Tuesday, June 16, 2009

How Geothermal Energy Works

By Gloria Smith

Geothermal energy is one of the renewable forms of energy being utilized today in various applications. As a natural resource that is in abundant supply, its usage in the future is expected to grow more.

The term geothermal is actually a combination of two Greek words - geo which means earth and therme meaning heat. As one of earth's resources, geothermal energy is clean and can be sustained for long years.

This alternative energy comes from the earth's heat found underneath its surface. The earth's crust is mainly a result of the past existence of millions of volcanoes and great volumes of magma that did not erupt but rather cooled below the surface. In addition, the earth's core has high temperatures between 50 and 60 degrees Fahrenheit that remain constant throughout the year.

This makes it an ideal source of heat for various purposes. Among its resources include the shallow ground, hot water and hot rock below the earth's surface and molten rock or magma deep down. These resources have two main categories - the high temperature (220 degrees Celsius and above) geothermal resources found in volcanic regions and island chains and the moderate/low temperature found on all continents. The high temperature resources are mostly used in power production.


In extracting hot water for geothermal reservoirs, wells are normally drilled into underground reservoirs for use in generating electricity. The steam from a reservoir is used by some geothermal power plants to power turbine/generator. Other plants use the hot water to boil a working fluid that vaporizes and then turns a turbine.

Hot dry rock, on the other hand, can be found about three to five miles deep down the earth's surface. In certain areas, they can be found at lesser depths. To extract heat from these rocks, cold water is injected down a well which filters through the cracks in the rocks situated in the hot region. Heated water is eventually drawn off from the recovery well. This then flashes into steam upon reaching the surface.

Steam can be used to drive a turbo generator. However, in order to do this, steam must first be purified. In heating homes, it can pass through a heat exchanger to provide heated water.

A hot dry rock system (EGS) reaches at least 10 kilometers down into hard rock. It is estimated that the United States alone has a huge resource of hard rocks that can supply the world's energy needs for some 30,000 years.

Major uses

Hot water sourced underground can be used in a number of ways such as in generating electricity, heating buildings, growing plants in greenhouses, drying crops, heating water at fish farms. In industrial application, it is used in pasteurizing milk.

Geothermal heat pumps are used in heating and cooling homes and buildings. This type of heating system is made up of a heat pump, ductwork or air delivery system and a loop or a series of pipes buried in the shallow ground near the home or building.

Currently, geothermal power is produced in more than 20 countries. These include the U.S., Italy, Germany, France, The Netherlands, Mexico, Russia, New Zealand, Turkey, China, Japan, the Philippines and Iceland. The first geothermal power plant was constructed at Landrello, Italy while the second was built at Wairekei in New Zealand.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Propane Tanks Are One Aspect of Building an Alternative Energy System for Your Home

By Simon Harris

The use of propane has greatly increased over the years. There are several factors for this. In some cases natural gas line are not available in certain areas. There are no other options that are available. In some cases propane has become of the fuel of choice. This is especially true when home owners want to avoid an all electric home and cut back on some of the cost of using other fuel alternatives. If you decide to use propane as a fuel source for your home you must consider propane tanks and all of the details that are associated with installation.

Of course propane tanks are necessary to hold and store your fuel source. They are available in many different sizes but all of the construction is just about the same. Most of them are stored above the ground because it is less costly and provides easy access. You can store them under ground but it will cost you more money and the access to the tank becomes a problem in some cases. The homeowner can purchase a tank on average from 500 gallons to 1000 gallons. Keep in mind that a tank can not be filled to capacity. You must leave room at the top for expansion of the propane gas. A good rule to follow is to fill it only to eighty percent of capacity. This will ensure safety and security for your tank.

Make sure to contact your local gas supplier when thinking about using propane. They will be able to provide you will solid and accurate details on the system you will need for propane gas usage. They will give you advice on the size of propane tanks and what you need for your home according to what you are going to use for your system. These professionals offer the best advice as to a plan of action and can provide you with the help you need.

There is no doubt that propane is a good source of fuel and provide many homes with an alternative source of power and energy. Putting in a propane system for your home is not difficult and it is not unreasonable in cost. You can investigate the possibilities for your home with a little research and by talking with your local gas supplier.

Simon Harris writes about Propane Tanks at http://www.propane-prices.org/

Friday, May 8, 2009

Alternative Energy - Hydrogen For Better Fuel

By Steven D. Foster

Some people believe that our energy source in the world will soon be depleted. Our massive use of oils and gasoline will eventually diminish not only our lives but also our environment. The oil companies are sending us a clear message that we will always be dependent on their resources and will never exist without it. Do we even know anything about alternative energy? Have we ever considered how important and helpful alternative energy can be? Why are we so reliant in oils and gasoline to run our machines, industries, and markets?

