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Energy Newsbriefs Blog

This current awareness service is prepared by the WSU Energy Program Library with funding from the U.S. Department of Energy State Energy Program. This information is provided for energy professionals and interested members of the public to highlight recent energy-related news, articles, and reports that discuss energy efficiency, energy conservation, and renewable sources of energy in engineering and policy circles.

 


Quiz: Know Your Power Plants

U.S. Department of Energy, Mar. 3, 2015.
http://www.energy.gov/articles/quiz-know-your-power-plants

"This quiz will test your knowledge of electricity generation in the U.S. Each map shows existing U.S. power plants for a specific fuel source, scaled by the plant's production capacity. See if you can guess the energy source by how it's distributed across the country!"

Case in Point: Symphony Hall Cooling Tower Hits the Right Notes

Engineered Systems, Mar. 2015.
http://www.esmagazine.com/articles/97021-symphony-hall-cooling-tower-hits-the-right-notes

"In an effort to eliminate disruptive airflow noises during performances, the Symphony Hall at The Woodruff Arts Center in Atlanta installed cooling towers designed with the benefit of quieter operation."

Energy Optimization In Existing Buildings

Engineered Systems, Mar. 2015, by Mohamed Abaza.
http://www.esmagazine.com/articles/97017-energy-optimization-in-existing-buildings

"The importance of focusing on energy optimization in existing buildings is crucial to reducing energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions. In the U.S., existing buildings represent 85-90% of entire building stock (75+ billion sq ft). Buildings are responsible for an estimated 40% of U.S. primary energy use, 72% of electricity consumption, 39% of carbon emissions, and1 13.6% of potable water consumption."

Comprehensive Study Shows Decreasing Emissions from Local Natural Gas Distribution Systems

American Gas Association News Release, Mar. 31, 2015.
https://www.aga.org/news/news-releases/comprehensive-study-shows-decreasing-emissions-local-natural-gas-distribution

"A study published today in Environmental Science & Technology led by a team from Washington State University (WSU) found that emissions from local natural gas distribution systems in cities and towns throughout the U.S. have decreased in the past 20 years, to levels 36 to 70 percent lower than current estimates. This reduction reflects significant upgrades at metering and regulating stations, improvements in leak detection and maintenance activities and replacement of older pipeline materials."

Making the Switch from Coal to Biomass [CHP]

Cogeneration and On-site Power Production, Mar. 2015, by Thomas Krause and Yaqoub Al-Khasawneh.
http://digital.cospp.com/cospp/20150304?sub_id=yZyIjhafYfpz&folio=24#pg26

A case study of a Danish power station: "With specific modifications, a bituminous coal-firing CHP system can be converted to operate with wood or other biomass pellets."

Thermal Bypasses Can Thwart the Best HVAC Systems

IE3 (Indoor Environment & Energy Efficiency), Mar 12, 2015, by Allison Bailes III.
http://www.ie3media.com/thermal-bypasses-can-thwart-best-hvac-systems/

"It seems so simple. There’s outside, and there’s inside. The walls, ceilings, and floors that separate the cold outside from the warm inside should be the only surfaces that rob heat from a home. Interior walls have conditioned space on both sides, so they shouldn’t be a problem, right?"

ACCA Initiates New Standard On HVAC System Design For Energy Efficient Homes

Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA) Press Release, Mar. 23, 2015.
http://www.acca.org/release/acca-initiates-new-standard-hvac-system-design-energy-efficient-homes/

"The Air Conditioning Contractors of America Educational Institute (ACCA-EI) Standards Task Team (STT) announces the initiation of development of BSR/ACCA 16 Manual E-201x, “HVAC System Design for Energy Efficient Homes” as a new industry standard. This standard will provide procedures to design/select HVAC systems and equipment for low-load homes that will achieve satisfactory indoor conditions with lower equipment capacity; i.e., resolving ventilation and moisture requirements/issues with low air volume systems while addressing occupant comfort, health, and safety."

White House Announces New Executive Order To Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions in the Federal Government

U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), EERE, FEMP Press Release, Mar. 19, 2015.
http://energy.gov/eere/femp/articles/white-house-announces-new-executive-order-reduce-greenhouse-gas-emissions-federal

"The White House today announced that President Obama issued a new executive order that will cut the federal government's greenhouse gas emissions 40% over the next decade (from 2008 levels) and increase the share of electricity the federal government consumes from renewable sources to 30%. According to the White House, the President’s executive order will build on the federal government’s progress in reducing emissions to promote more sustainability actions over the next 10 years."

Industrial Companies Earn State Energy Efficiency Awards [WA]

Washington State University (WSU) News, Mar. 25, 2015.
https://news.wsu.edu/2015/03/25/industrial-companies-earn-state-energy-efficiency-awards/#.VRMFnfnF_Tp

"Gov. Jay Inslee today honored nine industrial companies in Washington for outstanding leadership in improved energy performance at the third annual Washington Industrial Energy Leaders awards ceremony in Olympia."

EPA Announces 70 Top Performing Energy Star Certified Manufacturing Plants in 29 States/ Across the Country

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) News Release, Mar. 9, 2015.
http://yosemite.epa.gov/opa/admpress.nsf/bd4379a92ceceeac85257359004
00c27/24ff1fb1bcd5355785257e03005d9f29


"The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced today that 70 manufacturing plants have achieved Energy Star certification for their superior energy performance in 2014. Together, these manufacturing plants saved a record amount of energy, cut their energy bills by $725 million, and reduced greenhouse gas emissions by more than 8 million metric tons –equivalent to the annual total energy use of more than 650,000 households."

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The Energy Newsbriefs Blog is a continuation of the weekly Energy Newsbriefs. Please bookmark this site and return frequently. Although we will not be accepting comments from within the Blog, we would be happy to hear from you by email at library@energy.wsu.edu