Tag Archives: Energy

Top Energy Statistics from 2012

Wrap up 2012 with the top energy statistics from the year. It was a big year for energy efficiency with the ban of T12 fluorescent lights, the rise of natural gas, and the steady adoption of renewable energy.

So here’s a quick list of some of the top statistics of 2012:

  • 96% increase in electricity generation capacity from natural-gas power plants in the U.S. between 2000 and 2012
  • In 2017, the U.S. will become the world’s largest oil producer
  • 56.2% of energy is wasted by the U.S. economy each year
  • 2012 was the warmest years ever recorded in the contiguous United States
  • The average fuel efficiency of new cars sold in the U.S. during the first half of 2012 was 23.8 miles per gallon

Statistics are provided by Clean Technica

Will Natural Gas Overcome Solar?

The Worldwide Energy car is powered by clean natural gas. If you see it driving around Kansas City, be sure to wave.

Is natural gas poised to overtake solar as the latest, most efficient renewable? That’s the question that some analysts are asking especially since natural gas is becoming increasingly inexpensive and abundant.

“The price of natural gas is at a 10-year low, and is roughly half of what it was this time last year due largely to technological advances.”

In a recent New York Times op-ed, analyst Thomas Friedman expressed concern “that the shale gas boom will significantly defer the transition to solar and other renewables.”

Friedman says, “We are in the midst of a natural gas revolution in America that is a potential game changer for the economy, environment and our national security – if we do it right.”

While natural gas is a fossil fuel, it emits only half as much greenhouse gas as coal, and it is inexpensive to deploy. But is it enough to overcome other renewable sources of energy?

We like to think that there’s room for all types of renewable energy sources including solar, natural gas, and wind. What’s more important is the application of these sources, and where would they fit best.

For example, solar is ideal for a business in Arizona, and wind is great for a production facility in Kansas. There’s room for all types of renewable energy, especially if reducing utility costs, and improving the environment are the end goals.

Source: AOL Energy

EPA Energy Efficiency Competition

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Energy Star program launched its annual National Building Competition: the Battle of the Buildings. A record 3,200 buildings from around the country go head to head to improve energy efficiency, and found out who can be the biggest energy loser this year.

“Commercial buildings in the U.S. are responsible for about 20 percent of the nation’s energy use and greenhouse gas emissions at a cost of more than $100 billion annually in energy bills,” according to the EPA.

“By improving the energy efficiency of commercial buildings, such as schools, offices, hospitals and retail stores, competitors will reduce energy waste and save on utility bills while protecting the environment and people’s health.”

When the competition first started in 2010, there were 14 buildings who signed up; which jumped to 245 in 2011, to more than 3,200 this year. The numbers say a lot about how businesses are really looking to the benefits of energy efficiency, including lower utility bills.

The competitors have a year to measure and track their buildings’ monthly energy consumption, and the winner will be announced April 2013.

Source: Energy Star

A map of the 3,200 companies who are participating in this year’s EPA National Building Competition: Battle of the Buildings.

Corporate Sustainability in Ten Steps

Corporate sustainability is not for the weak of heart. In fact, making the switch to energy efficiency does take a certain amount of commitment to the project and its future benefits. But, that doesn’t mean it’s not possible.

Here is a simple, straightforward and effective approach, developed by Yudelson Associates, to create corporate sustainability in your business.

1. Setting the Vision: where do you want sustainability to take your company?

2. The Task Force: develop a group that will work to make that vision happen.

3. Examining Green Options: what should your company do?

4. Adopting Sustainability Initiatives: make choices and move forward.

5. Staffing the Green Initiative: who’s going to do the work? Often, someone needs to be hired.

6. Internal Education and Training: a commitment to educating and training the staff is key.

7. Green Building: long-term sustainability can be dependent on your building, and should be reworked so that green becomes the norm.

8. Green Operations: the property management side can include negotiating recycling contracts, investments on property, and conducting a host of other activities.

9. Communications: effective communication is key in telling the story of your green initiatives.

10. Continuous Improvement: “ongoing corporate sustainability is about continuous improvement, using environmental and energy metrics.”

