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Found 11 results

  1. Once, the use of solar energy seemed like a distant concept of the future. Nowadays, it has become integrated into every aspect of the modern life. While eco-consciousness is expanding, the prices of solar panels are dropping, making this source of sustainable and renewable energy available to everyone. Furthermore, owing to technological advances, there are numerous innovative ways to use solar energy today. Image source: iphoneness.com Solar on the go: wearable electronics Numerous gadgets and electronic devices have become an integral part of the modern life. No one can deny the fact that they facilitate our everyday lives significantly. However, such a reliance on tech devices leads to increased power use worldwide. Fortunately, solar energy can greatly alleviate the pressure put on the environment’s finite resources. Nowadays, an increasing number of devices and gadgets are becoming solar-powered owing to innovative tech features. Solar-powered charges are easy to use, safe for the environment and versatile. Some charges can power various electronic devices, from smartphones and tablets to e-readers. Other devices are also becoming solar-powered, including smart watches, rechargeable flashlights, music speakers, etc. The warmth of the sun Owing to their eco-friendliness and profitability, solar water and space heaters are being increasingly implemented in modern homes. These solar-powered devices are generally affordable and definitely energy-saving. Solar space and water heaters harness natural light and use liquid or air to transfer it into thermal energy. Depending on whether they use natural circulation or pumps, there are passive and active solar heaters. Furthermore, a solar-based thermal energy can be used to heat up pools at a substantially lower price than regular heaters. This technology truly pays off in the long run by reducing a household’s energy use, bringing from five to ten percent return on investment. Image source: choice.com.au Solar on the roof Rooftop solar panels are still one of the most significant and effective upgrades when it comes to green technology. Energy generated by solar panels can be used to power an entire household, leaving homeowners with numerous benefits, including reduced energy use and decreased carbon footprint. In addition, innovative SMA inverters for solar panels have become an essential component, enabling homeowners to monitor and manage their systems and analyze data. Although the initial costs of installing solar panels may be a bit higher, this green upgrade is a long-term investment that can completely eliminate owners’ dependence on the grid. Solar lighting for a true shine As one of the most common uses of solar energy, solar lighting has become a standard in numerous homes. Both interior and exterior lighting can be solar-powered, with outdoor lights being extremely easy to use. Wireless exterior solar lights can be simply placed outdoors because they don’t require any installation. After harnessing sunlight throughout the days, exterior lights can shine through the night. When it comes to interior lighting, it can be connected to solar-powered systems and batteries that generate electricity during the night. Image source: elitesolarsystems.com Solar-based ventilation Ventilation systems and units are a major power consumer, both in residential and commercial buildings. They are used to maintain a pleasant temperature, reduce humidity and eliminate odours. Consequently, they require a substantial amount of energy, which affects both homeowners and the environment. Solar-powered fans, on the other hand, harness sunlight and are easy to install and maintain. Not only do they have a positive impact on the environment, but they are also a cost-effective alternative that can keep any home comfortable. Solar-powered transportation Considering the fact that transportation around the world leads to enormous greenhouse gas emissions, the use of solar energy can truly make a difference in this aspect. While the potential of this technology is still not completely utilised, it’s becoming more and more implemented around the world. Solar cars are one of the most common technologies, especially in Australia, while solar buses are working their magic in China. Recently, even a solar-powered aircraft, called Solar Impulse 2, traveled around the world and across the Pacific. It’s only a matter of time when solar-powered transportation will find a wider application on a global scale. Solar energy is a suitable and renewable source that offers numerous benefits for the modern society, its members, and the environment.
  2. Environmental concerns are still a constant in today’s society. When reading news and watching broadcasts on the subject, it’s worrying to conclude how much things have worsened in this department. While worries are not diminished, numerous people however, have started to make certain changes, in order to pursue a more environmentally friendly way of living. Because the implication of a singular individual matters, setting a positive example for those around, each person should focus more on the matter. If you have decided to become a promoter of eco-friendly lifestyle yourself, you should start by greening up your household. While certain changes might require a bit more effort from your part, others will be quite simple to implement. But what exactly are people doing lately to make their homes greener? Here are a few of the changes that come as most beneficial in 2018, which you should think about as well: Heating The highest level of energy consumption in your household (which of course impacts the environment) goes on heating. Seeking friendlier heating options is recommended when you are trying to green your household. Infrared heaters, for example, are an excellent choice in this department, offering an energy saving that can reach even 50 percent. You can however analyze all your possibilities and choose one that you think will work for your lifestyle best. Moreover, if you want to maintain the temperature of your household at an optimal level throughout the entire year, without relying solely on heating or cooling devices, or turning these systems to their maximum capacity, you should also make sure your windows are perfectly sealed and your home insulated. You would be surprised to discover how much of a difference an isolation replacement can do in terms of temperature preservation and energy bill lowering. Reinsulating your property is the type of costly project that is worth every penny, and luckily, more homeowners have started to realize this aspect, and to pursue it. Replace your light bulbs Energy efficient light bulbs have been available to homeowners for quite some time now, but despite this fact, many households are still using traditional options. Switching to LEDs that use far less electricity is one of the first changes that you should make in your household, and the easiest as well. This decision makes sense even for those who might not have a green perspective on things, considering less energy consumption means lower utility costs. Energy efficient light bulbs will also last longer, so this solution provides you only with benefits. Invest in energy efficient appliances When talking about making your home more environmentally friendly and adopting greener lifestyle routines, energy efficiency is one of the first things that probably pops in mind. While you have numerous possibilities in terms of lowering your energy consumption, considering your appliances are utilizing so much energy, replacing a few of them with alternatives that are more efficient in this department is an option worth your consideration. Taking into account the fact that you don’t exactly need to “think green” when you are getting new cutlery items and dishes, or furniture items, for example, adopting this eco-friendly purchase habits when replacing or purchasing appliances will not involve such a great effort. Since manufacturers have realized the impact they have on the environment and how much people have directed their focus on this issue, numerous brands have brought to buyers’ disposal an impressive range of energy efficient counterparts. From refrigerators and washing machines, to the common coffee maker and vacuum cleaner, almost any device you are now using in your household has an energy-efficient alterative. Moreover, this will not only be a positive decision from a green point of view, but from a financial one as well, considering you will manage lowering your bills. Check the tag of any appliance before purchasing it. Kitchen and bathroom fixtures You can adopt greener routines, when it comes to utilizing your kitchen and bathroom as well, with a few accessible and easy fixtures. Using less water is something that needs your attention when you desire to go green, and while you might not want to cut down on your showers, and thus have your comfort be affected, relying on low-flow faucets and shower heads is a great solution in this situation. Low flow fixtures of this kind are known for using far less water than their traditional counterparts, and you will end up saving gallons of water at the end of each month. Without having to give up on your regular water consumption practices, a reduction will be provided. Costs linked to water heating will be reduced, energy will be saved, water bills decreased – three major benefits that can certainly not be neglected. Also, incorporating these fixtures will be an easy and fast process. Install solar panels If you are truly committed to go even further with your environmental protection habits, the installation of solar panels is also something worth the thought. A house that can be completely characterized as green will have this feature. Solar panels will enable you to access a source of electricity that is 100 percent clean. Although the finical implication of this project might be extremely expensive for the average homeowner, and the monetary returns might be noticeable only after a decade or two, if you can afford it, and if you value eco-friendliness making the investment is, of course, advised. If you have always been an eco-friendly type of person, and you want to continue making a difference in a world where pollution and environmental degradation are becoming bigger problems with each passing day, greening up your home should be one of the things to start with. The ideas mentioned above are the ones that have been most widely used by people in 2018, and ones that you can easily pursue yourself. A few changes around your home can be all it takes to take green living to another level, so keep each one of these ideas in mind.