On February 24, 2009, The President of the United States of America, Barack Obama addressed a speech to the joint session of Congress about the use of alternative energy. He said that "To truly transform our economy, protect our security, and save our planet from the ravages of climate change, we need to ultimately make clean, renewable energy the profitable kind of energy."

What is alternative energy?

Basically the term alternative energy is a renewable energy intended to substitute the traditional fuel sources of our world. It is also a fundamental way to relieve the undesirable consequences derived from the use of oils, gasoline, nuclear energy, and fossil fuels. The adverse effects caused by these traditional fuel sources are:

Global Warming. Release of High Carbon Dioxide in the atmosphere. Obscure disposal of harmful Radioactive Waste. And many more unwanted outcomes to our planet.

Alternative energy is the best solution for the unwanted effects of these traditional fuel sources. And the role of "Hydrogen Fuel" as an alternative energy source is very important in achieving positive changes for our environment. It will also provide us sufficient energy sources that will not only power our machines but will also take us to the next significant step in saving our planet.

What is Hydrogen?

Hydrogen is the third most abundant element of the universe. It is a chemical element with an odorless, tasteless, and colorless characteristic. Hydrogen is a highly flammable diatomic gas which has the lightest weight from to all the elements in the world.

Hydrogen Fuel

When we use hydrogen as a fuel, it burns more cleanly than a regular gasoline. It does not release harmful carbon dioxide that is detrimental to our atmosphere. Here are some positive attributes of a Hydrogen Fuel:

It can be made from different plentiful resources such as coal, natural gas, biomass and water. It can also be created by transferring electrical current through water with a process called electrolysis. When used in an engine or motor, it can emit no harmful gasses. The only waste it produces is water vapor. It has the highest content of energy compared to other kinds of fuels. Disadvantage of a Hydrogen Fuel: Producing Hydrogen Fuel takes a sizeable amount of energy from fossil fuels, and may tend to be more expensive than using traditional kinds of fuels. Some believes that Hydrogen Fuel production is not too economical today.

The Future of Hydrogen Fuel A handful of economist believes that by producing hydrogen fuel from renewable energy like solar and wind power, we may actually lower the cost of making hydrogen fuel. This can also pave the way in producing more alternative energy to power our vehicles, industries and cities. Hydrogen, as an alternative energy For Better Fuel, can actually be our hope for a better and more environment friendly future.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Solar Battery Charger

The Solar Battery Charger - Free, Clean, And Renewable Energy

By = David Faulkner

One of the most annoying realities of our electronic lifestyle is that so many of our electronic must-haves are battery operated. And depending on how often we use them, the life of their batteries can be from a single day to a couple of weeks. While a package of disposable batteries, depending on their size, usually costs less than $5, if they are powering an addiction forming device lie a GameBoy, you may burn through them the way a chain smoker burns through a pack of cigarettes.

While TV remotes, flashlights, and smoke detector batteries may only need changing once or twice a year, GameBoys, MP3s, and cell phones are different stories. Not only that; some of the most-used battery-powered devices require not one, but two batteries. The simple truth is, even disposable batteries can make a dent in the entertainment budget.

Environmental Issues

Not only that; actually disposing of disposable batteries has become an issue, and many landfills are no longer taking them because of the danger they pose to groundwater. Fortunately, many battery manufacturers have been ahead of the environmental curve in addressing this issue, and are now marketing rechargeable batteries to replace disposable ones. And they have gone one environmental step further by creating the solar battery charger.

Advantages Of Solar Battery Chargers

A solar battery charger has two advantages; unlike wall chargers, it does not use energy which you have to pay for to recharge your batteries, and unlike wall chargers, it does not require an electrical outlet. A solar batter charger has built in solar panels which, when placed in a sunny locations, gather the suns rays, which the charger converts to free electricity and feeds to your rechargeable battery or batteries.

As long as you have sun, youll have a way to keep you electronic devices up and running; and a solar battery charger can get your batteries fully recharged in as little as three hours on the brightest days. Most rechargeable batteries are equipped with a light to let you know when they have reached their full charge.

A solar battery charger is not large; in fact it is easily transportable so that you can move it to whatever location will provide the best sun exposure. With a solar battery charger and rechargeable batteries, you need never worry about running out of power for your electronic device again. And even better, you will be powering them with free, renewable, clean solar energy, stored in rechargeable batteries which require no environmentally-threatening disposal!

Solar Water Heater

Directions for a system that can heat seventy liters of water to sixty degrees Celsius.

