Saturday, April 12, 2008

Catastrophe or Normality

By Riley Ruse
Is Global Warming real or not isn't as great a question as what's happening to our planet. Check this out to learn more (CNN).

Green Fact

By Riley Ruse

Lutron, a energy saving company, produces equiptment and electronics that save as much energy as 2 million houshoulds produce.

Friday, April 11, 2008

The Question

by Vinny

There has been a debate for a while that instead of turning off the lights when you leave a room, keep them on constantly to save the energy it takes to turn them on and off. Sometime last year the Mythbusters of Discovery Channel proved this wrong. What was found out is that a regular light bulb's start up energy is equivalent to having it on for around 0.5 seconds. Even with the huge lights that take a while to warm up take as much electricity as about 20 seconds of constant light. So always turn off those lights that aren't helping to save the environment, and your money.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Run Your Car On Water

By Chris

Check out this video I found about a man who improved an engine to run on water.

Comparing Fuel Costs

By Chris

Current March 08 April 07

National Average $3.343 $3.222 $2.792

State Average $3.295 $3.090 $2.753

Denver $3.244 $3.028 $2.679

Grand Junction $3.334 $3.138 $2.895

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

U.S.A to Build New Nuclear Power Plants

by Vinny

The United States is going to build its' first nuclear power plant since the accident at 3 Mile Island. I don't know why we haven't built any more new ones since they are clean, and very safe if done the right way. No one died in the 3 Mile Island accident and it did nothing to the environment. There are getting to be fewer and fewer skeptics of this form of energy, so hopefully it will meet little opposition. For more information, click here.

Analyzinf coal-bed methane's effects on water

By: Garrett

Federal officials are studying the effects of the Rocky Mountain Region's energy boom on water. A meeting of National Academy of Sciences, and federal regulators met Sunday to review the effects of coal-bed methane drilling on the surface and groundwater. The BLM asked the National Research Council of The National Academy of Sciences to review information about coal-bed methane's effect on water. The study will focus on coal-bed methane in Montana, Wyoming, Colorado, North Dakota, and Utah.

Climate Change to Violent Conflict

By Clarissa

An article was written about the effects of out-migration of people who have been struck with natural disasters and the effect it has on the towns that these victims move to. A question was raised on that very issue: "Can the arrival of in-migrates that left their homes due to enviormental issues create conflict between the natives of that area and the in-migrates?" This topic was discussed by Professer Rafael Reuveny at the Indiana University School of Public and Enviormental Affairs. In a brief summary this is what his article said:

This question has been studied in about 40 cases. It has shown in some of these cases that out-migration has had some conflict. But the issue is larger than just this. If environmental issues create conflict, then climate change might, too. A good example is that if climate change progresses many people could leave the shores of China. China might then demand compensation from the U.S. because the U.S. has been the leading driver or climate change and its per capita contibution to the problem has been higher than China's. This could lead to war between China and the U.S."

For more information visit:

Bahrain World Trade Center

These three 29 m diameter turbines at the Bahrain World Trade Center are the first building integrated turbines ever invented. They are expected to provide the building 11-15% of its energy when in full operation. These three turbines will operate 50 percent of the time. Simha LitheRao, project manager, explains that the building's eliptical shape acts as airfoils that funnel and increase the wind velocity. This is great for producing more power. This building uses the breezes from the gulf coast adjacent to it. During the proceeding months, the turbines will be studied to reveal their total electricity generation potential.

Gas Prices Could Peak at $4 a Gallon

By Chris

This summer, gas prices could reach as high as $4 a gallon, says the Energy Department on Tuesday. High prices and a weak economy are expected to lower the demand of gasoline 0.4% during the peak summer driving season, the department's Energy Information and Administration said in a monthly report on petroleum supply and demand. Overall, the comsumption of petroleum will decrease 90,000 barrels a day this year. Average monthly gas prices will peak around $3.60 during June, though prices could raise much higher at times. According to AAA, oil and gas prices are 55 cents higher than a year ago. On Monday, prices set a national average record at $3.339 a gallon.