  3. The top 10 benefits of solar energy

    Not that there are many households that actually support solar energy, we could all use a little education on the matter. Once solar energy benefits become available, i.e. known to the broader public, the chance to actually switch to solar will be getting bigger by the second. Solar energy is one of the best ways to ensure you have plenty of energy, without investing too much or causing harm to your immediate environment. Besides being an affordable alternative, there are many more benefits you should review before upgrading your home to solar power. If you’ve been considering switching to solar energy, these are just a few facts you should be aware of: Cheap Energy Solar energy is a renewable energy source, which means you only need the sun to ensure you’ve got enough energy for your daily chores (run appliances, gadgets, etc.). Luckily, the Aussies have plenty of sunny days, which means your battery will be filled and ready at any time. Low Investments Although it might seem you have to pay a lot at once, over time, your rig will allow you to save some money. Furthermore, there’s a low payback period for those who wish to take out a loan on it. Reports from 2016 show that Australians are hooked on solar energy and aren’t afraid to upgrade. It’s a smart – AND CLEAN - investment, after all, so we totally understand the rush! Become Sustainable With a government incentive to help you get started, your home is bound to become more sustainable over time. Since the energy crisis in southern Australia, it’s become even more attractive to get your solar panels. Plus, you will be giving a bit back to nature and the government as well. Actually, feeling like you are contributing on a global scale is pretty great, don’t you think? Increasing Your Home’s Value No matter how long you plan on staying in your current home, there’s a chance that you might sell it sooner or later. Adding solar panels will only increase its value, especially if you install other upgrades to make it better. Think of it as a long-term investment that will make your home better. Easy to Scale Sometimes it’s rather hard to plan how much energy you will need for your home, and with solar energy, you’re not at the mercy of an existing gridline. Since you can get solar panels from Sydney, transport costs won’t be too expensive either. This is why the best thing to do is explore your options before you purchase and opt for the best quality possible. Predictability No matter how much you want to make energy usage calculable, it’s impossible in most cases. However, with a professionally installed solar energy system, you will be able to predict exactly how much you have to pay, every month. Without any hidden costs. Phenomenal AND cost-effective! Reliability The only bad side of solar energy is when you don’t have enough sunny days, which you have plenty of in the great Outback. This is exactly why Australia is investing in one of the world’s biggest solar energy farm, with a huge battery to back up everything. Over time, it will help alleviate the ongoing energy crisis. New Jobs Besides helping your own home become better, the solar energy industry allows for more people to find jobs. With a bigger demand from year to year, it comes as no surprise that there’ll be a shortage of workers soon enough. Steady Electricity Prices You cannot stop prices from rising, and no matter what you do, you have to go with the changes, i.e. pay whatever it is they tell us we need to pay. Still, with more alternative energy to help the system out, it is possible to keep a steady price range. Opening up New Markets With the chance to improve your environment and open up new jobs, it’s only a matter of time before the solar energy business expands even more. Australia is already becoming a major force in solar battery sales, and it doesn’t seem it is about to slow down at all. With new battery technologies being developed, the market will become ever more profitable.
