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Energy Alternatives Essay

The United States leaves a huge carbon footprint through energy use, this can be reduced by: building energy efficient homes, reducing motor vehicle use, and recycling more. Some energy related activities were the lowering energy costs in the home. People sometimes think this to be hard but here are some good steps to follow to make it seem it easier. Reset the water heater thermostat, people do not always realize that most water heaters heat water to a set temperature and then hold it there, meaning that throughout the day and night the water heater cycles on and off, just maintaining that already set temperature.

If we were to go the water heater and lower the setting a few degrees it can often save half as much energy and the chances are turning down the temperature won’t even be noticeable to most members of the family. Another way to lower energy costs in the home is with a programmable thermostat for heating the home. Just like the water heater maintains a set temperature even when it is not being used a thermostat does the exact same thing for your entire home. When we are just letting it cool off (or warm up) when there is no one awake can save energy and money as well. By letting the house cool on its own and not turning up the thermostat this can save you money.

This change will usually pay for itself in around three years. We also have attic and wall insulation where there is a difference between the indoor and outdoor temperate, the more energy this will take to maintain a temperature of comfort in our homes. By adding insulation between the indoors and the outdoors we are reducing the energy demand. This of course depends on where you live, because the savings from insulating your walls and attic could almost double the savings. This will pay back in 3 ½ years to 12 years

Then we have the replacement of the refrigerator much like our water heater a refrigerator holds a set temperature that is very different from the air that is outside of the refrigerator. So it only makes sense to have a better sea, better insulated refrigerator with better mechanical systems that would save more on energy much like the Energy Star. An Energy Star refrigerator can save up to $150 a year. Now lets the seal on your refrigerator. How you ask? Close a dollar bill in the door. If the bill drops when you close the door, you might want to consider fixing your seal or getting a fridge. This depends on the fridge and the savings you can find that this will pay for itself in 10 years- well under the average life span of the appliance, pretty neat is it not.

Water heaters and furnaces are another great savings depending on where your house is located and what the fuel is. Natural gas is generally much cheaper than electricity if it’s available in your area. The newer high efficiency gas furnaces is often worth installing, even if you have a gas furnace that is relatively new in your home. However if you live in a cold climate a new high efficiency furnace will rival or exceed air sealing for its potential savings. In warmer areas, a heat pump may be better choice than a gas furnace as your heat source for your home.

No matter what the reason or the cause we should be recycling because it has been a part of the going green for quite some time , but one company is now going a step further by actually recycling energy that has been already to power manufacturing plants. How do they do it you ask? Recycled Energy Development implements proven technologies that help capture wasted heat and increase their energy efficiency. Dick Munson, senior vice president for public affairs at RED “states that undertakes such as projects are generally able to cut their energy expenses by 20 percent .”(http://energy.gov/articles/recycles-energy-yields-super-savings)

In 2013 RED will capture its waste heat with dynamic results in terms of costs, emissions and energy savings. This project will burn no fossil fuel and emit no pollutants; it will however generate power for less than the cost of new coal-fired generation. The waste heat boilers will convert exhaust heat into steam in turn driving a power generation that will offset nearly one half of the purchased electricity used. This process will reduce carbon emissions by over 400, 00 tons a year, equivalent to Americans driving about 200 millions fewer miles each year.


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