Not only does the use of alternative energy promote a healthier environment, the reduction in traditional energy consumption truly adds up in savings over time, which is a selling point for builders and a real advantage to consumers.

Alternative Energy - An Environmentally Friendly Solution for Reducing Energy Costs

Sascha Deri | Alternative Energy Store

Alternative Energy - An Environm
Not only does the use of alternative energy promote a healthier environment, the reduction in traditional energy consumption truly adds up in savings over time, which is a selling point for builders and a real advantage to consumers.
Alternative Energy
An Environmentally Friendly Solution for Reducing Energy Costs
By Sascha Deri, President

During President Bush's recent remarks on Energy Policy, the President recognized that the U.S. needs a comprehensive national energy policy that promotes conservation and efficiency in order to meet energy needs in the 21st century.

A key component of his discussion was that of technologies, potentially supported by the Department of Energy, that would improve energy conservation, from fuel-efficient hybrid vehicles to products such as water heaters that convert heat from the air into energy. In essence, the President discussed how Americans need to commit to energy conservation and the utilization of domestic alternative energy sources.

Alternative energy sources that are safe, clean and environmentally friendly sources of energy, namely wind and solar energy, were mentioned as something for which Congress should provide tax credits. So much more can be done within the U.S. to promote the use of natural alternative energy sources, which will not only conserve environment but potentially save millions to billions of dollars over the long term.

Builders, architects and consumers need to start thinking of the "big picture" and move beyond conventional energy methods.

It certainly pays to make use of alternative energy sources. The unpredictability of the current energy market, with instability in fuel oil and natural gas prices along with the high cost of electricity, is just cause to take significant steps in the use of renewable energy that will help relieve some of the financial burden of high energy costs and reduce our country's reliance on foreign sources of energy.

While the use of solar energy may seem like "hype" to many in U.S., Europeans have long recognized the need for it. In fact, government regulations in Spain require solar energy to be used in most new construction. Solar electric panels, predominant in Europe, in particular Germany and Spain, are now being installed to replace aging nuclear power plants and augment power production for the future.

There are extremely effective alternative sources of energy that we could be using in instead of or in conjunction with traditional energy sources to increase conservation and reduce the cost of traditional energy. Right now, a New England homeowner's fuel heating consumption over a one-year period is the equivalent of flying round-trip to London at least eight times. If builders installed just one solar air heating panel in new construction or renovation, the homeowner could conserve up to one-third of their heating fuel, or about the energy needed for over two trips to London.

Scaling down the U.S. energy consumption to that of homeowners, here are a few examples of how builders can use solar and wind energy sources to reduce energy consumption and cost in new construction or renovation:

  • Solar electric panels on the roof or on the ground (preferably situated to receive six hours of sun light per day) are an ideal way to take advantage of the sun's energy and reduce electric bills. If the consumer thinks solar panels on the roof are unsightly, then they may opt to install solar shingles, which are visually similar to normal roofing shingles.
     
  • Reduce heating bills with a solar air heating system. One of the few solar air heating systems designed for residential use available in North America is the Solar Max system. The Solar Max is mounted on a south facing wall or on the roof to circulate air from inside your home through its highly efficient solar heat collector. Overall fuel cost savings range from 25 to 50 percent depending upon current fuel source and the amount of sunlight received at the location. A solar air heating system has a very short payback period (three to six years for most homeowners) and after that, the heat that it produces is essentially free throughout the 15 to 25 year expected lifetime of the product.
     
  • If the home is at least one mile away from the electric utility line, then installation of a solar or wind electric system would enable the homeowner to have their own (free and independent) source of power. The electric company will charge between $35,000 to $50,000 to run that one-mile length of cabling, whereas a solar or wind electric system is much a more affordable and cost effective investment.

It's not touted, but the purchase of renewable energy systems, such as those mentioned above, are a tax write-off for homeowners in many states. There have been important new changes in many states' renewable energy policies. For example, the Massachusetts' Small Renewables Initiative has recently changed its policy to include more rebates for new construction, renovations and retrofits. The Massachusetts Technology Collaborative provides $5 million in funding so Massachusetts homeowners, farmers, businesses, schools and public facilities can use wind energy to generate their own clean power and reduce electric bills.

The Alternative Energy Store offers a variety of solar and wind energy products that enable builders, architects and consumers to take advantage of renewable energy rebates and incentives. Not only does the use of alternative energy promote a healthier environment, the reduction in traditional energy consumption truly adds up in savings over time, which is a selling point for builders and a real advantage to consumers.

Sascha Deri is president of the Worcester, Mass. based Alternative Energy Store, LLC. Committed to benefiting societies and the environment, the Alternative Energy Store is dedicated to educating consumers and providing the best selection of solar, wind, micro-hydro and other alternative energy products worldwide. For more information visit their website at www.AltEnergyStore.com or contact Toll Free (800) 320-9514.)

 

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