Posts Tagged ‘Washington D.C.’

29 January

President Obama Tauts Solar Progress in State of the Union Address Speech

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Dear Friends, Visitors/Viewers/Readers, (Please click on red links below)

Just received this press release from SEIA regarding President Obama’s annual State of Union Address speech last night:

A Sunny Day In Florida (credit: sunisthefuture-Susan Sun Nunamaker)

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Giving his own “shout out for solar,” President Obama praised the U.S. solar industry in his annual State of the Union speech. Afterward, Rhone Resch, president and CEO of the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), released the following statement:

“From the rooftop of the White House to the floor of the People’s House, President Obama continues to show his strong, unwavering support for solar energy.  On behalf of the 143,000 Americans who work in the U.S. solar industry – and the tens of millions of people who support it – the best way to thank the President for his leadership is to go out and prove him right.  Today, we’re well on our way to doing that, with solar now the fastest-growing source of renewable energy in America, pumping tens of billions of dollars into the U.S. economy.  But despite this milestone, we believe the best is yet to come.

“Fresh off a record-breaking year, America’s solar energy industry is looking forward to another great year in 2014 – thanks, in part, to President Obama’s continued leadership and the smart public policies which are making solar more affordable than ever.  With an estimated 13,000 megawatts (MW) of solar currently installed in the U.S., we’re generating enough clean, reliable electricity today to power more than 2 million American homes – or every single home in a state the size of Colorado.  Like the President, we see 2014 as a year of action, a year of progress and a year in which more and more Americans turn to solar to save money, help meet their energy needs and improve our environment.”

###

About SEIA:

Celebrating its 40th anniversary in 2014, the Solar Energy Industries Association® is the national trade association of the U.S. solar energy industry. Through advocacy and education, SEIA® is building a strong solar industry to power America. As the voice of the industry, SEIA works with its 1,000 member companies to champion the use of clean, affordable solar in America by expanding markets, removing market barriers, strengthening the industry and educating the public on the benefits of solar energy. Visit SEIA online at www.seia.org.

~have a bright and sunny day~

Gathered and posted by sunisthefuture-Susan Sun Nunamaker

Any of your comments/suggestions/questions will be welcomed at sunisthefuture@gmail.com

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27 September

Petition For Renewable Energy, Solar Decathlon Photo-Video-People’s Choice Award Contest of 2011, Editorial on Why and How We Should Power The World With Sun-Water-Wind Quickly

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Dear Readers,

For a special treat, between September 23-October 2, 2011, Sunisthefuture.net will be hosting a 10 day-3 parts series:

I.  If you are in favor of renewable,  clean, or solar energy, please sign this petition for FIT/CLEAN Program, accessible at http://sunisthefuture.net/?page_id=1065 Thank you very much. We are at a critical juncture in human history when individual effort and participation in the transition into renewable energy age is desperately needed!  Your signature will be very meaningful in helping all earthlings!  For a summary of why we need to switch to power the earth with Wind-Water-Sunlight quickly, reasons are explained by Stanford Professor Mark Z. Jacobson at  http://sunisthefuture.net/?m=20110731 There are more than sixteen episodes of discussions on FIT (Feed-In-Tariff/CLEAN Program) available at http://sunisthefuture.net Please feel free to read/listen to them (type in feed-in-tariff in the search box at right).  Keep in mind that signing this petition only means that you are in favor of renewable energy and FIT/CLEAN Program and does not obligate you to provide any financial support. We simply want our combined voice to be heard even if we are not spending millions of lobbying dollars. We want to demonstrate that our system of democracy will work for people in all socio-economic strata. So please join us in this earthly movement by signing this petition and participating in our common goal of moving toward the renewable and solar energy age. Earthlings from any corner of the globe may participate.


II. sunisthefuture.net Awards For Solar Decathlon of 2011 (this is not the contest holding by the Department of Energy);there are  three parts (you may participate in one or more than one part(s)), details and procedures explained at http://sunisthefuture.net/?page_id=1507 :

Part 1. Photo Award Part 2. Video Award Part 3.  People’s Choice Award  for Solar Decathlon Team of 2011

Now, I’d like to invite you to take a look at an example of one of the teams going through the process of implementing their design of Solar Decathlon 2011 at West Potomac Park in Washington D.C.—>

 

 


III.Editorial on Why and How We Should Power Planet Earth With Sun-Water-Wind Quickly, below:

Why and How We Should Power Planet Earth With Sun-Water-Wind Quickly

(written and published by sunisthefuture-Susan Sun Nunamaker, at sunisthefuture.net)

It is an exciting time to be alive.  We earthlings may have many problems to deal with, but we are also equipped with many tools, terrific minds, and fantastic ways of communications.  My thirst for solutions for earth’s energy problem combined with my online teaching jobs permitted me to travel to various places from time to time to search for answer…to seek lessons learned and wisdom gathered…. Yes, I’ve attended many lectures by many scholars who have studied the energy issue.

