would be a direct replacement for a home’s
boiler.
Running on piped-in natural gas the unit would create some independence
from the power grid, but still remain connected to the gas supply
network.
Whereas heat is supplied only when the generator is running (or
conversely electricity is generated only when heat is needed) a back-up
battery system and heavily insulated hot water storage tank seem
eventual options for more complete energy independence.

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 government should serve as an example to its citizens"

Jay Draiman, Energy Consultant
Northridge, CA 91325
Email: renewableenergy2@msn.com.

YJ Draiman said...

Homeowners can cut energy bills by making their houses more energy-efficient R2
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. A recent job cost about $300 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).
"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.
"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 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.
"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."
YJ Draiman - Energy Savers 6/29/2007 – renewableenergy2@msn.com