About 6 months ago I looked into getting a reclaimed water hookup for my sprinklers. My county offers the option to hook up to reclaimed water if you have the work done to connect the line to your system. I considered this for 2 reasons. First of all my county has cut our regular watering days down to 1 day per week. St. Augustine grass just doesn’t want to survive with water only once a week. The second reason is that reclaimed water is much less expensive than potable water. The initial investment was about $500 for the county and the plumber that installed the lines to my system. So far I have saved at least that much. My water bill has been cut in half since the installation.
Now I understand that some people consider having a lawn in the first place is wasteful and unnecessary. Some people have rocks or wood chips as a lawn, but for my community only a regular grass lawn is allowed.
This is just one way to create more money power for yourself.
It seems lately that everywhere you turn someone is encouraging you to get rid of your car or appliances in exchange for a newer, more fuel efficient or energy saving model. Even with the government rebates, there is still an argument to be made for keeping a clunker though. First of all if your car or appliance is paid in full, you would then be looking at paying cash outright, or financing your purchase with interest when you were already in a good position financially by not having a payment. You may need to divert funds that could already be allocated to other bills or to savings. There are also other factors to consider such as depreciation of a new vehicle, insurance rates, and manufacturing costs.
I’ve read that 25% of a cars carbon dioxide emissions come from the manufacturing process. Since your used car has already gone through the manufacturing phase, it produces no additional environmental demand. Even though it may get less gas mileage, driving it responsibly arguably produces less pollution than purchasing new.
FedEx announced the first all-electric FedEx delivery trucks in the United States. This is an expansion of its existing alternative-energy vehicle fleet. They are starting with 4 electric trucks that are optimized for electric operation from the wheels up. They are slated to hit the road in the Los Angeles area starting in June 2010, joining more than 1,800 alternative-energy vehicles already in service for FedEx around the world.
A pair of electric vehicles are being assembled in Indiana. Another pair of electric vehicles is being purchased from a different manufacturer for delivery to the Los Angeles area later in 2010. Both sets of electric vehicles are designed with a range that allows many FedEx Express couriers to make a full eight-hour shift of deliveries before their vehicles need recharging.
This news will make my dog very happy as the engine noise from the current vehicles drive him crazy.
We have been working on converting a 1976 Porsche 912 to all electric drive. The project began two years ago and was finally completed last week and is on the road in Tallahassee Florida. This Porsche is powered by an 11 inch diameter electric motor and 85 lithium ion batterys. We plan to add more photos and infomation about the car to the www.mymoneypower com website soon.
Note: This photo was take at a Las Vegas car show where we had the car on display.
One of the greenest ways to cut back on your office costs is to have your employees work from home. The overhead of the building goes way down, while email and teleconferencing (both of which are often free) make it easy to stay in touch. Try to work out a plan so that the office can be closed one day a week for maximum savings, or maybe a rotating schedule can help you cut back. But once you’re away from headquarters, keep all the same good green practices in mind to save money in your own home office. You won’t use your vehicle as much if you work from home saving you money on fuel and you will likely eat lunch at home saving even more money.
When I was a kid one way, other than cutting lawns, to make a little extra money was to recycle cans and bottles. I spent hours stomping aluminum cans down to a 1/4 inch to make more fit in the bag. My parents helped by taking me to the recycling center to turn them in. Today that concept is still in place. There are more and more recycling centers around that take glass, aluminum, and scrap metal in exchange for money. But now you are able to recycle things for money that in the old days would go to the landfill.
John Hancock and Metlife are financing the construction of the largest solar energy plant in Colorado. Constuction will begin this spring with operations expected to begin by the end of the year.
“MetLife recognizes the importance of investing in renewable energy ventures that will have a positive impact on the environment,” said Steve Kandarian, executive vice president and chief investment officer for MetLife. “This project builds upon the more than $1 billion that MetLife has already invested in renewable energy projects. It also demonstrates our commitment to support growth in the solar energy market by making it easier and more affordable for businesses and public entities to benefit from solar electricity.”
“The project finance teams at John Hancock and our parent company, Manulife Financial, have a portfolio of renewable energy financings that includes more than $2 billion of projects in the U.S. and Canada. We look forward to the successful completion of the solar power plant in Alamosa later this year,” said John Anderson, senior managing director and head of John Hancock’s Power and Infrastructure Group.
The first electric boat was designed in 1892. Since then many individuals and manufacturers have created their own designs for all types of boats. A regular gas or diesel powered vessel has several drawbacks. The engines are typically loud, they consume fuel which is costly, and they pollute the environment with their emmissions. Today there are companies that produce electric powered vessels from the size of a rowboat to a container ship. One company has a 20 foot boat the runs on 4 batteries that, when fully charged, can last 10 hours of use without a recharge. They also have another available option…solar panels. The panels go on top of the bimini and continuously charge the batteries so the vessel is completely self sustained. Once I attended a boat show and saw an oval shaped electric boat that had leather covered seating all the way around the inside of the boat. It also had a cover or top made of fiberglass that was held up with 4 or 6 stainless steel poles that, with the flip of a switch, lowered into the gunnels of the boat. The top provided shade for the passengers, had built in lights, and kept the boat dry and clean when not in use. Pretty cool.
By now you have probably heard about the Going Green craze that has hit the public over the last couple years. Reducing your carbon foot print is certainly a noble cause, but what does it actually take to Go Green? Do I really have to trade in my car for hybrid? Do I have to go run out and buy new energy efficient appliances? While all those would certainly be considered Going Green, they are not practical solutions to get started on the green path. It does not take drastic lifestyle changes to go green and even simple changes in your day to day can result in a monumental environmental impact. Here are a few simple ways to Go Green that I implement everyday to help reduce my carbon footprint and save some money in the process.
When I go out on my boat into saltwater I pass many marinas that have sailboats and have noticed that many of them today have a wind turbine. These turbines generate power for the boat from the wind for free outside the inital investment of about $1000. These turbines are virtually silent depending on the model and can generate enough power to charge the batteries even when sitting still. With the turbine you could be offshore as long as you want given your food and water holds out and have enough power to crank your outboard, run the radio, coffee maker and other appliances on board without worrying about your battery life. What a great invention.