Transcript of radio broadcast:
19 April 2009
This is the VOA Special English Development Report.
Solar water heaters are devices that use energy from the sun to heat water. Solar water heating is used around the world.

An example of a rooftop solar water heater being built in South Africa
The solar water heater described here is based on a design developed some years ago in Afghanistan. Since then, it has been built and used in many countries. It can heat seventy liters of water to sixty degrees Celsius. It can do this between sunrise and noon on a clear day with an average outside temperature of thirty-two degrees Celsius.

There are two parts to the solar water heater. One part is made of a sheet of metal painted black. This metal surface, placed in contact with the water, will heat the water. Black-painted surfaces that receive the sun's heat become hotter than surfaces of any other color.

The black metal plate is called a collector. There are several kinds of metal sheets that can be used for the collector. Metal sheets that have raised sections will work very well. These corrugated sheets often are used to make the roofs of houses.

Once the water is heated, it is kept hot with material called insulation. This allows the water to stay warm for a long time.

The second part of the solar water heater holds the water for the system. This storage tank can be a container that holds about one hundred liters. Two rubber pipes are attached to the water storage tank. One pipe lets water flow into the system. The other lets water flow out.

When the water heater is working correctly, water will flow from the storage tank to the collector and back again. You can use the hot water at the top of the tank for washing and cleaning. You can change the flow of water so that the temperature is hot or warm as desired.

This solar water heater is easy to build and operate. It will last about two years before the rubber pipes need to be replaced.

There is also something else you will need to make the solar water heater work -- the sun. As you might expect, the heater will heat water only on sunny days.

You can get more information about projects like solar water heaters from EnterpriseWorks/VITA. This nonprofit group works to fights poverty in many countries. The Web site is enterpriseworks.org. Choose the link for News & Resources, then click on Publications.

Transcripts, MP3s and podcasts of our reports are at voaspecialenglish.com.

And that's the VOA Special English Development Report. I'm Steve Ember.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

How to Get Free Alternative Energy?

By Atul B Tanna

The major decision regarding this entire deal of things that we are going to describe is going to center on the question- do I want my home to run on solar power or not. If you have answered the question in the affirmative then we can proceed with our remaining set of recommendations. Choose from the array of solar strategies and decide how you want your home to be 'solarised'? Your choice can be guided by the quantities of solar power you would require to the money it will cost you to the nature of the solar plan you adopt keeping in mind the cost ruction and architecture of the house. A sun space is an additional requirement which is a patch of space you need to find inside your house to receive sunlight. Not only does this space help reduce power bills it also adds to the decor of the house.

A sun space has to be constructed in a way in which it receives the heat and makes productive use of it. They are amenable to the design suited to any and every architecture. The sun space serves to satisfy from 10 to 50% percent of the heating requirements of the house. The sun space is ruled by three chief considerations- the size, the glazing and the location of the sun space inside the house.

Specific solar units like sun spaces are now designed on special software with which you can customize your sun space. Once you have decided on the location you need to think of assize which is perfect for this space. You could have one which is very big but it might be so deeply located inside your house that the back wall doesn't get any sun heat. The depth at which you want your sun space to be located inside the house depends on the height of the south facing windows and outlets and the nature of roof glazing you have. The angle of the sun rays and the shades can also be factors in deciding the location of the sun space inside the house.
The glazing is particularly important, as we have told you. Given the best of cases the glazing will extract heat and every square feet of glazing can take at least enough heat to heat two square feet on the sun space. As a result the glazing on the south facing walls will be comprehensive and it need not be so for the east and west walls. An angular specification of 60 degrees is required to let the glazing function properly. Fixed glass is usually used for glazing. Burt other constituent material is often cheaper. Windows if fixed certainly curtails the amount of heat lost especially if they have wooden frames. With a metal frame you have to keep in mind to find the kind of metal frame which allows for thermal absorbers between the inner and the outer sides. The best option would be windows with double insulation.

The distribution of the heat absorbed by glazing can be helped by the usage of fans. The vents could have small fans which let the heat distribute. This makes use of convection currents. The usage of things like pre cast concrete sub-floors with a core which is used to absorb the heat makes the process more energy efficient. Fans extract the heat from the concrete and let the remaining heat stay for later use. The underground rock bed system can be used for similar purposes.

