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Letters to the editor 9/22
Published 9/22/2011
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We must be more conscious of energy consumption

Editor:

Energy conservation and going green is an ongoing buzz, but there are other ways beyond our three R’s that can make a difference.

In our power grid, it is most efficient for electricity to be produced at a constant rate because it is time consuming for our plants to heat up and to cool down. The only problem is that as a community we do not use power at a constant rate and so to compensate for the hours of high-energy demand, production is sky high. The excess electricity that is being produced cannot be harnessed or stored, so it is lost and wasted.

There are several ways we can approach this information. When we build new cities, we could build what is called a “smart grid.” This may work in the future, but what about now, in our community? We could change our existing power grid to be more efficient, but that sounds nearly impossible.

How about on a personal level? What if everyone knew the hours when the most energy was being used? Could we be troubled to make a conscious decision to set the dishwasher to run at 2 in the morning rather at 8 in the evening like the rest of the city? We can all make an individual effort to run our high-energy appliances at a time when there is less demand on the production of electricity. It is as simple as setting your washing machine to delay for 6 hours so it runs in the middle of the night. All we are doing is evening out our energy use to cover all 24 hours of the day, and you can help too. 

Tia Chen

freshman, electrical engineering


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