Feeling overwhelmed by all the news about energy and water usage and where you fit in? The last time you shopped at a store for an energy-efficient appliance or light bulb was it difficult to choose the right product or understand the potential energy savings?
While California was an early leader in prioritizing energy efficiency for new buildings, only since 2009 has the state directed the same focus toward existing buildings with the passing of Assembly Bill (AB) 758.
While serving in the Navy, I was charged with finding opportunities to reduce costs in order to free up resources for operations. My team quickly discovered that energy and water were the most lucrative areas for savings, principally because of our wasteful behaviors.
You know how many miles per gallon you can drive in your car, and you can read the ingredient labels on your food, but I’ll bet that you don’t know how much energy and water are being consumed in the buildings where you work, live, shop and recreate.
This year is shaping up to be pivotal in California’s energy sector. New leadership in the legislature and at the California Public Utilities Commission along with Governor Jerry Brown’s ambitious goals for clean energy present a tremendous opportunity to build on existing state policy and achievements.
We live in very exciting times! As new solar energy technologies and policies develop, they are making solar cost‑competitive with fossil fuels. Local governments in communities and counties across the U.S. can play an important role in helping enable more residents and businesses transition to solar energy sources. It’s a win-win for consumers, the environment and the economy.
We Homo sapiens have always had to adapt to climate, geology and geography. However, in the 20th century, through our burning of fossil fuels — coal, oil and gas — and mass deforestation, which increases atmospheric carbon dioxide levels, we are causing the atmosphere to warm and the climate to change.
CSE recently conducted research to find out if political ideology helps determine people’s motivations for adopting solar photovoltaics (PV) systems and, if so, whether these characteristics play a role in determining the size of installed systems.
People who buy or lease an electric vehicle (EV) mainly do so to save money on fuel costs. Unfortunately, the majority of California EV owners don’t achieve the greatest savings, which may hamper increased EV adoption.
California has gained significant positive results with sustainable energy incentive programs with record numbers of consumers going solar and driving more electric vehicles. Some of what CSE has learned in helping to drive such clean energy initiatives can help local government agencies to shape successful clean energy programs throughout California and across the country.