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The problem with energy today is that it is too expensive and most of it pollutes the environment. Most of our energy comes from fossil fuels which are not renewable and pollute the environment, not to mention stink. Prices on gasoline keep on rising and so do the S.D.G.&E. bills. These are the two main energy sources in our area It’s not like we can shop around for energy. Gasoline prices are sky high and prices only vary a little between gas stations. “Average gas prices nationwide are at 1.54 per gal regular unleaded”(Chicago Union Tribune). In reality there is an abundant supply of oil in the U.S. but I don’t think it’s the best source of power we have available today, for example, internal combustion ingenious need lube oil, water and a number of other things. They also get dirty, produce a lot of heat and need a lot of matenence. Then there is the waste issue. What do we do with all the used oil? We could recycle it, but not all of it gets recycled. Some of that oil gets into the environment and we also have to recycle all of those used parts, like oil filters. “According to the U.S. geological survey current proved or probable reserves could sustain world oil consumption for 63 to 95 years”(www.public-policy.org). All of that oil would be burned into our atmosphere.
My first solution is pretty simple; cutting down on energy consumption by whatever means available. These days we have some options in which we can use to save on energy. One thing I’ve found to save gasoline in automobiles are the HyCO systems. “The abbreviation stands for hydrocarbon (Petrol-fuels) Oyxegenator” (www.eagle-research .com). I think this is a pretty good idea, you can get about 5 more miles to the gallon with the basic system. There are other systems that can be used in conjunction with this system for even better performance. Why not carpool, that always works? Nowadays they have cars that get better mileage than ever. I’ve even heard of about 60 mpg before. Also taking the freeway more is another way to save gas. In the home you can also buy light that don’t use as much energy as the conventional light bulb. They make those florescent bulbs that are small and fit into regular light sockets. They are a little bit more expensive but pay for them selves considering they last a lot longer.
My second solution is alternative sources of energy. We could live like the Amish, not! That’s not an option for me. There are plenty of other forms of energy being discovered. Hydro-electric power is a good source if there is a river nearby. In the dessert they also use windmills for power. I have seen them for sale in the back of popular science magazine. The city could use giant solar energy stations to produce power, instead of burning a bunch of fuel which seems kind of old fashioned to me. “We have been producing electric cars for quite some time now and they are getting very efficient” (popular science magazine).
My third solution is producing our own power right at home. It is possible to buy systems that can power a house by solar power and even have rechargeable batteries that can power a house for a week without the sun. The systems cost around 5,000 dollars and up but are well worth it, especially if you live in a hot place where there is a lot of sun. No worries about using to much power because it’s free once you get the system. The systems are virtually matainence free and your power won’t be knocked out by storms etc. Especially good if you live in a remote area were there is no utility anyway. If you live in the woods and happen to be near a stream then you could try the hydro-electric approach. These ideas could also be used in conjunction with normal utility systems so that the power draw would be divided between the two systems, thus shelling out less money to S.D.G.&E. or other provider.
In conclusion I think that solution B. is the best for the community and solution A. is best for me personally. I think that in the future people will have a option either to be connected to the power the city provides. Could be fossil fuel based or something new later, or producing our own energy. I really like the Idea of gathering and being in control of our own energy. After all it’s essentially free and It’s everywhere all we have to do is harness it. For now I think it would be best to hold off on the last solution and wait till they develop the system a little more and then when you fell that they are efficient and cost worthy then go ahead and buy one. I think having to give an arm and a leg for electricity is ridiculous since it is free and there is only one provider. I just think they should get the technology out more so we can use it.
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