Alternative and renewable energy seems to be a big topic these days. Using and finding other means of alternative and renewable energy would really help the environment, not including our financial burdens. We would have fewer power surges and rolling blackouts. Las Cruces and surrounding areas would also have less pollution and people would most likely live a little healthier. The city of Las Cruces passing a policy to start using natural resources that won’t harm the environment and making more restrictions on power and water usage would help our city greatly.
This policy would also help research ways for businesses and the general public to obtain solar panels and wind-mills for their homes and businesses. There should be a way to have everyone participate in conserving energy and be able to use solar energy. There are many different approaches that we can go about this situation. For example: Asking local businesses for donations and government grants are just a couple resources to help get started, but there are many more ways. There are many types of solar energy, some inexpensive and others more expensive.
Although none of these systems are cheap, there are many ways to get grants, donations and loans. There are also many tax credits for homeowners and businesses for energy efficient buildings. According DSIR Solar, since 2006 the federal government has been giving up to a thirty percent tax credit for home owners that buy energy efficient homes, remodel existing homes to energy efficiency and/or buy solar equipment. This program was suppose to end this year but was just recently extended to 2016. Extensive energy use seems to be a big issue for our society today.
People use more energy than they should then complain about their utility bills each month. There are many very simple ways to conserve energy that people either overlook or just don’t seem to care about. There are many simple ways to conserve energy, taking shorter showers, do laundry in full loads, turn off lights and electronics not only when people are not home but also when not needed or being used. There are some people that just don’t care and some that don’t realize how much electricity costs to make.
There are probably many ways to solve these problems, simply informing the public of how to save energy, cut utility bills and the truth about the cost of making electricity by sending out flyers and making television informational programs. Businesses are big energy users. There are many businesses that keep the power on all the time which is a lot of electricity being used. Walmart is a good example. These stores have hundreds of solar windows in the roof. Yet, they keep all the lights on all the time which is a huge power consumption.
They could fix this by turning off most of the lights during the day. There are enough windows in these buildings to provide enough light. Other things that can be done in businesses are to turn most of the lights in freezers during the day, and at night maybe just use the lights in every other freezer. Some businesses keep some lights on at night for security purposes. Turning these off and installing motion sensor lights and/or alarms will help as well. Businesses and the general public that need to use the energy should get either solar panels or wind mills or both.
By using these we are using natural resources. There are two types of Solar systems, solar thermal and Photovoltaic. The solar thermal method uses energy from the sun directly to generate heat. The solar thermal method are solar panels that uses the energy from the sun directly to generate heat and transfer it for water and space heating in buildings. The photvaltaic method converts the sun’s power into electricity with the use of solar panels, backup battery and/or generator.
Wind-mills also known as wind-generators are another resources. In our area either one works well because we get plenty of sun and plenty of wind. There is also a water runoff purge system that can be used, more specifically for large commercial building and is a little more complicated system but it is a natural resource. There really should be no complaints that people cannot afford it. There are many grants out there for these type of things, it just takes a little dedication and research.
Especially when it comes to finding ways to conserve energy which in turn improves the economy and earth, these grants can typically be pretty easy to get. One more thing the city of Las Cruces can and should do is create a policy for all new buildings within the county and city should be built a minimum of LEED certified. LEED stands for leadership in energy and design. There are four qualifications for a LEED building which are certified, silver, platinum and gold with certified being on the low end.
When we talk about a LEED building we are talking about having a green building, or a sustainable, environmentally friendly building made of natural resources. According to usgbc. org even a certified building can save up to thirty percent on energy. Water and electricity alone are not the only things the city of Las Cruces needs to be looking at for alternative energy. There are many other factors that play a part in alternative and renewable energy. Recycling is something to be focused on as well.
According to sources, it costs about eighteen percent more energy to make new products and materials from scratch then it does to remake them from recycled parts. The city of Las Cruces has many resources that general public does not have. Not only do they have more resources but they also have more power to force, implement and restrict some people to do things. Forcing someone to do something is not always a good thing, but especially when people don’t care is a good thing because then they’ll get the point.