Alternative energy sources if creatively established can do a world of good to your power bills and the environment and at the same time can make your home an independent energy source. So go ahead and try them with a little knowledge about solar energy for best results.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Heating Oil Prices

Refining petroleum or crude oil produces heating oil. Residential use for heating accounts for most heating oil consumption; close to 8 percent of American homes use heating oil.
Like gasoline and diesel prices, heating oil prices depend to a large extent on the supply and price of crude oil. If there is too much crude oil available in the marketplace, oil prices, including heating oil prices, fall. A crude oil supply shortage, alone or combined with increased demand for crude oil products, drives heating oil prices up. Local market factors also affect the price of heating oil. If a heating oil supplier sets its prices too high, consumers may switch to another supplier. Heating oil prices tend to go up seasonally, with prices being highest during the winter. This is because consumption of heating oil rises as it becomes colder. Many oil suppliers offer fixed price schemes to help consumers control the costs of using heating oil. Some consumers try and avoid seasonal increases in heating oil prices by filling their tanks during the summer months, when prices are lower.
This downside is comprised by the various heating oil prices that need to be paid. While many times these heating oil prices are very hard to bear there are compensations to be found.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Solar Hot Water

Solar Hot Water Systems

Solar hot water heating systems are a great way to effectively conserve energy and reduce your energy bill.

Contrary to popular belief, solar water heating is not a new technology. Solar water heating systems have been used commercially for over a century now, with the first commercial water heater (the Climax Solar-Water Heater) going on sale in 1891 in the United States. Due to its effectiveness and low cost, the solar water heating gained popularity until, by 1941, more than half the population of Florida was getting its hot water through solar water heaters!

The United States is not the only country with a solar water heating history. Important Facts about Solar Hot Water Heating Systems

* Solar water heating can be used in any climate. * The fuel used to run a solar water heater is sunshine. * A solar hot water heater can reduce your water heating bill by fifty to eighty percent. * Aside from reducing your energy bill right now, a solar water heating system will protect you from future energy price increases. * Solar heaters can be installed in combination with backup systems. In fact, you could install a solar water heater next to your existing system and make it possible switch to conventional water heating whenever necessary. -Types of Solar Hot Water Heating Systems

There are two types of solar water heating systems, active solar water heating systems and passive solar water heating systems. - Active Solar Hot Water Heating

There are two main designs of active water heating systems. - Passive Solar Hot Water Heating

Passive solar water heating systems are usually cheaper than "active solar water heating systems," as they do not need controls or pumps to circulate the water.

If you live in a warm climate, a passive water heating system might be all you need. Passive water heating systems are also known for being very reliable.

Essentially, solar water heating systems consist of a water storage tank and its solar collectors. The solar collectors are used to collect solar energy which heats water, and the tanks store the heated water.

Solar Hot Water Heater - A Great Way To Save Energy

Typically in a solar hot water heater the heat will transfer the water into pipes or other types of storage systems then it is exposed it to sunlight, heating the water contained in the pipes. In a solar hot water heater the storage tank needs to be very well insulated to keep the water's heat level elevated.. Many passive systems depend on the water temperature to move water to the storage tank as cold water sinks to the bottom and hot water ends up rising to the top.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Make Energy With a Wind Generator

Building a Windmill

For many people, wind power comes from a windmill that has been placed strategically to catch the wind, so that it can be converted into energy that you can use to power anything in your home. For most people, a large open area is the best choice for producing wind power, especially if there is low wind in your area for a large portion of the year.
To make a wind generator, the cost can run from about one hundred to two hundred dollars if you have the right guide to show you exactly what you need to build the wind power system.

Instructions to Build a Wind Generator - Where to Find Them
So if you are looking for a way to subsidise the cost of your electricity bills and heating bills by using wind generator technology, then it is highly possible for you to do it yourself and save a large part of the initial investment costs needed to build a wind generator.
Luckily, there are quite a few companies and environmental experts that have put together information packages which tell you exactly where to source the parts for and how to build a wind powered generator, a solar powered generator, and also other techniques which you can use to save lots of power in your own home.

Several of those alternative solutions are solar power, wind power and hydro power.

Wind power is another popular approach as the cost of using wind is free and more than that unlimited in supply.

Let's capitalize on wind energy by learning how to build wind generator that can supply your house for less than $500.

Maybe your area is not too windy but has a lot of water supply; in that case building wind generator will be useless.

The best combination is to combine wind power and solar power for maximum advantages. The larger your electric needs, the bigger blade diameters you will need.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Solar Battery

How Solar Powered Battery Chargers Can Ease Your Everyday's Life

Solar battery charger is one of these devices that became a necessity once we have all these electric devices that we use on a daily basis. Most solar chargers are equipped with plug kits which match to variety of electric devices. There is no usage cost when using solar battery chargers as opposed to the utility electricity chargers. No pollution released to the atmosphere when using portable solar charger and no chemicals leached into our ground water when discarded since we are using rechargeable batteries, so you contribute to keep environment clean, not to mention that you save money when you use a solar charger.
As you can see there are many benefits and advantages while using solar powered battery charger.