The Cowboy State

By Riley Ruse

Almost everyone has heard of the break in the ozone layer over the Antarctic due to aerosol cans. But in the last few months scientists have discovered another break in the ozone that isn't near as big but is right over the U.S. More specifically, Pinedale, Wyoming. This is not only an issue for Wyoming, but the entire nation.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Hydroelectric records set

By Landon

The world's largest tidal turbine has been constructed. Weighing 1000 tons, it has been installed in Ireland's Strangford lough. This turbine rated at 1.2 megawatts, will produce enough power to sustain 1000 local homes. Built by Marine Current Turbines, it will be the first commercial ,tidal turbine that produces power when it begins to operate later this year. This large turbine has two rotors that measure 16 meters in diameter. They will operate for 18-20 hours a day to produce clean, green energy. The turbine, which will be placed 400 meters offshore, won't effect sea life. Its rotors only turn at about a rate of 20 revolutions per minute which will provide an easy dodge for marine animals.

Bionic Power

by Vinny

There have been a number of products that have come out that extract energy from the movement of our legs. We have even mentioned one or two on this site. Well, its time to add another one to this list. Bionic Power Inc. has made a lightweight leg strap-on that can generate up to seven watts, or enough to power 14 cell phones! It not only works on cell phones, but it also can charge a number of other plug in portable devices. For more information, go here.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Walmart's Energy Initiative

WalMart has introduced new commercials saying that they help the energy crisis by having people buy energy efficient light bulbs as well as other ideas. For those that think that Walmart is an evil, evil corporation, could they be doing something good? Or could they just be targeting a group of customers. That is all in the eye of the beholder.
WalMart aims to sell a hundred million energy-efficient bulbs. This doesn't make them an "environmental hero," but it does give them a little better reputation than they've had for a very long time. Not to mention, if WalMart changes their own lighting that will make a huge change. They have over stores 1,000 nationwide. So, maybe the "big bad business" isn't so bad.

NREL's Solar Panel Development

By Chris

Check out this video on the National Renwable Energy Labrotory's (located in Golden, Colorado) developement in thinner, cheaper solar panels.

Chevron Wells in De Beque

By Chris

Currently, Chevron has 39 natural gas wells on its 40,000 acres north of De Beque, Colorado. During the next 15-20 years, the company may drastically increase their number of wells in this area to 2,000 or more. Chevron's drilling program could include about 80 company employees and 500 contractors associated with six drilling rigs, said company spokeswoman Kristi Pollard. Those wells would likely continue producing another 25 or 30 years after being drilled, meaning Chevron expects to be involved with gas production th the De Beque area for the next half-century, investing som $7.3 billion over the life of the project, Pollard said.

Some positive news, is that Chevron is recongnizing the effects of its projects will have on the town, and is working to adress them. The company has donated money to the school district, which plans to double in in the next 5 years.

Why Not Solar?

Despite all the discussion about solar energy, it only generates a measly .1% of electricity in the US. Meanwhile, national demand for electricity is growing by 2% annually. Considering that solar technology has been in use for decades, why is it not more widely used?

Even though sunlight is free, fossil fuels in the US have been widely available at a very low cost. Nationally, coal produces about 50% of our electricity, with a majority of it being used for base load. That means that coal plants produce a steady stream of electricity a majority of the time. Natural gas, however, has raised drastically in price over the last 6 years. It is widely used to generate electricity during peak times, typically on warmer days when we are cranking up the air conditioning. Natural gas plants can start up quickly and come to the rescue when needed, but the cost of fuel has gotten quite high recently. Solar energy is very capable of producing peak electricity and is ideally suited for for it. Solar radiation is what causes us to need air conditioning in the first place. The utility companies have started taking notice of solar energy’s potential to generate electricity during peak demand.

