Green Technology

So the buzz words of the decade include Green, Eco, Renewable and Energy Saving, these all represent an emerging market which is here for a number of reasons including:- “saving the planet” and energy usage reduction. To me its a bit of both, but I always try and add common sense into the equation, one of the biggest drivers for me is cost saving, if it saves me money then its probably a good idea. I’m unlikely to install a £20,000 system that has a payback of 25 years, but a £1500 system with a payback of 3 years is within the realms of possibility.

If you watch Grand Designs or Not Easy Being Green you may know of the new technologies out there:-

I find all these types of new technology quite interesting and will be watching them as they develop, but I started simple, changed all my bulbs for energy efficient ones, purchased a energy monitor  to measure my electricity usage, installed some automatic power sockets that turn things off instead of leaving it on standby and purchased A rated or above appliances such as boilers, washing machines and fridge freezers, I buy second-hand when I can and I had my loft and walls insulated by Hull warm for £250. I’ve seen a massive reduction in my Gas and Electricity usage over the year which has enabled me to spend money on other things such as converting my old VW Campervan to run on LPG.
Whatever your reason for doing these types of projects, just ask yourself one question:- “Do you want to save money….well do ya!”

This is a guest post from Alan Dalgairns.

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11 Responses to “Green Technology”

  1. Jaan Orvet
    March 26, 2009 at 6:10 pm #

    We’re going green as much as possible. From the lightbulbs to power strips that turn off multiple apps.

    Living in a city – check.
    Driving a hybrid – check.
    Using to get green hosting – check.

    But there’s always more one can do, and it’s a “job” we don’t mind doing.

    Interesting article from San Francisco Magazine on not being able to do enough

  2. admin
    March 26, 2009 at 7:49 pm #

    We are also trying to do our bit too, but not utilising technology as much as we could. We had an order in for a Wattson from diykyoto to track our energy usage but they were having supply problems, so never got it.

    LED lightbulbs are looking good and will certainly be using them in the future.

  3. Adam
    March 26, 2009 at 8:22 pm #

    Great post Alan, and great to meet you.
    We too are eco-hippies 🙂
    We have the same energy meter as you show, all the bulbs are low energy type.
    We also fitted a wood burning stove which has led to a reduction of around 40% in our gas bill.

    The new extension will have led lighting installed whist next year I am going to fit heating ducts to take the heat from the livingroom (the wood burner) into the bedrooms to reduce the use of the boiler.

    I did look at a pellet burning stove but had to rule it out due to cost and space, also looked at air-source heat pump, but ruled that out due to noise.

    I would love to do a community project of a wind turbine, where we all put a little bit to get a BIG turbine and all save a bit..


  4. David Rinnan
    March 26, 2009 at 8:34 pm #

    Air / Air heat exchangers can be had at around 1k – 2k gbp and are proven to work, no fuzz no sound. Can also produce cold during the warmest two or three days a year.

    Most houses with fairly open architecture can do it with one unit. Sometimes two indoor units are needed but they can often go on the same outdoor unit.

    It has somewhere between 3-5 times the efficiency of pure electricity based radiators.

    The larger heat exchangers for air/water/ground/mountain are of course even better but difficult to muster up the cash needed, unless you know that you will be living there for a long while.

    I have noted that floorheating on the bottom floor is great since you can lower the overall temperature. As long as you arent cold at your feet you dont feel cold at all. 2nd floor rarely need heating apart from the coldest days (minus 5-15 centigrade)

  5. admin
    March 26, 2009 at 11:00 pm #

    I’m thinking I do need an energy meter and pronto now! 🙂

    @Adam Wood burning stoves look great – if we didn’t already have an old fireplace, we would have one like a shot.

    @David The heat exchanger sounds great – I am pretty ignorant when it comes to this technology… are there any good links to companies who do them?

    Our big problem is old windows – sash and some with orginal glass! Think nice, but drafty and VERY poor for heat retention. We are looking at some new ones, restored, new wood and pulleys, and special glass – not PVC :-O , but they cost a whole load of money. Perhaps one at a time is the answer!

