Tag Archive | LED light fixture

No Evidence of Residential Property Value

“This is the second of two major studies we have conducted on this topic [the first was published in 2009 — see below], and in both studies [using two different datasets] we find no statistical evidence that operating wind turbines have had any measureable impact on home sales prices,” says Ben Hoen, the lead author of the new report.

Hoen is a researcher in the Environmental Energy Technologies Division of Berkeley Lab.

The new study used a number of sophisticated techniques to control for other potential impacts on home prices, including collecting data that spanned well before the wind facilities’ development was announced to after they were constructed and operating. This allowed the researchers to control for any pre-existing differences in home sales prices across their sample and any changes that occurred due to the housing bubble.

This study, the most comprehensive to-date, builds on both the previous Berkeley Lab study as well a number of other academic and published U.S. studies, which also generally find no measureable impacts near operating turbines.

“Although there have been claims of significant property value impacts near operating wind turbines that regularly surface in the press or in local communities, strong evidence to support those claims has failed to materialize in all of the major U.S. studies conducted thus far,” says Hoen. “Moreover, our findings comport with the large set of studies that have investigated other potentially similar disamenities, such as high voltage transmission lines, land fills, and noisy roads, which suggest that widespread impacts from wind turbines would be either relatively small or non-existent.”

The report was authored by Ben Hoen (Berkeley Lab), Jason P. Brown (formerly USDA now Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City), Thomas Jackson (Texas A & M and Real Property Analytics), Ryan Wiser (Berkeley Lab), Mark Thayer (San Diego State University) and Peter Cappers (Berkeley Lab). The research was supported by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy.

Read the full story at scfwindturbine web! If you love wind turbines, welcome to contact us!

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Wind compromise pleases no one

The Howard County Commissioners learned last week that a compromise means little to people who are set in their ways. A slate of changes to the county’s wind farm economic development agreement was met with total disdain from protestors who want the proposed Wildcat Wind Farm killed off completely.

The commissioners had endured a prolonged protest from the anti-wind crowd that began in April, and it appeared that the remonstration finally had eroded the officials’ resolve.

“We’ve heard testimony and comments and concerns for a number of months now,” said Commissioner Tyler Moore. “After the visits and letters and emails and phone calls, I think we’re in a position to bring some closure to the discussion and move forward.”

Moore said the proposed changes are designed to best serve the Howard County community as a whole.

“We do not take this decision lightly,” said Moore. “We know the concerns and know there are arguments on both sides of the issues. In conversations with leaseholders and residents in favor and opposed to the project as well as with officials from (wind developer) E.On, I think we have come to what we feel is a position we can move forward.”

The amendment changes setbacks for the windmills to 1,500 feet from a non-participating resident’s property. The existing setback of 1,250 feet will continue to be in place for participating residents. Sound level limits will be reduced to 50 decibels, down from 55 decibels, for non-participating residents.

E.On also will be required to install FAA-approved light shields atop the windmills to reduce visibility from the ground. Shadow flicker limits will be extended to include any time that the windmills are in operation. And the county will commit to establish appropriate wetlands setbacks as determined by the county surveyor and the county drainage board.

The wind turbine project will be required to make additional payments to Howard County equal to 10 percent of the granted 2012 abatement — approximately $750,000 — and the commissioners have committed to investigating ways to use that money to guarantee property values for affected properties.

“Today, there is no county in the U.S. that has structured such a deal,” said Commissioner Paul Wyman. “That will take some legal work, but we believe that if the project goes forward, we will be able to find a way to target these dollars toward the wind farm area.”

The proposal was rejected in its entirety by the protestors,

with not a single point conceded as an improvement or resolution. Various speakers argued that the windmill setbacks should be determined by the distance to the property line, not the living structure. They also insisted that the light shields would not be sufficient, and the decibel levels are nowhere near the 25-30 decibel limit they prefer.

The commissioners passed the amendment despite the protests and then went into recess so that a public hearing could be held for the Howard County Drainage Board. When the commissioners reconvened, however, they had a parting gift for the crowd — a moratorium on all future wind farm projects in Howard County. More information about the program is available on the web site at scfwindturbine.com.

