When oil could be pumped from a 69 1/2 foot well in Titusville, Pennsylvania, in 1859, it was a cheap commodity; when it has to be piped through an 800-mile pipeline across Alaska from Prudhoe Bay, or extracted from the ocean floor in the stormy waters of the Atlantic, or shipped in supertankers all the way from the Persian Gulf, oil becomes an expensive luxury.
Edward Abbey, "The Second Rape of the West" in Playboy (Dec. 1975)
For specifics on my use of solar energy to heat water and space and to generate electricity, go to my Solar page.
The Larch Company and and my partner are 100% climate neutral ("having little or no effect on the Earth's climate") by annually purchasing carbon offsets from the Bonneville Environmental Foundation. To determine your personal atmospheric carbon sins, run your personal numbers through their Carbon Calculator. Many companies now offer to sell indulgences to mitigate one's climate sins. Some are quite cheap. You get what you pay for. Make sure they are independently verified. BEF is a good one. They now allow you to mitigate your hydrological sins as well (the water you drink and bathe with came from somewhere at a cost to some things).
Book Review: Reinventing Fire: Bold Business Solutions for the New Energy Era, by Amory Lovins and the Rocky Mountain Institute was published in Home Power.
Reviving PACE-Removing RE and EE Barriers, published in Home Power, reports on the a government program that improves home values, reduced home ownership costs, saves energy, creates jobs, increases tax revenues without increasing taxes, requires no government subsidies, and leverages private capital for public good.
Getting the Green for your High Performance Home, published in Home Power, discusses the trials and tribulations of getting mortgage lenders to recognize the economic and market value of green construction.
No Room for Energy Projection on Public Lands in the West argues that public lands should provide goods and services that the private sector cannot. Energy development—even renewable energy such as solar and wind power—are inappropriate for public lands and are contributing to the extinction of species such as desert tortoise, prairie chicken and sage grouse. Wind towers should be limited to private lands and photovoltaic panels to rooftops.
Cost Effective Hybrids in Home Power examines the financial benefits of operating a hybrid electric vehicle, using my own 2006 Ford Escape Hybrid as an example.
Toyota Prius: Ready for Prime Time is my review inHome Power magazine of my first-generation Toyota Prius.
Doing Well While Doing Good: Conservation of Energy as a Rational Financial Investment appeared in Home Power and considers the pure economic rationality of compact fluorescent bulbs, light emitting diodes light bulbs, solar water heaters, the Toyota Prius, and photovoltaic electric generation.
Wallowa County Chieftain Columns
Avoiding War and Helping Farmers, Industry and Environment If the portion of the Department of Defense budget dedicated to keeping cheap oil flowing from the Middle East was funded from the gas tax rather than the income tax, the price of gas would more properly reflect the cost, in dollars, if not blood.
How 'Green' Is Your Electricity? Perhaps the new offering today are better called less-brown electricity.
Abolish the Bonneville Power Administration This bloated and unnecessary federal bureaucracy no longer serves a useful function in the Pacific Northwest.
The Oregon Department of Energy can not only help you with the basics of renewable energy, but, if you file an Oregon tax return, how they will give you money to install solar hot water heaters, energy efficient appliances, renewable energy generating systems, etc. If you don't file an Oregon tax return, you can still find the most energy efficienct appliances on their site.
The aim here is efficiency, not austerity. Conservation may be a sign of personal virtue, but it is not a sufficient basis for a sound, comprehensive energy policy.
Vice President Dick Cheney, former CEO of Halliburton, Inc. (an oil services company.), (as quoted in the New York Times, May 1, 2001)
We will run out of air before we run out of oil.