Obama’s going green

1 02 2009

Hey everyone! Sorry it has been so ridiculously long since I have updated this blog, but here is some food for thought:

From Reuters News on January 30th:

U.S. President Barack Obama‘s energy plan calls for increasing consumption of alternative fuels and decreasing reliance on oil.

Analysts say that with oil prices now sharply off record highs above $147 a barrel hit in July, during the presidential campaign, the government may have to provide stronger subsidies to encourage private-sector investment in greener energy.

Following is a list of some of Obama’s energy proposals:

• Create 5 million new jobs by investing $150 billion over the next 10 years to catalyze private efforts to build a clean energy future.

• Save more oil than the United States currently imports from the Middle East and Venezuela combined within 10 years.

• Put 1 million hybrid cars that can get up to 150 miles per gallon on the road by 2015.

• Ensure 10 percent of U.S. electricity comes from renewable sources by 2012, and 25 percent by 2025.

• Implement an economy-wide cap-and-trade program to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 80 percent by 2050.

• Increase fuel economy standards and energy efficiency.

• Create a new $7,000 tax credit for purchasing advanced vehicles.

• Weatherize 1 million homes annually.

Source: http://www.reuters.com/article/GCA-BusinessofGreen/idUSTRE50T4V420090130

I for one am very excited about the fresh perspective that has now entered the White House. It’s well overdue to see a president who views the sucess of our economy and the state of our environment as dependent entities. Although, of the proposals listed above, I do have to admit that I am disappointed to see him implementing a cap and trade system. Honestly, I really don’t believe that it will help improve environmental standards. Companies with low environmental standards will keep on polluting by covering it up with bought credits from companies that are working towards greener business practices. It will only widen the gap between green companies and polluting companies. Maybe I fail to see the incentive for businesses to increase their environmental standards in the plan, or maybe my skepticism of the cap and trade system is founded.

As always, this post is meant to facilitate discussion. Please feel free to enlighten us with your perspective 🙂

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Wind energy from the Ocean

17 07 2008

http://blogs.reuters.com/environment/2008/07/10/a-green-energy-solution-thats-out-of-this-world/

Scientists from NASA are now beginning to serious look to the ocean as a potential source of wind energy.





53 East Tips to Use Less Water

11 06 2008

Fantastic blog post by Ecotrekker on how to use less water. Check it out!

Click here





Learn how to refill your Brita filter without buying another Brita filter!

9 06 2008

We all know that buying Brita filters to replace old ones can be expensive, but here is a site that gives you advice on a home-made replacement.

click here





Ways to save energy when doing laundry

9 06 2008

In inspiration from my previous post, here are some easy ways for you to save energy, save money, and also help save the environment…

1. Wash your clothes in cold water

2. Use biodegradable detergents

3. Try to avoid doing small loads of laundry, or washing one item. Be efficient and use the full capacity of your washing machine each time you use it.

Tips for drying:

1. Avoid using your dryer as much as possible! Hang out your clothes to dry on either a laundry line or on a laundry rack.

Why do this? Well first, dryers use an incredible amount of energy, so you will be decreasing your energy used and your household energy bill. Second, air drying your clothes will actually cause them to last longer. You know all that lint that collects in your dryer? That’s your clothing being slowly worn away at! So if you want to save some money by not having to buy new clothes and make your favorite items last longer, air dry!

But what about socks and underwear? Okay, I can understand that some may feel like there are some items that just need to be done in a dryer because it would be weird to having on a laundry line outside for the neighbors to view. If you feel this way, go ahead and dry them, but try to make sure you efficiently use it. Let me clarify. Do you usually run the dryer for your whites and then later for your darks? Because you will be using less space in your dryer because of air drying, don’t run your dryer until you’ve done all your load of laundry and combine them all those pieces you don’t want to air dry in one dryer load.





Props to the UK

9 06 2008

It is my great pleasure to be able to say that the UK is developing a waterless washing machine. From Reuters:

A washing machine using as little as a cup of water for each washing cycle could go on sale to environmentally conscious Britons next year.

Xeros Ltd, which has been spun out of the University of Leeds to commercialize the technology, said on Monday the new machines would use less than 2 percent of the water and energy of a conventional washing machine.

Plastic chips are used to remove dirt and stains from clothes, leaving them dry and reducing energy consumption as there is no need to use a dryer after the washing cycle, Xeros said in a statement.

The firm, which recently secured investment of almost 500,000 pounds ($984,400) from IP Group Plc, told Reuters the price of the new machines was “not expected to be dramatically different from (conventional) washing machines.”

Washing machine usage has risen by 23 percent in the past 15 years. The average UK household uses almost 21 liters of water daily on clothes washing, 13 percent of daily household water consumption, according to Waterwise, a non-government organization focused on decreasing water wastage in Britain.

A typical washing machine uses about 35 kilograms of water for every kilogram of clothes, in addition to the power needed to heat the water and dry the clothes

There are more than two million washing machines sold in Britain annually, with a value of about 1 billion pounds, Xeros said. 1.

1. “UK to give waterless washing machine a spin.” Reuters. 9 June 2008. 9 June 2008 <http://www.reuters.com/article/environmentNews/idUSL0967346220080609&gt;.





Sad day for the US climate bill

8 06 2008

Unfortunately, the US climate bill failed to make it through the senate.

For the full article I read http://www.reuters.com/article/environmentNews/idUSWAT00961120080606?sp=true

BTW- As a side note, I’m sorry for the overload of news articles for you to read; today I’ve been particularly interested in the Environment section of the newspaper.