Tim Flannery derides wind farm sickness

Speaking at a nurses’ forum yesterday about the relationship between climate change and health, Professor Flannery fended off a question from a regional Victorian nurse who said she supported wind energy but was seeing many patients with health problems attributed to a nearby wind farm.

“What I’ve read and experienced is that there are no proven health impacts directly from wind-related noise,” Professor Flannery said. “What we do see is people who are adversely affected by it through perhaps stress or tension or worry.”

Professor Flannery said he had asked a Canberra man who had leased part of his land for six turbines whether he had seen any health effects from the wind farm.

“He said, ‘Yeah mate, people get sick, sick with envy,” Professor Flannery said. “He said $60,000 a year (was) coming straight into his farm and people next door can see the turbines every day.

“I’m not saying that’s the whole story, by any means, but I think from what I’ve read the health impacts are more (at) that social level rather than anything caused directly by the noise.”

The nurse who asked the question described herself as an environmental activist who had supported plans to build the Hepburn wind farm, a community-owned two-turbine project near Daylesford, northwest of Melbourne.

“As a nurse I experience lots of people around that wind farm having very negative health impacts from it,” she said. “In the enthusiasm for bringing in alternative technology, how can we ensure those affected get social justice? Whilst I support wind, I have to say that I don’t support the Hepburn wind farm because they failed to address the health issues of those affected by it.”

The Coalition has pledged to hold an inquiry into wind farm noise if elected in September, after a Senate committee last year discounted health claims but did not dispute that some people living near turbines felt unwell.

A University of Sydney study released this month concluded wind farm-associated health problems were “communicated” diseases of a psychogenic origin, based on non-physical causes such as fear and anxiety.

The study drew its data on the number of people complaining about health problems from wind farm developers, submissions to government public inquiries and news media articles.

Sarah Laurie, the chief executive of the Waubra Foundation, dedicated to wind farm health issues, said Professor Flannery’s comments were “appalling”.

“We’re talking about families who have been driven out of their homes, we’re talking about elderly widows who are unable to sleep in their home,” she said. “I’m disgusted and appalled at his comments and his ignorance.”

Professor Flannery said the Climate Commission would produce a report later this year, in conjunction with the Australian Medical Association, on wind farms and their health effects.

A spokeswoman later clarified that the commission “hoped” to produce a report on wind energy, with a section on health.

Georgia Power takes major

Southern Alliance for Clean Energy applauds Georgia Power’s announcement yesterday that it will seek approval to retire several of its least economical, oldest, and dirtiest electric generators – 1820 MW of coal-fired units, plus 241 MW of oil-fired power. We’re glad the company is finally seeking retirement of these units; the decision is welcome news for ratepayers and for public health in Georgia, and indicates a very positive step toward decreasing Georgia’s reliance on coal.

Georgia Power’s own studies in 2011 showed that these coal-fired units aren’t economical to run, though it put off retiring them at that time. The Union of Concerned Scientists labeled them among those “Ripe for Retirement” in its November 2012 report highlighting the nation’s most uneconomic coal-fired units, along with several other coal-fired generators the company currently plans to convert to burn gas or upgrade with pollution controls (look out for an upcoming blog with our perspectives on retiring these units instead).

Coal plant retirements are an important step toward modernizing Georgia Power’s system and cleaning up its generation mix. We hope they will be accompanied by an increased commitment to energy efficiency and renewable energy when Georgia Power submits its requests to the Public Service Commission on January 31, 2013, as part of its updated Integrated Resource Plan, the long-term energy resource scheme it files every three years.

Georgia Power will request permission from the Public Service Commission to decertify (officially retire) the remaining two generators at Plant Harlee Branch near Milledgeville (units 1&2 were approved for decertification last year and will be taken offline later this year), all three coal-fired units at Plant Kraft near Savannah, and the five oldest units of the seven at Plant Yates (the company wants to convert the remaining two to burn natural gas). It would also retire an oil-fired generator at Plant Kraft and two more at Plant McManus, located on Georgia’s coast.