Today, I want to share with you a talk by Mark Z. Jacobson, Director of the Atmosphere/Energy Program and Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Stanford University, available at http://sunisthefuture.net, July 31, 2011 post. Professor Jacobson started the talk by explaining what the problem we earthlings are facing today and why is there such an urgency in needing to deal with it quickly:

  • temperatures are rising quickly
  • Arctic sea ice area is decreasing quickly
  • air pollution mortality is one of the leading causes of death worldwide and higher temperature contributes to deaths
  • higher population and growing energy demand will lead to worsening air pollution and climate problems over time

This part of the talk helped me to realize that black carbon (main component of the soot particles) is also a very important factor for causing global warming, in addition to CO2 emission.  Annual premature earthlings’ deaths due to particulates is about 2.5-3 million (in U.S. that is translated into 50,000-100,000 and in Europe, 300,000-350,000 annual premature deaths due to air pollution).

As any good engineer/scholar would approach a problem, Professor Jacobson did not just  alarm us with problems but also evaluated possible solutions both with and without cost considerations.  From reviewing and ranking major proposed energy-related solutions to global warming, air pollution mortality, and energy security, his talk also considered various impacts of the proposed solutions such as water supply, land use, resource availability, reliability, wildlife, and  risk of cancer and nuclear proliferation.  Some data I was not aware of in the past was presented, such as the dramatic increase of organic gases (formaldehyde, 200% and  acetaldehyde, 4500%) and increased ozone generated from using ethanol.  In the final analysis, with consideration of materials, transmission infrastructure, costs, and politics, Professor Jacobson concludes that the best way to power the world is with Wind, Water, and Solar (WWS) technologies.

By 2030, the cost of using fossil fuel (13.5c/kWh) will be higher than using WWS (8-13 c/kWh) technologies.  Using WWS technologies will also eliminate 2.5-3 million air pollution premature deaths/year and global warming and provides energy stability. Furthermore, converting to WWS and electricity/H2 will reduce global power demand by 30%.  The greatest concern regarding use of WWS is its variability;this is also addressed by Jacobson’s study by: ( 1.) interconnecting geographically-dispersed WWS;(2.) bundling WWS and using hydro to fill in gaps;(3.) demand-response (provide incentive to discourage use during peak/high demand period);(4.) oversizing peak capacity and producing hydrogen with excess for industry, vehicles;(5.)on-site storage;(6.)better forecasting.

The study concludes that the best way to power planet earth in the future is with Wind, Water, and Solar (WWS) technologies.  It is feasible both technically and economically.  Its potential barriers are up-front costs, transmission needs, lobbying, and politics.

Relevant papers can be found at http://www.stanford.edu/group/efmh/jacobson/Articles/I/susenergy2030.html.

Dear Readers, this is exactly why I have written the series on effective Feed-In-Tariff, in Sun Is The Future, available at http://sunisthefuture.net trying to urge all of our local and federal governments (not just the Floridians or residents of USA, but residents of planet earth) to give all of us the  incentive to participate  in our move toward the Renewable WWS age.  We, as individual home or business owners, may not be spending multiple millions of dollars for lobbying, but we are just as concerned with the future of energy use and welfare of our planet earth as any large utility companies.  We earthlings are all connected. The particulate matters from China or India or radiation material from Fukushima will impact all of us earthlings.  So, as  individual earthlings, let’s start by calling attention and action for our immediate communities.  I, here in Florida, will try my very best in asking my community and local government to consider effective Feed-In-Tariff (discussions, articles, and video clips available by going to the search box at upper right hand corner of http://sunisthefuture.net and type in “feed in tariff”). Effective Feed-In-Tariff, now rebranded as CLEAN program, may be utilized by individual home owners, small businesses, organizations such as schools, Y’s, hospitals, libraries, local McDonald’s, WalMart, police stations, and large power/utility companies/plant (refer to the piece I wrote on July 13, 2011, Answer For The Future Is In Hybrid Marriage-Solar And Fossil Fuel at http://sunisthefuture.net) alike.

We need incentive for individual home owners, small businesses, organizations such as schools, Y’s, hospitals, etc. with rooftops and surface areas, that would provide us with sufficient economic incentive to move into the renewable age.  Here is an example (in the video of July 27 post at http://sunisthefuture.net, with data provided by World Future Council) of another country, Germany, with far less sunshine and insolation than we have here in Florida,  but with the help of Feed-In-Tariff (key features listed below):

  • Gives RE (renewable energy) priority access to the grid
  • Obliges grid operators to purchase electricity from RES
  • Sets the price for RE electricity for fixed periods
  • Sets no limit to amount of RE feeding into the grid

Fundamentally, with an effective Feed-In-Tariff incentive program, any one who produces excess renewable energy may be able to sell the power he/she generates back to the power/utility company.