  4. Solar energy is one of the most useful forms of renewable energy because solar panels and the sun's own energy can be harnessed directly. Technically, solar energy is the radiant light and heat energy produced by the sun as it sends off massive energy from constant nuclear fusion. Here on Earth, though, solar energy is harnessed via "solar collectors" that convert light energy into more usable heat energy. Solar thermal collectors snatch up the heat by absorbing sunlight and solar radiation. Solar collectors can, in fact, refer to a number of different devices designed to harness the sun's energy. Roof-mounted solar hot water panels and solar air heaters are what a lot of homeowners might already be familiar with; concentrated solar power plants use more sophisticated and industrial-strength solar collectors. Concentrated Solar Power Plants and Residential Solar Options Concentrated solar power plants collect solar energy in a slightly different way. Solar towers and solar thermal collector dishes, which look similar to satellite dishes, are the two ways that concentrated solar power plants generate electricity by heating liquids that, in turn, power turbines aligned with electric generators. The fossil fuels that powered the industrial revolution did a great job of bringing greater infrastructure, communication, transportation and technology to the 20th century. The 21st century, though, will see renewables like solar, wind and geothermal playing a much more dominant role. Some people think ill of solar radiation (infrared and ultraviolet), but it can benevolently be used to power the lives of literally billion of people around the world. Solar Thermal and Photovoltaic Solar Power Roof-mounted solar hot water panels, photovoltaic modules and concentrated solar power plants can provide that much-needed energy. The two kinds of solar power harnessed today are solar thermal and solar photovoltaic. The first kind of solar energy—solar thermal—is what most people automatically think of when they think of solar power. Solar thermal systems convert sunlight into thermal energy with the help of solar panels. So, what exactly are solar thermal systems good for? A lot of things that homeowners would find useful, as it happens. Solar thermal systems can be put towards space heating as well as heating water via a solar hot water system. Solar photovoltaic systems, on the other hand, entail converting sunlight directly into electricity with the assistance of photovoltaic cells. (Photovoltaics is the conversion of light—in this case, sunlight—into electricity with semiconductors and the photovoltaic effect.) Photovoltaic systems can be incorporated into homes, electric vehicles and green building designs to ensure energy independence and overall energy savings. The best part is that solar panels are incredibly reliable, need little maintenance and can last up to thirty years when you purchase from a reliable solar panel manufacturer. At the outside, solar panels only lose about half a percentage of their performance per year, which means that even after a generation, your home solar panels will still be harnessing solar energy at approximately 90% efficiency compared to when you originally installed them! The other nice thing about solar is that the Consolidated Appropriations Act provides homeowners a 30% personal tax credit for home PV and solar thermal technology purchases. Solar Power and Your Energy Bills Solar energy facilities are right now actually using something known as "concentrated solar power" to do things like boil water and convert sunlight more directly into electricity. Utility-sized solar energy uses concentrated solar power systems, power towers and dish engines to deliver megawatts of usable electricity to homes and businesses around the country. Solar energy is but one of the amazing forms of green energy out there today—renewable energy sources like wind, rain, geothermal, and hydro (water) energy are also part of the green energy picture. As you look at data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration you'll see that the eight most popular green energy sources of energy have all experienced an increase in usage over the last three years. How Much Can You Really Save? On a smaller scale, you and your family can expect to save a significant amount of money from month to month on your energy expenses by outfitting your home with roof solar panels. The exact amount that you save will have a lot to do with the region of the country that you're located in, possible buyback plans with utility companies in your area, the amount of electricity that your family uses, and the number and efficiency of your home solar panels. The cool thing about solar power is that there are a lot of tax rebate incentives for siding with solar, and solar power might even allow your family to send your electrical meter spinning backward. How? Although you can, of course, still take all the energy that you need from the utility grid in your area, after installing solar panels there's a good chance that you can become energy-independent. Perhaps, at that point, you might even sell back excess energy to your utility company for credit! That can potentially save you thousands of dollars per year since, according to the U.S. Department of Energy, heating and cooling constitute the largest energy expenses for most homes. Remember, solar energy is great for space heating. Save Year Round...and Sidestep Peak Rates The important thing to bear in mind with solar energy and your potential to save thousands every year on your energy expenses is that solar power systems consistently produce the best results when the sun is shining brightest.