Corporate sustainability is a long-term commitment. And while there is plenty of work involved, with the right vision, projects, and partners any company can appreciate the rewards and benefits.

Energy Efficiency is in our Future

A new study from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) found that increased energy efficiency will contribute to a slowing of the annual growth rate of U.S. energy consumption for the next 20 years (which averages out to about 0.3 percent annually).

The report laid out 30 different cases of how U.S. energy consumption will change through 2035. The most likely scenario references how energy generated by grow between 10-15 percent during that time.

More importantly, the report cited existing federal and state energy requirements and incentives as playing a continuing role in more efficient technologies. Further reductions could happen with the help of new federal and state policies as well.

If the report is accurate, more and more businesses and commercial building owners will benefit from the change. Our list of clients are already seeing savings on their lighting upgrades, see if your business is qualified by scheduling a facility review today.

The complete report can be read online.

Source: U.S. Energy Information Administration

Feature Client – Lukas Liquor

Each month, Worldwide Energy features a client that we have worked with to showcase not only our portfolio, but also our client’s business.

Project Scope:

Lukas Liquor had several goals in mind when upgrading their lighting fixtures. They wanted to increase utility and maintenance savings while creating the right light for certain areas, specifically the retail store and wine bar. The retail store had 20’ high ceilings that needed bright lighting illuminations, and softer mood lighting for the wine bar area. Because the store remained open 12 hours per day, the Worldwide Energy crew worked overnight to replace (73) 400w metal halides with T8 wide-body reflector fixtures.

Lighting Upgrade Savings:

  • 74,097,920 kWh
  • Cut demand usage in half
  • Estimated annual savings of $5,927
  • Reduced 156,450 pounds of carbon dioxide
  • Equivalent to annual greenhouse emissions from 14 vehicles

Lukas Liquor

Lukas Liquor Superstore is the “Midwest’s largest merchant of fine wines, spirits, and malt beverages.” It has three stores including one in Overland Park and St. Louis. The superstore in Kansas City, MO features a large retail space, as well as a wine bar.

Click here to visit the Lukas Liquor website.

Market for Energy Retrofits Grow

Retrofitting buildings

A recent Pike Research report examined the global market landscape for energy efficiency retrofits in commercial and public buildings. It found that the global market will expand from $80.3 billion in 2011 to $151.8 billion by 2020.

This makes sense because more and more businesses are looking to cost-effective ways to reduce its operating expenses, and retrofitting existing buildings with updated lighting and HVAC is a great way for businesses to reduce operating expenses. And lighting retrofits typically see a quick return on investment.

Aside from reducing operational costs and energy consumption, business owners are motivated to retrofit their buildings in order to reduce greenhouse gases, carbon footprints, and gain a competitive edge in the building market. Let Worldwide Energy help your business s jump into energy efficient technology by scheduling a facility review.

Read the full report.

Source: Pike Research

Smithsonian Museum Upgrades to LED

Following the Department of Energy report on LED, the Smithsonian is getting in on the action as well. The historic museum recently retrofitted more LED lamps in their gallery, reducing their electricity costs from $2984 to $816 per year.

The Smithsonian’s “incandescent lamps could not be replaced one-for-one, but the variety of LED lamps available offered new opportunities to tailor the lighting effects.” The museum was able to achieve the color and composition light needed to display artwork, as well as saving on energy costs.

Has your business looked into upgrading to more energy efficient lighting? What were some instant benefits? What are some long-term benefits?

Source: LEDs Magazine

And the Winner is… LED!

According to a Department of Energy report, LED lamps have an environmental edge over compact fluorescent lamps, and create a significantly lower environmental impact than incandescent lighting over the lifetime of the products.

The study is just a part of a DOE project to assess the life-cycle costs of LED lighting products. It found that the energy LED lights consume during operation makes up the majority of their environmental impact, specifically not during the manufacturing and transportation process.

Has your business made the switch to LED?

Read the complete study here.

Source: Environmental Leader

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