A Nissan Leaf Ad And A Word On Clean Power

Nissan Leaf

Nissan Leaf (Leading, Environmentally friendly, Affordable, Family car) begins its US roll out very soon and it will be available in some other world wide markets before a more widespread roll out. It is Nissan’s all electric car with a range of 100 miles (160 km). It has a top speed of over 140 km/h (87 mph). Its motor is rated at 80 kW (110 hp) and 280 Nm (210 lbft).

Some responses to electric cars can be paraphrased as such:

The electricity you are using to charge your car is produced in a non environmentally friendly manner, such as coal, so you are still polluting

That shouldn’t diminish the importance of electric cars and additionally it is the job of the consumer and the voter to make sure electricity comes from clean sources. That is done by voting for the politicians who would make sure clean energy happens and also those would make sure that electric cars, such as the Nissan Leaf, make it to dealerships near you in mass numbers and are not dismissed or removed from the market place altogether.

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Monitor Off Utility: Freeware That Conserves Energy

Monitor Off Utility is described by its author as

…is a free program that allows you to take control of your monitors built-in energy saving features

Even though all computers and operating systems come with power management features that allow a user to turn off a hard disk or put a computer into standby or hibernate mode it is often more beneficial, sometimes even more reliable, to turn off a monitor via a dedicated third party tool. Monitor Off achieves this energy and money saving task in a light weight and freeware download.


Monitor Off Utility Freeware

This small download, available both as an installer and a stand alone zip file, Monitor Off offers a user configurable method of turning off a monitor or if desired to activate a screensaver. Many combination of keys, like Ctrl+Alt+L, can be configured and a delay in seconds chosen to put any monitor into stand by mode. It is also possible to lock the work station – when in the stand by mode – to protect the computer from prying eyes while one is away.

Monitor Off makes the ever critical issue of power and energy savings just one bit easier and it is therefore worth having the program start with Windows and to have it remain in the system tray. It also supports several command line options that are documented in its Help menu. It requires the .NET Framework 2.0 or later and as of this post works on Windows 98, 2000, ME, XP and Vista.

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Green Tech: Google’s PowerMeter and Cisco’s EnergyWise

Reducing power usage and consumption is one of the best, easiest and immediate measures we can take while politicians wrangle through their greedy needs. Two large corporations that, along with IBM, have set up internal goals and business models based on selling and promoting green products are Google and Cisco. Two tools released by the aforementioned that have the power (pun intended?) to affect everyday electricity usage both at home and at work are Google’s PowerMeter and Cisco’s EnergyWise.

Google’s PowerMeter is a tool that Google has released free and made available to consumers in partnership with power utilities and government agencies. It provides probably the most useful way to monitor electricity usage. By giving access to and showing near real time stats on electricity usage it can help any body get a picture on when and how much power he or she is consuming at home and to help him or her plan and manage usage with a better understanding of what uses more and what uses less power. Google has a few partners lined up and more jurisdictions and local power producers will follow sooner or later. For this to work a local utility must install smart meters and also get on board with google.

Cisco’s EnergyWise is a set of tools that Cisco has integrated into its catalyst switches and routers with the aim of better monitoring their power usage and then managing their consumption and even turning them off when idle. This tool can manage, via set policies that include such criteria as device priority and location, other compatible devices (IP phones, PCs, etc.) on the network as well and using a new domain naming system to gather information on all those devices. All the information gathered can then create a bigger picture for analysis over time. It is an open architecture that enables other devices, built by others, to hook into it and make it more widely usable.

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Wind Power Storms Ahead

The world is slowly and surely pushing ahead with green and sustainable technologies. Wind power, using turbines, is growing and is one way to generate electricity using the second most abundant source of energy after sunlight.

Today there is news that China plans to increase its existing wind power output threefold by 2020. The original plan was to have a 30 Gigawatts output by then but that has been increased to 100 Gigawatts and plans to forge ahead even further after 2020.

China is one country that has realized coal is not the way to go and as the second most polluter in the world is taking some steps necessary now.

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