  5. There are very few things in life that we can be 100 percent sure of. One of these things is the fact that the sun will rise every single day. Because of this and as a result of increasing energy prices, more people are opting to rely partially or solely on solar energy. The following are a few reasons why. The Sun Will Come out Tomorrow The honest truth is that if the sun does not come out tomorrow, the world will have a lot bigger problems to face than finding inexpensive environmentally friendly energy. However, scientists believe that the sun will continue to shine for at least another 5 billion years. That’s more than enough time for you to recoup any amount of money you invest in installing solar panels. Additionally, enough sun reaches the United States every single day to provide power for the entire country for 10 years. This means that there is literally no limit to what could potentially be done with solar energy. Solar Technology is No Longer in Its Infancy Although many talk about solar energy as if it were a future tech, the truth is that solar systems have been in use since the 70's. And many of the solar energy systems that were installed 40 plus years ago are still working today. Over the past four decades there have been a number of technological improvements that have increased the reliability and energy production capability of solar panels. Solar panels have very few moving parts. They don’t need a lot of maintenance. They are simple to install. And the technology behind them gets better every single day. Solar Technology Saves You Money Investing in solar technology for your home and business makes financial sense. Solar energy lowers your energy bill every month. Additionally, in some states tax incentives are given to homes that use solar energy. And while the practice is diminishing, some utility companies will pay homeowners for the extra electricity they produce. As the price of solar technology continues to plummet and the cost of fossil fuels rise, using solar energy makes more financial sense every day. Solar Energy is Good for the Environment Conventional power relies on processes that damage the environment. Even so-called clean forms of energy like wind energy and hydraulic energy can have a negative impact on the environment where they are located. Solar energy does not produce harmful emissions. It is a truly clean source of energy. Solar Energy Can be Used All Day Long When it comes to discussing solar power panels, companies like Legend Solar that specialize in providing solar panels in the Utah area, are educating the public on the difference between solar energy myths and the reality. Many mistakenly believe that solar power only functions if the sun is out. The truth is that even if a person has solar panels installed in their home, most of the time they are still connected to the city’s energy grid. The only difference is that during the daytime, when they’re not at home, their solar panels are collecting electricity, and this electricity is being pushed back to the electric grid. The result is that the electric meters on their home actually spin backward. In the evening time, if they do need to pull electricity from the grid, they are using credit energy that they’ve earned throughout the day. The neat thing about this credit energy is that it never expires. Solar energy is the wave of the future. By investing in solar energy now, you put yourself in a position to be ahead of the curve. You save money, you protect the environment, and you help make the planet you live on a better and safer place for everyone.
  6. Buying a Solar Panel Installer needs mindful thought as well as meticulous planning. Installing a Home Solar Panel is a fantastic approach to saving power and minimize your own cost of living. Here are several strategies for solar power Installation: Solar installers must be approved Hunt for solar installers that are MCS authorized as a minimum amount. An excellent solar installer can also be listed along with Renewable Energy Assurance Limited (REAL), the Solar Trade Association (STA) or even be members of the Renewable Energy Consumer Code (RECC). Notably, your specialist have to be MCS authorized for you to entitled to the Feed in Tariff plan and its obligations. Examine the condition of your roof Solar panel systems are large which means you need to ensure that the roofing is able to put up with the burden of them. When your residence is aged it could be far better to use a specialist come in and look if it's in suitable condition. Clear the roofing ahead of solar panel installation To help make the solar panel installation procedure as fast and simple as possible make sure that your roof structure is neat and clear. In case the installation men need to commit several hours doing away with leafs, dirt etc this can be just going to enhance set up charge. Go with a location for solar panel installation To get the most out of your solar cells you should be sure that they are exposed to the sunlight for a major duration of the day. While your panels will still operate when it is an overcast day, most power will be developed once the sun light are direct. Therefore make certain that the location you pick for them is not blocked by some other close buildings, tree branches or over growing shrubs. Solar Power Set up is Save the Earth Nowadays a great number of desire using solar power to conventional electrical energy. Stats implies that solar power is definitely 90 percent significantly less damaging compared to power created by