Using Solar Battery Chargers For All of Small Electronic Devices

Recent advancements in the use of solar energy have expanded to solar battery chargers. Solar battery chargers take anywhere from eight to ten hours of sunlight to charge completely. Some solar battery chargers can charge under the light of lamp or normal light bulbs. Using solar battery chargers means that we never have to hassle with the long annoying cords and plugs that come with the traditional chargers. The new solar battery chargers however are very easy to use and you do not have to be a technical guru to use the chargers. If we all do our part to partake in buying renewable energy sources like solar battery chargers, we can make a difference in the world and environment. Fossil fuel shortages and price increases in those fossil fuels make anything renewable like solar battery chargers extremely advantageous to use.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Using a Wind Generator For Renewable Energy

People have been using wind energy to water animals and drain land for literally centuries, and now you can use the power of the wind to lower your energy costs, and help make your home more environmentally friendly.

Building Your Wind Generator
The most important part of making renewable energy from the wind is making sure that you build a windmill that will work for the average wind speeds in your area. For most people on the North American continent, wind energy will be stronger in the winter and less productive in the summer. To build a productive wind generator, you will need to do a little research to find out exactly what you need to make renewable energy, and then build your windmill. For most people, creating renewable energy from wind power does take some learning experiences.

So, you're thinking about getting into clean energy by building your own wind generator, huh? The cleanest energy available right now is wind energy and you can build a wind generator to capture that power for a small investment of time and money. Building a generator means you can cut your energy bill by 30-100%. Building a wind generator is like recycling: you'll be part of the solution rather than part of the problem.

So, you're thinking about getting into clean energy by building your own wind generator, huh? Good idea. With all the news about a looming energy crisis and global warming, lots of other people are trying to learn more about how to be more responsible and self-sufficient. The cleanest energy available right now is wind energy and you can build a wind generator to capture that power for a small investment of time and money. Here are the four questions I am asked the most by people who want to try building their own windmill.

Q: Why Should I Build a DIY Wind Generator?
A: Take a look at your electric bills by month for the last 3 years. You'll notice that it's going up...way up! Chances are you're paying 10-20% more on energy today than you were 3 years ago. Building a generator means you can cut your energy bill by 30-100%. Also, as our population grows the load on the power grid is rising too. If you live in California you've heard of rolling blackouts because of the lack of power at peak times. Building a wind generator is like recycling: you'll be part of the solution rather than part of the problem.
Q: How Much Energy Will I Be Able To Make?
A: This depends on your energy demand and location. Windy areas can make as much as 10kw of energy. Calm areas can produce in the range of 2-4kw. The typical American home uses 30kwh of electricity a day. That means you could make all the power you need with 3 wind generators running 24 hours a day. It depends on what percentage of your electricity you want to replace.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Solving Energy Problems With Conservation


Many suggestions are circulating on ways to save gasoline through conservation. Some people have had the nerve to actually favor ideas like Detroit Democrat Dingle's fifty cents excise tax on every gallon of gasoline. That surprises me but I guess that it makes more sense to some than to others. If you talk to a construction worker driving a work truck loaded with equipment who has to get 14 MPG with that rig or else be out on the street then he would certainly be hurt greatly by such a surcharge or excise tax.
What we all can find common ground on is we can't just keep on going as we have been. Oil was trading Tuesday at an astronomical $108 a barrel after earlier surpassing $109.
The national average for a gallon of gas is now at $3.24 and in California it is $3.58 per gallon! .
Not one new refinery has been built in America since the 1970s, so we can't do much about the supply side of the equation. What we can control is demand, and we can do that via greater fuel efficiency, conservation and increased transit alternatives.
Here are a few suggestions.
Mileage standards: The biggest broad stroke solution that we can effect as a country to loosen the chains that have us bound to Big Oil would be to substantially boost the minimum required mileage for new vehicles. The last increase was four years ago and it set the bar that new cars were required to get an average of 27.5 mpg and light trucks including SUVs 20.7 mpg.
Towards the end of 2007, Congress enacted the first major overhaul of so-called corporate average fuel economy, or CAFE, standards in more than 30 years. Automakers will now be required to raise average mileage for both cars and light trucks to 35 mpg by 2020.
That's good, but not nearly good enough. I say it should be set at fifty miles per gallon and no lower by 2020.
Sure, automakers will whine that this is an unreasonable goal or that it would make their products too expensive for most consumers, but that's bull. The Union of Concerned Scientists tells us that with the existing technology, cars would be raised up to 40 MPG minimum without have any significant impact on prices. And, besides, thee and me both know that they have those computer sensors on cars made after 1995 rigged so that cars can only get so much MPG. They just need to unhack them!
More than likely the Japanese and South Koreans are all set and ready to meet whatever requirements that we set for them.
Lower speed limits: It is a known fact that above the mid 50s MPH, the consumption of gas rises dramatically. That's just waste.
Telecommuting: To get people off the roads in L.A. and elsewhere and thus ease the pain of runaway gas prices, businesses should be given tax breaks for encouraging and enabling employees to work from home.
As spread out and sprawling as Los Angeles is, for example, any business that opens offices in different parts of the city should be given tax breaks. This would lessen congestion and waste of fuel and also help the commercial real estate market
So these are just a few ideas out of many. No shortage of ideas exists, this is for sure. Some of them national, some of them local. Some of the ideas are brilliant, some of them ware workable and some of them uh... neeed more work!
So what do you do if you want to lower your gas usage?
Here is the best that I know of...
WATER4GAS is providing information at a low price which individuals can use in their garage or wherever to create a small gizmo which infuses hydrogen into the gas/air mixture that their car runs on.
What this does is make smaller particles out of the ones that the system uses as fuel. Because of the smaller size the system gets to use much more of the gasoline.
With WATER4GAS you can reasonably expect to lower your gas usage by 12%. In reality though many are obtaining thirty to fifty percent improvement or significantly more. Those goblets "musta" been pretty darn big in some systems before. But with W4G they are made consumable so you can lower your gas usage.
It also helps make emissions substantially cleaner.
This package of info has been purchased by over NINE THOUSAND individuals already and the percentage of happy customers is about 99%! So that's a start!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Wind Power as a Viable Solution to Alternative Energy Needs