Diesel Dilemmas

New research indicates that exposure to diesel exhaust may cause long-term damage to brain function. The study, conducted by "Particle and Fibre Toxicology" tracked the effects of the nanoparticles found in diesel exhaust. Earlier studies have demonstrated that the nanoparticles were capable of traveling to subjects' brains after being inhaled. This was the first research to analyze how these particles affected brain function.
Researchers put 10 volunteers in a room filled with a level of diesel exhaust on par with a busy city road. EEGs recorded the participants' brain wave functions, which revealed a “significant increase in MPF (median power frequency) in response to DE (dilute diesel exhaust) in the frontal cortex within 30 minutes of exposure.” Although more research is needed to pinpoint how this stress would manifest itself, or which functions of the brain could be impaired, early indications are that brain damage can be added to respiratory and cardiovascular disease on the list of automobile exhaust-caused illnesses.

A New Way To Save on Gas

By Chris

Delivery company UPS believes that making right turns instead of left ones will help save the environment and save money on gasoline. Apparently this strategy has worked well for the company, because by redesigning their routes to make minimal left turns UPS shaved 30 million miles off its deliveries in 2007, which saved 3 million gallons of gas. It also reduced its truck emissions by 32,000 in metric tons, which is equivalent to the emissions of 5,300 passenger cars.

What makes right hand turns so much more energy efficient? Cars and trucks aren't idling in traffic- burning fuel and releasing emissions- when they turn right as opposed to left. Turning right is also safer, because drivers don't have to face oncoming traffic.

Is Global Warming Really Happening?

By Clarissa

Is global warming really happening? Many people seem to think that humans are most responsible for the heating of the climate. Many others think that the earth is going through a heating and cooling phase. When you think about it, this "global warming" is really just a phase. Back in the 1970's everyone was scared of global cooling. Everyone thought that the next ice age was just around the corner. But, take a look at the bigger picture. People have lived on this planet for thousands of years and we are still here. Global warming and cooling haven't had that much of an effect until people started worrying about it. (For example the last 5 years.) So this "heating of the planet" MUST be a phase. Yes, I'll admit that the planet is heating up just a few degrees. But, take a look at the facts: it was predicted that this last hurricane season would be the worst one on record, yet there were not as many hurricanes, according to
In 2005 there were 28 storms (above the average of 10) and 15 of them were hurricanes. 7 of those were Category 3 or higher. In 2007 the average number of hurricanes were 15 and only six of them were hurricanes. 2 of those were Catagory 3 or higher. So the number of hurricanes has been going down from 2005 to 2007. If Global Warming was REALLY happening, then the number of hurricanes should have gone up do to the rise of temperature in the oceans. Clearly you can see that global warming is full of mistakes and isn't true.

La Rance

By Riley Ruse
Wind power, nuclear power, water power and hydrogen power are alternative energy sources we all have heard about. But scientists and engineers in France have found an interesting fuel source unlike any other. On the Rance River estuary a hydroelectric dam has been built, but instead of running like a conventional hydroelectric dam, it uses the tide. On high tide, the water surges inward through the dam, and just before low tide, they close the gates trapping the tidal waters inside. As the ocean pulls back, they open a small gap allowing the tidal water to flow through the hole and back to the ocean. There are hydroelectric generators inside the hole that catch the power of the water flowing into the ocean.


By Riley Ruse
Scientists across the world are coming together to discuss "the melt". In Antarctica the Wilkins ice shelf has been melting at speeds never seen before. The ice shelf is 5600 sq. miles; and since the beginning of February, 160 sq. miles of the shelf has melted away. Whether it's the fault of man or simply that of Earth, something must be done.


By Riley Ruse
If 10% of the world’s energy was generated by wind it would be equivalent of replacing all cars in the world with hybrids. Wind is an abundant domestic resource and is among the most cost competitive sources of low-carbon power.

Thanks to: