1/18/2009

Fill the Energy Boot

At the Urbana, MD Volunteer Fire and Rescue Station a Clean Energy and Green Living Fest was held on January 18, 2009. A number of government agencies, businesses, and non-profits and citizens gathered to explore sustainable energy alternatives.
The photos below show how it was done...and done right.
  • First, a firehouse is a great local resource to use to host it.
  • Second, the local Methodist church provided great ham sandwiches, coffee, hot chocolate, ham and bean soup, hand-made rock candy, and the warmth of comfort food.
  • Third, the speakers (state and local pols, businessmen (solar heat and thermal loop installers, wind turbine installers, recycled roof shingle to road enterprise, etc.) kept their talks short and sweet.
  • Fourth, the simple floor plan and hand-made booth science project triptychs encouraged people to talk and explore, and they did.
My favorite booth was Asphalt Roof Recycling Center They recycle used roof shingles into roads, driveways, parking lots, driveways, hot mix asphalt, paving tiles, horse riding arena footing, and other products. How great is that!
Sustainable Energy Sytems, LLC had a booth showing its work with solar water heating, radiant floor heating, and solar photovoltaic installation.
Fire fighters raise money by putting out a muck book and a sign saying, "Fill the boot."
That's were we are with energy right now.
The boot is not half full or half empty, really, it just needs to be filled.
Look at the energy needs of your kids. Mine have PS3s, iPods, computer systems, hard drives and peripherals, video systems, guitars, amplifiers...it never ends. They need ENERGY and they need lots and lots of it.
And they are not alone.
Look at your car. Look at your servers. Huge energy needs.
Where will all that energy come from?
Now, conservation comes first. In fact, my best conversation here was with a father and mother of two boys whose electric bill has gone from $220 a month to $414 a month...in one month. My tip to him for the greatest savings TODAY was to caulk and line his attic with Reflectix.
Hydrocarbons have served us well for over a century, but we need greater and greater amounts of alternatives. This includes nuclear (and I grew up a few miles from 3 Mile Island), solar, biomass, wood, H2O, wind, hydro...basically, it is unlimited.
But our dependence on foreign regimes that hate us has to end for a variety of reasons.
Given the success of this small, grass-roots alternative energy fest at a local firehouse, I'm hopeful that we will end our dependence on foreign sources of energy.
As before, we'll create our own energy here, using American stick-to-it-tive-ness, fortitude, inventive genius, willpower, technology leadership, luck, and a devotion to family and country.

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