By: Warren Peters

Although it is much less expensive to initially get hooked into the local electric company's grid than it is to set up and hook into wind turbines, in the long run one saves money by utilizing the wind for one's energy needs while also becoming more independent. Not receiving an electric bill while enjoying the advantages of the modern electrically-driven lifestyle is a wondrous feeling.

Electric bills and fuel bills are rising steadily but the cost of wind turbine energy is zero, and the cost of installing and hooking up a turbine is steadily coming down as demand rises and more commercial success is realized by various companies producing the turbines and researching technologies to make them ever more efficient.

In addition, people are moving away from the traditional electric grids and the fossil fuels for personal reasons including desire for greater independence, the desire to live remotely or rurally without having to go primitive, political concerns such as fears of terrorist strikes on oil fields or power grids, or concerns about the environment.

Again, this motivation to get away from the traditional energy sources is the same one that causes people to seek the power of the wind for their energy, giving more business opportunities to profit from wind turbine production and maintenance, which drives their costs down for the consumers.

In nearly thirty states at the time of this writing, homeowners who remain on the grid but who still choose to use wind energy (or other alternative forms) are eligible for rebates or tax breaks from the state governments that end up paying for as much as 50% of their total green energy systems costs.

In addition, there are 35 states at the time of this writing where these homeowners are allowed to sell their excess energy back to the power company under what are called net metering laws. The rates that they are being paid by the local power companies for this energy are standard retail rates in other words, the homeowners are actually profiting from their own energy production.

Some federal lawmakers are pushing to get the federal government to mandate these tax breaks and other wind power incentives in all 50 states. Japan and Germany already have national incentive programs in place. However, A lot of this is handled regionally by state law. There wouldn't really be a role for the federal government, the Energy Department's Craig Stevens says.

And as might be imagined, there are power companies who feel that it's unfair that they should have to pay retail rates to private individuals. We should [only have to] pay you the wholesale rate for ... your electricity, according to Bruce Bowen, Pacific Gas & Electric's director of regulatory policy.

However, the companies seem to be more worried about losing short term profits than about the benefits, especially in the long run, of the increased use of wind turbines or wind farms. Head of the Center for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Technologies of California V. John White points out, It's quality power that strengthens the grid.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

The Secret to Alternative Sources of Energy

By Weldon Peterson

There are two different paths that you can take when taking a plunge into the world of alternative energy. Follow the beaten path and you will need to spend thousands of dollars on a professionally installed green energy system. But, you could also take the one less traveled by. Take this path and you will learn the secret to alternative sources of energy. And for the small price of your undivided attention I am willing to reveal this secret to you. With it you will enjoy a lifetime of savings as well as a life dedicated to improving our environment.

The secret to alternative energy is making it yourself. Yes, that is correct. In order to be most successful with using alternative sources of energy you must make your own natural energy system. Now, before you dismiss this statement which I have presented to you, first let me explain in detail how easy it is to make your own natural power source.

Making your own alternative power source is incredibly simple because there are many resources that are now available in the area of DIY green energy systems. In fact, there are even alternative power guides that outline every single step if the process of building a natural power system. Just by finding a reliable green power guide you will be able to build your very own natural energy system in just two days. And in just two days you will be on your way to saving hundreds of dollars every month!

There is one small catch though. Finding a reliable DIY green energy guide can be extremely difficult as their are many garbage products out there. Believe me, I've spent hundreds of dollars trying to find just the right one. If you want to start saving hundreds of dollars every month but don't want to have to go through the hassle of finding a reliable guide then click the link below. Just by clicking the link below you will have already taken the first step in saving tons of cash every month.


Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Palm Oil BioDiesel

By: Shana Shane


Palm Oil Biodiesel is produced by a reaction of a palm oil or animal fat with an alcohol such as methanol or ethanol in the presence of a catalyst to yield mono-alkyl esters and glycerin, which is removed.

With the increase in awareness and importance attached to environmental issues such as global warming, more environment-friendly fuels are being developed as alternatives to fossil fuel. One such fuel, which has been gaining prominence in recent years, is biodiesel. Clean and renewable, biofuel has been touted as the answer to the issue of the diminishing of energy reserves.

The advantages of palm oil biodiesel, drawn from the field trials are no modification of the engines is required, good engine performance, cleaner exhaust emission and comparable fuel consumption in comparison with the petroleum diesel.

(i) Abundantly available and stable supply.
(ii) Crude Palm Oil can be broken down into many more useful fractions.
(iii) Cheaper than all oils especially Soybean Oil Did I mention, CHEAPER!
(iv) Already being used domestically
(v) Reduces our dependency on petroleum diesel
(vi) Biodegradable Eliminates harmful emissions

What is Palm Oil biodiesel?
Palm Oil Biodiesel is the name of a clean burning alternative fuel, produced from Palm Oil. Palm Oil Biodiesel contains no petroleum, but it can be blended at any level with petroleum diesel to create a biodiesel blend. It can be used in compression-ignition (diesel) engines with little or no modifications. Palm Oil Biodiesel is simple to use, biodegradable, nontoxic, and essentially free of sulfur and aromatics.

How is Palm Oil Biodiesel made?
Palm Oil Biodiesel is made through a chemical process called transesterification whereby the glycerin is separated from the Palm oil. The process leaves behind two products -- methyl esters (the chemical name for palm oil biodiesel) and glycerin (a valuable byproduct usually sold to be used in soaps and other products).

Is Palm Oil Biodiesel the same thing as raw vegetable palm oil?
No! Fuel-grade palm oil biodiesel must be produced to strict industry specifications (ASTM D6751) in order to insure proper performance. Palm Oil Biodiesel is one of the few biodiesels to have fully completed the health effects testing requirements of the 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments. Biodiesel that meets ASTM D6751 and is legally registered with the Environmental Protection Agency is a legal motor fuel for sale and distribution. Raw Palm Oil cannot meet biodiesel fuel specifications, it is not registered with the EPA, and it is not a legal motor fuel.

For entities seeking to adopt a definition of biodiesel for purposes such as federal or state statute, state or national divisions of weights and measures, or for any other purpose, the official definition consistent with other federal and state laws and Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) guidelines is as follows:

Palm Oil Biodiesel is defined as mono-alkyl esters of long chain fatty acids derived from Palm Oil vegetable oils which conform to ASTM D6751 specifications for use in diesel engines. Biodiesel refers to the pure fuel before blending with diesel fuel. Biodiesel blends are denoted as, "BXX" with "XX" representing the percentage of biodiesel contained in the blend (ie: B20 is 20% biodiesel, 80% petroleum diesel).

Why should I use palm oil biodiesel?
Palm Oil Biodiesel is better for the environment because it is made from renewable resources, i.e. Palm Oil and has lower emissions compared to petroleum diesel. It is less toxic than table salt and biodegrades as fast as sugar. Since it is made from renewable resources i.e. Palm Oil, its use decreases our dependence on foreign oil and contributes to our own economy.

Where do I get Palm oil biodiesel?
It can be purchased directly from biodiesel producers and marketers, petroleum distributors.

What is biodiesel?

Very often, a broad, general description is used to define biodiesel in a way that is easy to understand by the general public. However, when these broad descriptions are adopted by an authoritative body as a formal definition, they can include a wide range of experimental fuels that are not biodiesel. The term "biodiesel" has a specific, technical definition that has been agreed to through a painstaking process by members of industry and government which has received full approval by the American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM), the premier standard setting organization for fuels and fuel additives. That definition is used for purposes such as alternative fuel designation, EPA registration, or other regulatory purposes. Nonetheless, this specific technical definition can be confusing to the general public.

General Definition of Biodiesel:
Biodiesel is a domestic, renewable fuel for diesel engines derived from natural oils like soybean oil, palm oil and which meets the specifications of ASTM D 6751.

Clarifying language to general definition:
Biodiesel can be used in any concentration with petroleum based diesel fuel in existing diesel engines with little or no modification. Biodiesel is not the same thing as raw vegetable oil. It is produced by a chemical process which removes the glycerin from the oil.

Technical Definition for Biodiesel (ASTM D 6751) and Biodiesel Blend:
Biodiesel, n--a fuel comprised of mono-alkyl esters of long chain fatty acids derived from vegetable oils or animal fats, designated B100, and meeting the requirements of ASTM D 6751.

Biodiesel Blend, n--a blend of biodiesel fuel meeting ASTM D 6751 with petroleum-based diesel fuel, designated BXX, where XX represents the volume percentage of biodiesel fuel in the blend.

Clarifying language to technical definition:
Biodiesel, as defined in D 6751, is registered with the US EPA as a fuel and a fuel additive under Section 211(b) of the Clean Air Act.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Alternative Energy Solutions In A Time Of Power Crisis

By: Isabel Baldry

It is unofficial - but around the world many of us agree on one thing: it is very likely that there will be an energy crisis in the future. We all know energy is a big issue in the contemporary world, and we have been convinced that humanity is at a crucial crossroads in its history because we face an energy shortage. Many experts believe this problem can only be solved by the use of alternative energy solutions. By energy, I mean the fuel that drive our cars, give us electricity and enables us to enjoy modern amenities we feel so vulnerable without. Fossil fuels have been the prime source of energy for human society since the beginning of the industrial revolution. These fossil fuels have been the muscles, which have enabled us to progress and develop to such dizzying heights. We face a problem in the 21st century because our stocks and reserves of these fossil fuels are running low; this news is worsened by the fact that these reserves cannot be renewed. Many governments and private agencies have started promoting Alternative Energy Solutions to overcome the looming energy crisis caused by the depletion of the non renewal's sources of energy that all fossil fuels - coal, all oil and natural gas - represent. Alternative Energy Solutions include all prime movers that can use a renewable natural resource to produce energy. This may be wind, thermal energy from the earth, and wave action in the shores and solar energy from the sun. Alternative energy resources can also include new technology like fuel cells. However the primary fuel humanity has long depended on has been oil. We now know from our own projections that the oil reserves in the world are slated to be unviable by 2050. Simply put, the world is running out of gas! In addition, not to mention, time. The utilization of other forms of energy is therefore very important. When we speak of alternative energy, it usually means the production of electricity via the use of some natural and renewable resource. What are these renewables, one may ask. Someone else may extend this line of questioning and say: Are these renewable resources as efficient as the fossil fuels? Below are some answers. Wind energy is the word that comes to mind whenever people talk of renewable energy sources. Humans have harnessed the wind to drive machines since medieval times. In the 21st century we use wind turbines to produce electricity. As a source of power, wind is an excellent option. Wind turbines generate electricity by rotary motion that is caused by the airflow. Some of the negatives associated with wind energy and wind turbines lie in the unpredictability of wind. For example, no wind means the turbine does not rotate and electricity is not generated. Sites are another problem; rows and rows of wind turbines are just not feasible in a city of a few million people. The most important issue however lies in cost effectiveness, most power companies are still reluctant to invest in or buy their power from companies that use wind turbines. This is changing as governments around the world have started subsidizing power generation through alternative sources like wind. There are other possible sources of renewable energy; tidal energy uses the energy of the ocean and is an effective though rather geographically limited source of power, thermal energy from the earth taps geysers and other underground sources of heat. This is a very important source of energy in places like Iceland - it is also geographically limited in its suitability. Nuclear energy can be considered a potentially inexhaustible source of power. However, it could have many dangerous complications and most environmentalists fear its use. New technological innovations like fuel cells are still a long way off from truly becoming substitutes to the fossil fuel powered internal combustion engines that have driven us all this far down the road. Indeed looking at all the possible sources of alternate energy and especially renewable, wind and hydroelectric projects are the only two viable long term sources, solar power is a potentially huge alternative source of energy but it has a technological handicap-we do not posses the engineering expertise to make better solar cells. Solar cells are also very costly to produce and are not cost effective - even less so than wind. Given all the setbacks we currently are unable to overcome, it will still be some time yet before we can throw away the polluting but efficient, fossil fuel guzzling machines that we so fondly know as cars. The use of alternative energy sources is a very important area of research and demands humanity's attention. As soon as fuel supplies run out on us, we may have to go back to that ultimate transport machine to take us places: our legs.

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