The coal-fired units on the retirement list are among the oldest in the nation – at 44-63 years old, they’re significantly older than the 30-year expected lifetime of a typical coal-fired boiler unit. Because of their age and design, these units are less efficient at converting coal to electricity than more modern generators, and therefore are only utilized at 34% of their capacity. It’s an inefficient use of a generation resource that should be replaced. The units also lack key modern pollution controls. Georgia Power is requesting that these plants go offline completely by April 16, 2015, the date by which plants must comply with EPA’s new mercury pollution standards (known as MATS).

The one exception is Plant Kraft, for which the company plans to request a further year of service under a one-year MATS compliance extension. SACE’s Executive Director, Stephen Smith, told the Savannah Morning News: “I don’t want say that’s unreasonable; I think, though, in actuality it’s a reflection that if they hadn’t spent so much time fighting the regulations and EPA and spent more time engineering and accepting it was the right move for ratepayers and the environment, they could’ve been on schedule.”

We hope that over the next two years Georgia Power will accommodate workers at these plants, including preparing them to work on cleaner technologies like wind and solar. Both technologies have established a manufacturing foothold in Georgia that is expected to expand, especially if Georgia Power increases its use of these technologies.

LED lighting saves on coal use

I am not sure why Republicans, including presidential challenger Mitt Romney, seem to favor inefficient lighting systems that waste energy. Saving money and saving natural resources would seem to be a conservative approach.

When it comes to energy, I am trying to be a conservative, and that’s not always easy in a 112-year-old home originally heated by chunks of coal in fireplaces.

A few years ago, I tightened up the attic and had insulation blown in. And I had mostly converted to compact fluorescent light bulbs.

This weekend, the old house was introduced to its first LED light bulbs — even more efficient that CFLs, with the ability for dimming and no mercury.

We bought six — five 40 watt bulbs for a dining room chandelier. I had tried the CFLs but they burned out quickly and flickered strangely because the fixture was on a dimmer switch. The CFL light was also too harsh there.

The LED’s are fantastic. Combined with a couple of candles, to further soften the mood, they will allow for romantic dinners once again — without as much guilt about lives or landscapes lost to coal mining. (Both types of resources, human and natural, are too valuable to waste.)

Each of those cost $9.97 each. But, it seems I’ll never have to replace them again.

We spent $25 on a 60 watt LED. That felt more like a stretch. But, it goes into a floor lamp where we had an incandescent bulb that put off so much heat (and wasted energy) that one could warm their hands after working outside in the winter with no gloves.

The new lighting promises to save hundreds of dollars in LG&E bills over their lifetimes.

And I love thinking how the workers who built our house in Clifton atop a limestone block foundation could never have dreamed of such technological wonders, just 20 years after Thomas Edison had begun to commercialize the incandescent electric light bulb.

Vision X Lighting today announced the launch of the Optimus Series LED Driving Lights, advancing lighting technology to the next level. Utilizing Vision X Lighting’s all new proprietary IRIS Reflector Technology, the Optimus series provides the ultimate focus for long range lighting by producing 693 ft. of usable light from a single 3.5″ tall, 10-watt LED.

Compared to a standard 55 watt low beam headlight reach of 88 ft. and a standard 65 watt high beam reach of 153 ft, the Optimus propels light further than any single 10-watt LED light fixture in existence. Optimus lights also feature Vision X Lighting’s Prime Drive technology for integrated thermal management and dimming capabilities.

The Optimus Series lights are available in two models, a single 10-watt LED version and a dual 10-watt LED version, known as the Optimus Single and Optimus Dual. All Optimus lights feature a waterproof & rugged die-cast aluminum housing, industrial grade waterproof deustch connector, adjustable trunnion bracket mounting, and 11-32V DC multi-volt input.

A miningindustrial version of the Optimus is also available featuring a reinforced single stud fixture mount. These key features allow the Optimus Series to be used in almost any application including: automotive, motorcycle, ATV/UTV, marine, mining, industrial and more.

What took an 8″ Off Road Light or 60-watts of LED is now achievable using a compact 3.5″ light that can mount anywhere. The days of having to mount a light bar, brush guard, or add unnecessary brackets are over. Optimus lights are also available in kits as OE Fog Light replacements.

The Optimus Series starts at just $129 for a single light, and is available in two light kits complete with a wiring harness for only $249. The Optimus single is available this week, and all models are expected to be shipping early September. Find out why Vision X Lighting employees coined this light “Project Light Cannon”.