Feed-In-Tariffs have been so successful in Germany and many other countries because of the long term planning security it provides by having 12-20 year contracts ( this is crucial to investors);it gives technology-specific incentives (this is crucial for driving new technologies into the market);it adapts to technological development (this fosters innovation). Germany was able to create more than a quarter million jobs in renewable energy sector in less than five years, economic impact of new industry development with total turnover from renewable energy sources of approximately 25 billion Euros in 2007, and saved about 150 tons of CO2 emissions…all due to the help of Feed-In-Tariff. Most importantly, Feed-In-Tariff have made Germany the world leader in solar power. Another important lesson to take away from the presentation of World Future Council video clip of July 27 post in sunisthefuture.net is the fact that majority (more than 80% in Germany & or 90% in Florida) of the market share is from residential rather than the utility scaled facility (about 10%). That means, we, the individuals, will have far more combined impact on the industry and would benefit from the industry of renewable energy via Feed-In-Tariff. Please do view these discussions and video clips on Feed-In-Tariff, accessible at sunisthefuture.net, beginning from May through July of 2011, at sunisthefuture.net.

If you’d get to my May 8th post on Incentive For Solar (8)-Feed-In-Tariff (FIT), at http://sunisthefuture.net, there is a very informative discussion by a panel of scientists and policy makers and even our very own Floridian Ed Regan, you would  also see in my August 11 post that:

the first form of feed-in-tariff was actually implemented in US in 1978, under President Jimmy Carter’s administration, telling Americans that the energy crisis was a “clear and present danger to our nation” and drew out a plan to address it.

The problem with the federal mandated feed-in-tariff rate from 1978 is that: the federal government had given individual states the authority to set its own FIT rate as long as it meets the minimal level of avoided cost. So, we ended up getting a lot of states  simply setting its FIT rate at the  avoided cost (for FL, this avoided cost is much lower than the cost of producing solar energy, therefore, there is no incentive for any one trying to produce extra energy). It simply would not be economically feasible. You can also find this discussion in my June 8th post and video with Craig Lewis of Clean Coalition, at http://sunisthefuture.net I have another issue with this avoided cost FIT rate: that is,  it is set at a fixed rate without the consideration of what time in the day when the energy is produced. The value of energy  changes throughout the day because energy is in greater demand during the day time and when sun is up (esp. in FL when it is on a hot summer day, when AC is in huge demand).  The current fixed avoided cost FIT rate ends up favoring the wind energy producers and very unfavorable for the solar energy producers (solar energy is produced when demand is highest and therefore during the time when the energy is/should be more valuable.)  But this can all be modified/monitored with current technologies and smart meters.  So, what we need from the state government is an effective Feed-In-Tariff rate that would provide incentive (economically feasible) for every/any one who wants to participate in production of renewable energy (solar, water, wind, etc.) to do so feasibly.  Some of you may argue to wait until the cost of producing renewable (esp. solar in FL) energy to be much lower and continue the status quo for now. But I (and many others) feel that we cannot afford to wait any longer because it takes time to educate, implement, and assist the general public to make the transition into a new world of renewable energy.  If we want a smooth transition, without too much societal disruption, nor increased unemployment or dramatic lowering of standard of living, the most effective strategy is by implementing effective Feed-In-Tariff/CLEAN Program (as indicated in World Future Council http://www.worldfuturecouncil.org/feed_in_tariffs_in_us.html) ASAP.  We have seen how effectively implemented Feed-In-Tariff had already benefited our neighbor Gainesville, FL community (and at least 65 other nations and territories):

We would simply like to ask our state legislators to consider re-examining the issue of Feed-In-Tariff and come up with a plan for an effective Feed-In-Tariff/CLEAN Program that may be inclusive of all,  the small users, medium users, and large users (even utility companies).  For we are all in this together.  I am sure that the power/utility companies are well aware of the fact that it is much better to serve a community of economic prosperity, because 10% of a smaller number is still larger than 100% of zero, (such would be the case if/when the power company has to cater to the needs of a lot of unemployed users.)

I hope you, the readers, in addition to talking to your friends, family, neighbors, and your legislators about effective Feed-In-Tariff, I urge you to sign the petition page available at http://sunisthefuture.net and tell as many people about this web site and petition drive as possible.  To encourage you all to think positively about our renewable/solar energy future, I have also written and posted various topics at http://sunisthefuture.net for your perusal. Simply type these topics in the search box at upper right hand corner of http://sunisthefuture.net and see/hear….about….

