Wind Energy Guide

Renewable Energies in Building:
Let Wind Power WORK for You

Energy efficiency and renewable energies in buildings cover many items including the building materials, building architecture, heating, cooling, lighting, ventilation and appliances like refrigerators, dish washers, etc. Studies have shown that buildings in the US currently consume 36% of the countryís energy supply at a cost of $193 billion which is as much as the combined sales value of General Motors and Exxon (1993 base year). And it is growing at a steady rate of 3.3% per year. Moreover, the fossil fuel that is used to generate electricity for commercial building account for a little above 15% CO≤ emission while for residential buildings it is around 19%.

Renewable Energies In Building

However, the concept of renewable energies in building has brought a sea change to the earlier perception. Passive solar buildings are now being built in the US which saves as much as 50% on heating bills at a mere 1% rise in the construction cost. Typical buildings that use the sun all through the day, exploit efficient technologies and the environment to provide for their heating, cooling and illumination needs. And the best news is, they are sure to save energy cost by as much as 75%. The most amazing part of the whole story is that they do not cost any more than conventional structures. Then there are innovative technological products that help reduce costs like low-emissivity (low-E) windows, energy-efficient clothes washers, dishwashers and driers, compact fluorescent lights, freezers and refrigerators and many more.

Even energy efficient building materials have revolutionized the market today. Poorly insulated windows can account for at least 25% of heating and cooling requirements in the US at a cost of $22 billion, which in terms of money value is more than the annual sale of Shell Oil Company  (1993 base year) and equivalent to the amount of energy flowing through the Alaskan pipeline every year. However, the newly formed insulating foams can change the picture overnight. Although they do not use chlorofluorocarbon blowing agents or materials any more, and yet they have the same superior thermal as well as physical characteristics that they can easily replace.

Renewable energy structures have also altered the average heating and cooling scenario in most US building structures. These equipments consume around 42% of total building energy at a cost of $81 billion which is nearly twice the money value of Chrysler Corporationís annual sale (1993 base year). However, a transpired solar collector in the shape of a dark perforated metal wall can convert up to 80% of the sunlight hitting it into heated ventilation air for commercial buildings. With residential buildings, Natural Gas Absorption heat pumps can improve heating efficiency up to and above 50%.

Energy efficiency has also worked wonders in the field of lighting and appliances in the United States. Did you know that compact fluorescent lamps consume 75% to 85% less electricity than what the conventional ones do, lasting much longer than their incandescent cousins. Today, energy efficiency standards for refrigerator-freezers, clothes washers and driers, dishwashers and similar user-friendly appliances are saving around 20 quadrillion BTU (equivalent to 24% of the nationís energy use in 1992) of energy for the next few years till 2015.

And lastly, building materials typically considered for renewable energy buildings include rapidly renewable plant materials like bamboo (because bamboo grow up quickly) and straw, lumber from forests certified to be managed in a sustainable manner, recycled stone, recycled metal, and other products that are non-toxic, reusable, renewable, and/or recyclable like sheep wool, panels made from paper flakes, compressed earth block, adobe, baked earth, rammed earth, clay, vermiculite, flax linen, sisal, seagrass, cork, expanded clay grains, coconut, wood fiber plates, calcium and sand stone.

Wind power is a safe and clean energy and this has started to transform the world. There are tremendous financial as well as ecological advantages and these benefits cannot be ignored anymore. You can get cheap wind power at home by installing a system, but for that, you need to know where to set it up and how to do is, how to wire the system, where to get the parts from and also the safety precautions. Here is a manual that gives you all this information.

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