I don’t think I have ever appreciated a hotel as much as I did during a trip to Houston for a cleantech tradeshow Smartcool was exhibiting at a few years ago. The humidity was off the charts and it felt like I was slowly melting into the sidewalk going to and from the show each day. But the second I stepped into that hotel, everything was perfect.
The temperature was just right- not frigid, but certainly cool enough to be a fantastic antidote for the sweaty, sticky heat outside. My room was lit softly, a welcome relief from the glaring sun, but still bright enough to read and work comfortably. And best of all, I had full control over everything in my small empire- dimmers for the lights, temperature control and timers for the air conditioning.
These much-appreciated conveniences come at a steep price for hotels who spend an average of 6 to 10% of all operating costs on energy. Up to 75% of that is eaten up by space conditioning, with an average of 30% just for air conditioning. For hotels in hotter climates (like steamy Houston), air conditioning energy consumption is closer to 50% and represents a major burden on a hotel’s bottom line.
Did you know supermarkets have a dark side? And it’s not just the impulse-buy section at the checkout where you pass innocently by and somehow leave the store with a tabloid comparing bodies of celebrities you’ve never heard of, another “green” shopping bag (but this one matches my shoes!) and a 16th pack of gum that you will forget to use.
The real dark side of supermarkets is in the back of the store, where customers never get to venture. This is where an astronomical amount of energy gets eaten up in the day to day operation of the store.
In our last post in this series, we looked at the massive energy consumption of data centers and how Smartcool can help reduce this by improving the efficiency of the essential air conditioning systems.
This week we are going in the opposite direction, to the relatively humble family home- a building that has a tiny carbon footprint compared to some of the energy intensive businesses we hear about the most. Surely a home must be one of the easiest places to achieve energy efficiency improvements!
A data center has a massive demand for electricity to run all of its servers 24/7/365. A typical data center uses the same amount of electricity to run the servers as it does to run the air conditioning to keep those servers cool enough to function.
If left to their own devices, servers would overheat and fail very quickly, so a huge amount of air conditioning is required to maintain their operating temperature.
We’re back in Florida this week, taking a look at a particularly interesting sector there: non-profit organizations. Despite a deeply troubled economy, non-profits in Florida continue to provide invaluable programs and services to communities across the state; we’re going to take a look at how they do it and what it means for the Sunshine
As most parents are giddily aware of, this week marks the annual migration back to school for children and teens across the US and Canada. For the next ten months, kids will be ensconced in their daily routines, busy learning how to grow up to become mostly coherent, socially acceptable adults. Parents left with a delightfully quiet house during the day are not the only ones who will experience a major