Feed-In-Tariff

Incentive For Solar

Solar Impulse Solar Plane

Cars Of The Future

Solar High Speed Trains

Solar Shingles

Solar Hot Water Heater

What Is Solar Cell

BIPV

Why Solar

Peak Oil

Solar Decathlon

etc.

Please feel free to email me at sunisthefuture@gmail.com if you have any suggestions, questions or comments.  Any of your input will be welcomed.

Written and posted by sunisthefuture-Susan Sun Nunamaker, sunisthefuture@gmail.com

Homepage:   http://sunisthefuture.net http://sunisthefuture.com http://sunisthefuture.org


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12 September

Solar Decathlon (20)-Parson’s The New School for Design, Milano The New School for Management and Urban Policy, and Stevens Institute of Technology’s Empowerhouse Design of 2011

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Dear Readers,

If you are in favor of renewable,  clean, or solar energy, please sign this petition for FIT/CLEAN Program, accessible at http://sunisthefuture.net/?page_id=1065 Thank you very much. We are at a critical juncture in human history when individual effort and participation in the transition into renewable energy age is desperately needed!  Your signature will be very meaningful in helping all earthlings!  For a summary of why we need to switch to power the earth with Wind-Water-Sunlight quickly, reasons are explained by Stanford Professor Mark Z. Jacobson at  http://sunisthefuture.net/?m=20110731 There are more than sixteen episodes of discussions on FIT (Feed-In-Tariff/CLEAN Program) available at http://sunisthefuture.net Please feel free to read/listen to them (type in feed-in-tariff in the search box at right).  Keep in mind that signing this petition only means that you are in favor of renewable energy and FIT/CLEAN Program and does not obligate you to provide any financial support. We simply want our combined voice to be heard even if we are not spending millions of lobbying dollars. We want to demonstrate that our system of democracy will work for people in all socio-economic strata. So please join us in this earthly movement by signing this petition and participating in our common goal of moving toward the renewable and solar energy age.

Now,  we will turn our attention to a collaborative effort, the Empowerhouse, by three schools of design: Parson, Milano, and Stevens’ for a design that is both sustainable and affordable.  The Empowerhouse design was  first built  on the campus of Stevens Institute (in the Deanwood, Ward 7 District ), another house of the same design built in the lab in a controlled environment, then shipped down to Washington D.C. for Solar Decathlon.  Upon completion of Solar Decathlon, the house used for Solar Decathlon in Washington D.C.  will join the original house at the building site to become a two-family project. This house will be Washington D.C.’s first passive house (from both design and  technological view point) , definitely a historical site!  Empowerhouse is a true collaboration by people in the local community, Department of Energy,  the Habitat for Humanity, District Planning Office of Washington D.C., local A & C Commission, and students and faculty of the three schools.  The incentive for Empowerhouse is to design an affordable yet quality home for low income residents such that the energy cost for these residents will be practically  non-existent.  A project such as this is infused with collaboration from multi-directions and multi-groups of people;it is a celebration from the day of its groundbreaking. This approach to  sustainability is truly integrative, bringing about not only technological changes but also social changes. The large front porch integrates the family with community by encouraging greater interactions with neighbors and community.  As one enters the house, the entryway  frames the  view for  the garden way beyond.  One may find the mechanical closet and laundry room hidden in the entryway.  An electrical reversible heat pump system together with an energy recovery ventilator provides warm water and constant supply of fresh air throughout the house. A carefully scaled PV array, complimented by a green roof module system,  brings this house at site to net zero energy.  There is also an easily displayed monitor empowering the residents to  control their environment while monitoring their energy usage.  Water efficient low flow fixtures are installed to reduce water consumption throughout the house.  A large space with  South facing windows is well lit and is being used for kitchen and social and family interactions.  Kitchen is equipped with recycling and composting features, in addition to featured island for  entertaining. From this large window one can also see the vegetable garden and children playing in the back porch.  Planters are integrated into the house for residents to grow their own food and a rain garden collects and filters rainwater.  Placement, dimension, and shape of the windows are taking into considerations of views, daylight, and solar thermal gains. The overhang over the South porch shades during summer.  The unique sky oriented loft provides a multi-functional space (reading, playing, star gazing) while bringing natural light into the center of the home.  It is a pleasure for me to present to you this wonderful collaborative effort —>

written and posted by sunisthefuture-Susan Sun Nunamaker, sunisthefuture@gmail.com

Homepage:   http://sunisthefuture.net http://sunisthefuture.com http://sunisthefuture.org
Any comments and suggestions are welcomed at sunisthefuture@gmail.com

Please also get into the habit of checking at these sites below for more on solar energy topics:

www.sunisthefuture.net

www.youtube.com/user/sunisthefuture

www.kiva.org/team/sunisthefuture

www.facebook.com/sunisthefuture

www.pinterest.com/sunisthefuture

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