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RE: An Option to nukes or turning Texas into a reservior...

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I looked into doing the same when I constructed my home in the desert in
1993. The problem was the price of creating a photovoltaic system along with
the potential volatility of the backup batteries. With the investment in the
system, I would still not be able to power my A/C system - the biggest drain
on electricity in the desert. I turned out that the best I could achieve
would be to power my lights and forget the A/C and most likely the TV and
Computers.
Also, as I recall, the buy back reduced in price (fluctuates by market need
in much the same way that homeowners become earthquake conscience only after
an earthquake but rarely for more than a month or so after). When the crisis
exists, people become more energy conscience, but as yet, the cost does not
justify the initial investment as it takes care of only a small portion of
the energy needs in the desert.
I would say you have a much better chance in San Diego because you don't
have the same need for A/C. When I lived in Los Angeles, I think I used the
A/C only two weeks a year - when the Santa Ana's blew and I doubt that I
used my furnace more than a week or so a year.
Living in the desert, I put in a dual system for cooling. Swamp Coolers for
low humidity and temperatures below 100 degrees (or up to 110 degrees) and
A/C when it gets hotter (average temperature between May and October is
around 115). I did buy in an area where I was on a privately owned utility -
Imperial Irrigation. Since there are no shareholders, the cost of
electricity is nearly 1/2 of what Commonwealth Edison charges (when we moved
in Com Ed was 15-cents a KW hour and IR was 7-1/2 cents a KW/hour). Although
our prices are held for another five years on our current contract with
electricity suppliers, we still pay an average of nearly $200.00 a month
year round for a level pay plan.
The point is that until there is some serious consideration for long term
solar projects rather than only when the cost of oil is high enough to
entice R&D, we will not get very far in developing affordable Photovoltaic
systems.
Just my opinion on the subject. I still do like the idea of solar energy and
would rather have panels on my flat roof than compete with my neighbors by
having a windmill and pink flamingos on my front lawn:o)

Dennis

> -----Original Message-----
> From: sharonb(--nospam--at)slarchitects.com [mailto:sharonb(--nospam--at)slarchitects.com]
> Sent: Friday, May 04, 2001 8:44 AM
> To: seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org
> Subject: An Option to nukes or turning Texas into a reservior...
>
>
> Deja Vu, Remember the 70's energy crisis...
>
> In the 70's, solar power was a popular topic of discussion after the oil
> embargo.  At the time, solar power was not an economical option
> due to price
> and efficiency.  It was thought as an option for the future and  that it
> would never work unless the government got involved.  (Check out the space
> program!)
>
> Of course both price and efficiency have improved...it is "the future"
> ...and the California government HAS become involved by offering rebate
> incentives, up to 50% off with The Emerging Renewables Buy-Down Program
>
> http://www.energy.ca.gov/greengrid/ <http://www.energy.ca.gov/greengrid/>
>
> By adding photovoltaics to my roof, and changing out my old
> dangerous floor
> gas heater to an electric heater that doubles as a fireplace, I
> will reduce
> my gas bill as well as generate all the electricity I need.  The whole
> system will pay for itself in 8 years or less depending on the price of
> traditional energy.  (This does not include the price of the new
> heater.  I
> consider that a maintenance expense.)
>
> Although it may still not be an economic option for some, it is a viable
> option for those who really want to set an example, get off the grid, and
> stop building power plants.
>
> ...just my opinion
>
> Sharon Robertson Bonds, PE
> Salerno/Livingston Architects
> 363 Fifth Avenue, Third Floor
> San Diego, California  92101
> (619) 234-7471
>
> 	-----Original Message-----
> 	From:	Bill Polhemus [SMTP:bill(--nospam--at)polhemus.cc]
> 	Sent:	Friday, May 04, 2001 4:15 AM
> 	To:	seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org
> 	Subject:	RE: Alaska - turn Texas into a reservior to solve
> California's energy crisis
>
> 	Whether you guys like it or not, more nukes--the kind that provide
> the bulk
> 	of power of much of the First World--are on their way.
>
> 	William L. Polhemus, Jr., P.E.
> 	Polhemus Engineering Company
> 	Katy, Texas
> 	Phone 281-492-2251
> 	Fax 281-492-8203
>
>
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