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electric vehicles

Get People into Electric Vehicles Through the Zone of Acceptance

By Energy Rant No Comments
A few weeks ago, I observed a webinar [1]sponsored by the Advanced Energy Economy to help me triangulate what the next great trend(s) might be. That meshed well with the electric vehicles (EV) post of last week and this week. The webinar featured two electrification apostles and two critics. The apostles led off with the no-brainerisms of the EV. The economics are hysterically bullish. It costs a tiny fraction to power personal transportation with electricity, primarily through cheap renewable energy, versus petroleum-based fuels. Point taken. Technological Determinism Later, when the critics came onto the scene, one of them noted that...
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Energy Efficiency Mandates – And Geese

By Energy Efficiency, Energy Rant No Comments
Last week this commentary regarding energy efficiency mandates from the Heritage Foundation showed up in my Google news feed, and it made for an interesting read.  I hold the same view when it comes to shoving products down the gullets of people like the goose in preparation of foie gras, a disgusting practice.  That is not a way to make friends for desired lasting results.  E.g., we’re going to unplug the water cooler to save energy and you will like the warm water.  Besides, the feng shui will improve and bring better karma because that cold stuff throws your system...
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Ballad of Willie Widget Man

By Energy Efficiency, Energy Rant No Comments
As I created Widget Man last week I couldn’t get Elton John’s Rocket Man out of my head, so naturally I started to think parody.  A warm up may be good to get your rhythm. Willie Widget Man goes sumpin ike iss: They set my goals so high, I cried Two percent, holy crap! Why they gotta be high as a kite like that? I miss the fruit so low, I miss old code It’s not easy for me now It’s such a mindless rite And I think it’s gonna be a damn hard time No light bulbs anywhere for...
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Saints Are Marching In

By Energy Efficiency, Energy Rant, Utility Stuff No Comments
One of the most rewarding aspects of our business is ensuring people get it right and customers get the legitimate energy and monetary savings they should be receiving.  My answer to “why should we pick you?” is: we are passionate about what we do; we get things right; and we want to make a difference – improve things.  The problem occurs when others don’t give a rip about these things. Michaels’ primary thrust in the evaluation arena is impact evaluation, which is – what difference does the program make?  The questions are (1) what is happening versus what would have...
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Energy Savings Rubbish

By Energy Efficiency, Energy Rant No Comments
The best thing about working in our industry is the potential for continuous learning, unlike nearly any other field.  There are enough things to learn about buildings, manufacturing, systems, how they are built, as in design, construction and commissioning to fill a 45 year engineering career.  One always finds something “new” even in old buildings – bizarre design concepts for example.  Have you ever seen how Fig Newtons are made?  It isn’t easy. Engineers might think, what else is there to programs besides determining energy savings, simple payback and possibly ROI?  About 75%, if not, more.  There are market assessments,...
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Flying Rodents

By Energy Efficiency, Energy Rant 2 Comments
Before I get to this week’s rant, or I should say, this week’s primary rant, I need to share this with you.  Just before the holidays in Strange Magic,I tore into hands-free energy audit software.  All you need is an address and billing information and voila, there it is; an energy audit that tells you everything you need to know to cut your energy bills by a certain guesstimate. This week I came across an apparent competitor to the one discussed in Strange Magic, so I viewed their online charting and graphics.  They present analysis via bar chart for various...
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Replacing the Burger

By Energy Efficiency, Energy Rant, Sustainability 2 Comments
The race is on to develop and deliver next generation successful energy efficiency programs.  There is indeed innovation in the marketplace.  The days of what I call “hamburger selling” will end, probably in the next decade.  Selling EE in these cases is like selling hamburgers – who can sell the most and the cheapest hamburgers that people will eat.  The product is unsophisticated – lighting, primarily.  The market is huge and opportunities ubiquitous.  Marketing and selling the burger is the name of the game and will be for a few more years. In the past five years, energy efficiency has...
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CFL Mud Wrasslin

By Energy Efficiency, Government, Investments, Tax Stuff No Comments
As you must know, last week congress failed to pass a repeal of the incandescent light bulb with their “Better Use of Light Bulbs” (BULB) act.  There you go right there - God awful marketing.  Who comes up with this junk?  Why does every bill have to be called an “act”?  It’s like every scandal has “gate” attached to it.  Do the Millennials even know where gate comes from?  Climategate.  Memogate.  Blagogate.  Filegate.  Macacagate.  Monicagate.  Nannygate (2 each).  Travelgate.  Troopergate.  Guess who has the most gates.  I don’t know but I’ll bet Bill and Hillary have to be in the...
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EE, Policy, and Irony

By Energy Efficiency, Government, LEED, Stimulus No Comments
As my crop of silver hair continues to expand, I have become more of a historian, particularly when it comes to cause and effect, and peoples’ behavior.  I step back and observe what is happening and what has happened as a result of this or that policy.  Theories are nice, and they may be well thought out and make sense but if they fail miserably, should we double down and try it again?  Policy isn’t like launching rockets or breaking the speed of sound. For those things, you can test, observe failure/problems and make adjustments.  For example, Chuck Yeager was...
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