fossil energy along with the pollution released from transportation and production units. Quite simply, while using solar powered electrical power, anyone reduce the damaging aftereffect of the technology on the atmosphere. By doing this, most people cover our long term living. It is usually applied for Multiple Purposes Solar panel technology can be used numerous gadgets such as satellites, water heaters, outside lamps. Also automobiles might be powered by sun light. The method that you are going to take advantage of this specific green energy is determined by your personal demands. Reasons to choose Solar Power One of many primary advantages of a solar cell is it cuts down on the price of power. If you use solar system at your house, it will be possible to take down power charges at least 50 %. With them can potentially conserve thousands of dollars in terms of power charges annually. Concurrently as we all like to save the money an additional benefit is that they lessen carbon emissions therefore preserving our planet and getting an improved future pertaining to our children and grandchildren. Article Resource: http://freedomsolar.blog.com/2016/01/28/tips-for-choosing-a-solar-panel-installer/
  7. Does Ireland really get enough sunshine to make Solar Energy worthwhile? Yes. Believe it or not, Ireland actually gets the same amount of sunlight as most of central Europe (the best approximation would be southern France). This is more than enough to make Solar Panels a viable energy option in Ireland. Do Solar Panels only work when it's sunny? No. Even when it is cloudy, the sun's rays provide plenty of harvestable energy. This is known as 'indirect sunlight', which accounts for 60% of all energy provided by the sun. Only 40% of solar energy comes from direct sunlight, so a bright sunny day is not necessary for generating a viable source of solar power. What do Solar Panels actually generate? Over the course of the year, the energy converted by solar panels can provide roughly 65% of a household's hot water. During the summer months this can rise above 95%. What's the difference between Evacuated Tube and Flat Plate Solar Panels? Evacuated Tube Solar Panels are generally more efficient in terms of energy in cloudy weather conditions (i.e. the weather typically observed in Ireland). Flat Plate Solar Panels, while somewhat less efficient in terms of energy production during periods of poor weather, are more durable and are far less likely to require maintenance at any point, making them more budget efficient options for households. My house is quite old. Can Solar Panels still be attached to it? Yes. Some roof tiles may have to be removed to facilitate the Solar Panels, but this is not a major operation and it will not disturb the interiors of a home in any way. The panels themselves are very light so no structural reinforcement is needed. Do I need planning permission to install Solar Panels? No. Planning permission is not required to install Solar Panels on domestic buildings in the Republic of Ireland so long as the panels are smaller than 12 meters squared. Where is the best place to put Solar Panels? The optimum position for Solar panels is facing south and at a 45 degree angle. This will catch more sunshine (and will create more energy) over the course of the year in Ireland than any other layout. While Solar Panels can be placed on walls or even on the ground, the roof is generally considered the best spot as it tends to be away from areas of activity, limiting the chances of them getting damaged. Once installed, what are the running costs of Solar Panels? As there are virtually no moving parts (with the exception of a small circulation pump), the cost of running Solar Panels at full energy producing capacity is negligible - in the region of 20c per year. How long does it take for Solar Panels to start 'paying for themselves'? After approximately 4 or 5 years the savings made from energy created by Solar Panels will have completely covered the cost of purchase and installation (as well as the aforementioned small ongoing maintenance costs). After that, the Solar Panels will essentially be creating free energy on an ongoing basis. What other benefits do you get from installing Solar Panels? In addition to the energy savings you will make, the addition of Solar Panels will greatly increase a house's resale value. The house will also benefit from an improved BER (Building Energy Rating). How long do Solar Panels last? Due to a lack of moving parts, the Solar Panels themselves last a very long time and almost never require maintenance. As it is the only moving part in the whole system, the circulation pump is susceptible to minimal natural wear and tear. It is recommended that the pump is replaced once every 10 to 15 years. Luckily, a circulation pump is an inexpensive item which is easily replaced, usually costing between €10 and €20 - not much of an outlay over the course of a decade or so; working out at about a euro a year. Do Solar Panels come with a warranty? While different companies have different policies, it is usually possible to get a 10 year guarantee which covers repairs and maintenance when it comes to purchasing solar panel products. Are there any grants/subsidies available for buying Solar Panels? Yes. Among the money saving options available to Irish consumers is grant of up to €800 for the purchase/installation of Solar Panels from the SEAI's Better Energy Homes Scheme. More information on this scheme and other means of reducing the cost of Solar Panels can be found here.
