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Dennis Roberts's picture
President, Energy Efficiency Done Right

About the author: Dennis G. Roberts President of Energy Efficiency Done Right Consultant to Gerson Lehrman Group and TGR Research for Energy Efficiency and Windows Past contributing author...

  • Member since 2005
  • 53 items added with 23,857 views
  • Mar 13, 2023

124 national governments and 1,500 major companies, representing $14 trillion in revenues, committing to adopting net zero emissions as targets. But according to the latest United Nation report, collectively we are not only failing to meet our objectives, we are falling further and further behind. The flagship UN report on climate change indicated that harmful carbon emissions from 2010-2019 have never been higher in human history, providing  proof that the world is on a “fast track” to disaster! To put is simply- “The end result of all these diversions has been the same — no effective mitigation.” Emissions today are 60 percent above the level of 1992, the year the world first agreed at the Rio Earth Summit to prevent “dangerous” climate change. ”Net zero is just the latest example of wishful thinking that effectively stops us critically reflecting on why we have failed,”

We are failing at our most important task for two reasons and both are lessons we should have learned and applied. Lesson one is we must “reduce before we produce”, As corporations and governments all our efforts must be focused on minimizing energy use. Our department of energy estimates that 30% of the energy we produce is wasted. Why are we focusing on renewables to produce more wasted energy? We could make a giant stride to meeting zero emission targets by eliminating that 30% of energy wasted THEN right size our renewables! Good energy efficiency projects could even pay for themselves THEN fund renewable energy projects!

The second reason we are failing badly is we are not focusing on solving our biggest energy waste source. Buildings and structures consume over 70% of all electricity produced and are responsible for about forty per cent of all emissions! They are also responsible for almost all infiltration which is the source to 6-9% of all energy use! Buildings and structures are also the source for most natural gas and heating oil consumption. A focused effort on reducing energy use in buildings would go a long way to minimizing that 30% of energy wasted.

The key to making a substantial reduction is wasted energy and infiltration reduction is building thermal and infiltration management. We need to focus on minimizing heat gain, heat loss, and infiltration and we already have great proven ways to do this. Glazing in buildings and structures is the “thermal hole” in the building envelope. We can now retrofit all glazing to make windows perform more like walls dramatically reducing solar, radiant, and uv heat gain and most heat loss in cold weather. Glass is conductive and convective and is , by far, the primary source of discomfort to building users. There are also very effective ceramic thermal coatings to make roofing and walls much more energy efficient with a similar technology..

We have in hand proven technology that will immediately provide the most effective emission reduction measure enacted and that can fund, in short time more efficiency or renewable energy measures. Let’s get our priorities straight and make meaningful emission reduction the norm.




John Cockerill's picture
John Cockerill on Mar 13, 2023

Unfortunately, like the environment, and energy policies are promoted for the benefit of the profits of the principals affecting the environment and energy production. Fossil fuels have sold their cost of goods sold to the environment.  Utilities and their suppliers are promoting solutions that profit electrical utilities, and the appliance manufacturers that will use their product. This direction of motives is instinctual to the balance sheet and spread sheet mentality of modern corporate management accounting. Profit support marketing and advertisements.  Conservation  does not have the cash advantage to compete.  The lemmings do not see the woods for the trees.

Dennis Roberts's picture
Thank Dennis for the Post!
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