  6. @nthony
    March 27, 2009 at 11:24 am #

    Building rated by BREEM as Excellent – Solar Siphons, North face wall heat exchanger after underfloor heating, 86Kw solar panel, processed rainwater for grey water application etc.. Three out of five of the tech staff ride into work meaning we are taking around 11000 miles per year off of our cars/roads/pollution between us.

    In the working environment we are currently moving to clustered disk-less servers that run cloned installs (on CF currently possibly PXE boot later), meaning we can retire and recruit boxes via the load balancer from the cluster as and when it is required.

    Diskless means, less heat inside boxes, less heat in rack, less power, and less failures through heat/moving parts … the environmental enemies of a datacentre. Next up we are looking at tunneling as opposed to hot / cold isles in the name of cooling efficiency, but this would have to be onsite, as opposed to in existing so we are taking 100MBit feed to the offices over FibreSpeed project.

    Like the IBM social engineering adv. points out – its as much about costing and efficiency as tree hugging.

  7. admin
    March 27, 2009 at 1:29 pm #

    Great comment Anthony – good news on the bike riding. I like to think my very small commute 😉 is good for the environment!

  8. Alan Dalgairns
    March 30, 2009 at 1:14 pm #

    Great comments, seems there are a lot of you doing your bit, makes me wonder if there is a strong link between being green and technology workers?

    Technology tends to get a lot of bad press when it comes to green issues, it would be an interesting turn of events if we found out that planet saving “bleeding edge” products tent to be used by technical people!

    I also forgot to mention I bike work on an electric bike (weather permitting!) and my daily drive is a 1.4 Diesel (110g CO2)

    Next projects include double glazing, fit a wood burner, solar water heating, growing veg and Chicken keeping!

  9. admin
    March 30, 2009 at 6:25 pm #

    Alan, you have some great plans afoot! The eglu chicken coop is something I have my eye on, but not sure if the cat will be impressed 😉

    Perhaps if we got enough people interested in something and a commitment to purchase, we could organise some group buys and get a discount….. Worth a thought?

    I think the technology workers are very switched on, well read, or well surfed! Hence know about what is happening and current.

  10. Sean Kelly
    May 26, 2009 at 1:14 am #

    A little late to this thread I know, however I only recently obtained an invitation to beta test some energy saving software for my Linux PCs, so thought it appropriate to post something here.

    The software I’m testing works as a daemon monitoring the PCs running process and dynamically adjusts the frequency to the CPU accordingly. Since testing I haven’t encountered any noticeable impact to the performance of either my desktop PC, nor to my nearly always on server.

    Due to the nature of the terms & conditions of the closed beta test, I’m not at liberty to provide a more detailed information such as benchmarking the statistical breakdown of the performance results. I do, however have permission to announce that during a least intensive process I gained an estimated energy saving of 0.011905kWh (44.54%) on my desktop and, 0.093777kWh (55.25%) on my server.

    From an individual users perspective the energy savings don’t seem that huge, although over a period of time and collectively this could become noticeable. Server farms, cluster networks and other venues with a high number of PCs would see the most significant results by running such software on each node. Apart from helping towards reducing our appetite of energy consumption, another advantage of this software is possibly an increase in a processors lifetime expectancy.

    Currently, the company is offering, for a limited period, an initial closed beta testing to Linux users only. They do have plans to roll out to other popular platforms such as Windows & MacOS in the near future. The software is available packaged for a variety of the popular distributions and runs in the background, so there is no user interaction required.

    If you are a Linux user and want to beta test this software and save some energy, then you can direct message me your email address to my Twitter account @naesk and I will be happy to forward on a invite. Alternatively, if Jon Moss approves, you could email him your details to this site for forwarding on to me.

  11. automatischer handel
    June 6, 2011 at 10:36 pm #

    Ohne Verkauf – Ohne Kunden – Kein MLM oder ähnliches.

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