  8. If you are a home owner or are looking to buy a home, you should consider the importance of having an energy efficient and family friendly home. A green home will keep your energy bills down and will be helpful for the environment. There are many green communities like the ones found at Princeton Classic Homes in Texas. Below, you can find out what they are doing to accomplish this with these seven tips. Fluorescent lighting Switching to fluorescent lighting in your home will cut down on your energy usage drastically. Florescent bulbs use less than 1/4th of the amount of energy that normal bulbs use. Although they are more expensive than normal light bulbs, they will last much longer unlike light bulbs that need to be replaced after extended use. They will also help you lower your monthly energy bill. After a few months, they will have paid for themselves in their energy savings. Replace your old appliances If you are still using appliances from the 1990’s, it is time to replace them. Old appliances have poor energy efficiency ratings and may be costing you more than you think. Inefficient appliances can be costing you thousands of dollars a year in wasted energy usage. The biggest offender of this is the refrigerator. By exchanging your old fridge for a new one, you could easily cut down on the energy you use significantly. Keep your windows open Use the sun to your advantage. Keep your windows open and the blinds drawn whenever the sun is out. By doing this, you will be able to cut down on the electricity used to light your house. Also, keeping your central air off in favor of a cool breeze will make a big impact on the amount of energy you use. As an added bonus, you will be able to enjoy the fresh air that will be circulating through your home by keeping your windows open. Clean with micro fiber Ditch the cleaning products where ever you can and use micro fiber cloths instead. Micro fiber cloths attract dirt and will allow you to clean surfaces without the use of harmful chemical sprays. Dampened microfiber cloths will be able to effectively clean most hard surfaces throughout your kitchen and bathroom including glass and wood. You can re-use these cloths after you throw them in the wash. Grow plants indoors Plants will help filter the air in your home. They will absorb some pollutants and expel clear air. There are many plants that are particularly good at this. Plants like spider plants, rubber plants, palms and boston ferns are all easy to care for indoors and will make a noticeable difference with the air quality in your home. Always recycle Recycling is important for the environment, but this goes beyond simply keeping an extra recycle bin in your home. You can take recycling to a whole new level by re-purposing items that you would otherwise throw away. Use egg cartons as jewelry organizers, save glass jars and use them as cups, or think of some of your own ideas. Anything you can find a use for instead of throwing it away will be helpful for the environment. Switch to solar Solar energy is becoming more popular with the new advances that are being made to it year by year. It is becoming increasingly more affordable and efficient as we continue to perfect them. Many people shy away from the idea of switching to solar because they feel it is an all-or-nothing option. This is not the case. You can start small and use that amount of solar energy to add along with feeding off of the electricity grid. No matter what amount you can commit to, any bit will help.
  9. The amount of energy-efficient innovations on the market is at an all-time high. This is great news for the homeowners who wish to cut down on electrical costs. Here is how new technology can make your home more efficient. Rainwater Harvesting System Investing in a rainwater harvesting system will certainly help you to live an eco-friendly lifestyle. Not only are rain collection systems very inexpensive, but they are also relatively simple to install. The stored rainwater can be used for a variety of different things, including flushing the toilet and washing laundry. Over the course of a year, the system can really save a lot of extra money. Solar Water Heater Unfortunately, traditional water heaters can use quite a bit of energy. In comparison, solar water heaters are far more efficient. In as little as two years, the energy savings will actually cover the initial cost of the solar water heater. As sunlight shines down on the solar panels, energy is quickly collected. Contrary to popular belief, the photovoltaic cells can even absorb energy on cloudy days. Heated Floors Companies such as Summerstep actually design in-floor heating systems. After the installation of an in-floor heating system, you will not have to depend totally on a HVAC system to keep your home warm. When the temperatures dip below freezing, many homeowners have to turn up the dial on their thermostat. An in-floor heating system will help to eliminate this energy-draining problem. Children and pets will especially love the extra warmth. Smart Thermostat The most advanced thermostats on the market offer incredible energy savings. With the use of high-tech sensors, they can actually adjust the home’s temperature according to the changing weather conditions. These nifty thermostats can also be easily controlled via a mobile phone or computer. If you are asleep under the covers or away from home, a smart thermostat can be programmed to lower the home’s temperature. Research shows that a smart thermostat can drop your electric bill by $100 dollars a month. Automated Lighting Many homeowners have already transitioned to LED lighting. However, installing an automated lighting system can further improve your home’s efficiency. Instead of leaving your lights on full blast, an automated dimmer switch allows you to dim the lights to save energy. Due to the rise in the cost of electricity, homeowners are strongly encouraged to invest in energy-saving technology. All five of these innovations promise to keep your home efficient.
