Category Archives for "Clean Energy"

The Basics of Off-Grid Solar

off-grid-solar-cabin

Have you ever considered the freedom and independence of off-grid solar?

Many homeowners see going off-grid with no connection to the utility and the ability to power your own life, as quite romantic.

But what does it really take to go off grid? What does an off-grid solar installation really look like? For most homeowners who are already comfortably connected to their utility and have reliable, fairly cheap electricity, what would the sense be in going off-grid?Continue reading

Smart Street Lights: More than Just a Pretty Glow

smart streetlight

On the road, the concept of ‘smart street light’ probably doesn’t jump to mind for most of us.

But in the last 5 years, as the boring street light has gotten a smart facelift, that’s exactly what’s been going on.

You might be saying to yourself “Streetlights? They just light our streets at night! What else is there?” Smart street lights – which use bright white LEDs – provide light, of course, but they are much more than that. They’ve got motion sensors, they reduce energy usage and therefore emissions, and they send data back to the utility and city about their energy usage.Continue reading

Solar Energy vs Coal: A Comprehensive Comparison

solar energy vs coal

How does solar energy stack up vs coal for electricity generation?

In 2015, the United States used about 3,724,500 million kWh of electricity.

Most of us don’t have enough context to realize how big this number actually is, so here are some facts: First off, the US is the 2nd biggest user of electricity in the world (just behind Canada). Secondly, think about what exactly this number includes: all the electricity used in millions of homes across the US for air conditioning, lights, refrigerators, stoves, hot water, and all our devices, as well as factories, office buildings, data centers, agricultural applications, government offices, recreation centers, football fields, streetlights, and about a billion other things we don’t even think about on a daily basis.

With so much electricity being used and created every day, as a country we need to constantly assess if all this electricity is being created in the most responsible way, both monetarily and environmentally.Continue reading

Solar Panels For Sale: A Third-World Perspective

If you live in a developed country, installing solar panels on your rooftop involves selecting a solar power company from a growing list of providers and setting up an appointment.

But this is far from the case for third-world countries.

Even if you’re only researching the theoretical principles of solar energy, it’s hard not to come across an ad shouting Solar Panels for Sale! when scouring the Internet, along with statistics and facts on how much solar energy can save you in the long run.

For instance, pulling up directories that list solar companies in each U.S. state is as easy as saying 1-2-3. Americans are offered tax reduction incentives, on top of getting closer to their goal of saving money and slashing their electricity bills.

To boot, even the environmentally conscious individual can feel good about purchasing and installing solar panels, knowing he is contributing, even minimally, to the reduction of carbon dioxide emission into the atmosphere.

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Bionic Leaf 2.0 Turns Sunlight Into Liquid Fuel

bionic leaf

Bionic leaf that produces liquid fuel from carbon dioxide: Harvard scientists have surpassed the efficiency of photosynthesis 

Today, solar energy allows us to harness electricity from photovoltaic cells in a process that yields hydrogen and stores it in fuel cells. But scientists have so far failed to use this method to produce practical fuel that can be used for power. But it now appears that this may no longer be the case.

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How Do Solar Panels Work?

how do solar panels work

How do solar panels work and how do solar panels actually create power? How does sunlight allow us to create power?

Once upon a time, in a land and time far far away (just about 2,700 years ago), lived a poor a little ant. Little did it know its life would soon come to an end by a curious child (or even perhaps a dumbfounded philosopher), armed with malicious/scientifically designed magnifying glass.

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A World First: Pakistan’s Parliament Goes Solar

Pakistan parliament building

Pakistan’s Parliament House just became the first in the world to run on 100% solar power.

The Parliament of Pakistan, officially called the Majlis-e-Shoora, meets in the Parliament House in the nation’s capital of Islamabad. The building, which houses both their Senate and National Assembly, has moved off the local power grid thanks to the solar panels that now supply it with reliable clean energy.

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Photovoltaic Effect: A historical overview

photovoltaic effect

The photovoltaic effect turns light into electricity, instantly, as if by magic. There is no machinery, no power block, no turbines, unlike all other techniques for creating electricity.

This magic happens within a sheet of material that looks to the naked eye just as inert as any other material object.

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China’s Clean Energy Switch Already Slowing Climate Change

Tangshanpeng Wind Farm

What China is doing about energy is already having a measurable effect on global greenhouse gas emissions.

In 2015, the first evidence of the Beijing government’s determination to reduce carbon emissions  may have been seen globally, as it continued an unprecedented increase in carbon-free energy substitutions and cut coal use by a full third in just a year.

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