Talk #70, 2/29/12

Energy and our Way of Life

Barry Butler

Butler Sun Solutions, Inc.

I will review the current energy forms in light of the subsidies afforded to each, so they may be compared on a level playing field. There are risks and benefits for the use of any energy system. We allow the political system to determine which risks get placed in the price of the energy and which ones do not. Supply and demand Energy Economics are not working today, because price does not reflect the true cost of use.
I will review the latest materials and design advances in solar water heating systems. These systems have improved and become easier to install, lowering the installed cost to the user. The same is true for Photovoltaic electric power systems. Converting to 220 VAC at the PV module level allows more people who have trees shading their roofs to have PV systems. Costs have come down and reliability is up.
Non-governmental agencies are taking the lead encouraging the use of solar in the US. Real estate associations and mortgage bankers are valuing solar hot water and PV systems at 60% of the new price if the solar improvement has been installed within the last 5 years. Solar is now being recognized as the only appliance you can buy that will pay you back in avoided utility costs.
The lack of a National Energy Policy is hampering the development of a sustainable energy system which allows us all to enjoy abundant energy and a clean environment. Ultimately the world needs all of the energy production sources we now use, plus massive conservation efforts. Pricing the true cost of the energy we use into what the consumer pays will allow a steady move toward the most efficient, affordable and sustainable energy system.


The following is a link to the PowerPoint presentation (pdf file extension).