  10. There are many benefits to making your home more energy efficient. It will save you an enormous sum of money in utility bills and will also give you the great feeling of knowing that you are doing your part to protect the environment. Here are seven cutting edge ways to make your home more energy efficient. Install Solar Panels Instead of counting on your power company to heat your home, you can harness the natural power of the sun with solar panels. They will substantially increase the comfort level of your home. Switch to Florescent Light Bulbs Many homes still use conventional incandescent light bulbs, but you can save a tremendous amount of energy by using florescent bulbs instead. Although florescent bulbs cost more at the store, they save you money in the long run by lasting several times longer than their incandescent counterparts. Reduce Appliance Use Cut down on the number of times that you use your dishwasher, washing machine, and dryer. Only use them when you have a full load. If you have any appliances that you do not intend to use for a long period of time, disconnect them. Install Energy Efficient Windows Energy efficient windows are an excellent addition to any home. They will reduce drafts, cut down on condensation, improve the temperature of your home, and save you money on your electricity bills. Companies such as Five Star Windows Inc. offer a wide selection of these types of windows for sale. Install a High Efficiency Furnace Conventional furnaces waste valuable energy. Like florescent bulbs, you can spend a little more now in order to save a great deal of money later. High efficiency furnaces use fewer fossil fuels, last longer, and heat your home more effectively. Get a Low Flow Toilet Most toilets waste water each and every time that they are flushed. Low flow toilets will save you a massive amount of money on your water bill. You will cut your home's water consumption by thousands of gallons per year. Add Insulation Increasing the amount of insulation in your home will trap heat inside, meaning that you won't have to use the heater in order for your home to be comfortable. The attic is an especially important place to add more insulation. With recent advanced in appliance technology, making your home energy efficient is easier than ever. You will be amazed at how much money you can save by following these tips.
  11. For the first time, the FIFA World Cup final in Brazil yesterday was powered by the sun. Solar panels have been installed on both the Arena Pernambuco and the famous Estádio do Maracanã by Yingli Solar, the world’s largest solar panel manufacturer and a FIFA World Cup Sponsor. The solar panels are expected to generate more than 1MW per year of clean electricity. FIFA say these solar projects represents their commitment to sustainability as well as a way to reduce the environmental impact of its own operations. “Sustainability is one of the key tenants in our vision for the 2014 FIFA World Cup,” said Federico Addiechi, FIFA’s Head of Corporate Social Responsibility. “We hope this landmark project will be the catalyst to increase the production and use of renewable energy in the country.” FIFA and Yingli has installed 1500 solar panels on the Estádio do Maracanã, one of football’s most iconic venues and South America’s largest stadium. The solar panels will generate over 550MWh of clean electricity which can power an estimated 240 homes annually. The solar panels will prevent the release of about 350 tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere each year, similar to the impact of planting 14,000 trees. The Arena Pernambuco, home to five matches of the FIFA World Cup, was powered by a much bigger solar installation. The plant - located in São Lourenço de Mata, a suburb of Recife, the regional capital of the Brazilian state of Pernambuco - uses more than 3650 high-efficiency panels to generate about 1,500MWh of clean electricity each year. The solar power generated could power 600 average homes and is expected to offset about 800 tons of carbon dioxide each year, similar to the impact of planting 35,000 trees. It’s also the first solar power plant in Pernambuco.