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Replacement Fuels Are A Reality


Switching from expensive imported oil to alternative fuels has moved from a far-off dream to an achievable reality. Today, more than a dozen gasoline alternatives are in various stages of development. Taken separately or together, they promise a path away from the imported-oil addiction that squeezes our pocketbooks, pollutes our air and imperils our national security.

In fact, at least four alternatives are not only already in use, but have what it takes to put us on the road to permanently breaking oil’s death grip on America’s drivers. What’s more, market forces have the potential to mainstream each of these technologies within the decade if commercial and regulatory barriers are removed.

Ethanol – Derived from plant materials, ethanol can be a cheaper, cleaner alternative to the gasoline that fuels our vehicles. Much of the gasoline sold at the pumps is already up to 10 percent ethanol and an increasing number of flex-fuel vehicles run on fuel that is up to 85 percent ethanol. Most ethanol in the U.S. is made from corn, yet ethanol can be made from any biomass—including garbage.

Methanol – Also known as wood alcohol, methanol is cheaper, cleaner and less flammable than gasoline. Made from both fossil fuels and renewable resources, it is used in race cars and in emerging economies such as China. Methanol fell out of favor in the U.S. in recent years, when the alternative fuel debate settled on ethanol, but it is getting a second look as oil prices continue to climb.

Natural Gas – Most of the natural gas used in the U.S. is going to homes and businesses, but it also powers more than 100,000—and counting—vehicles. It’s popular with fleets and buses: non-toxic, odorless, clean-burning and cheaper than gasoline and diesel. And consumers can buy a natural gas-powered Honda Civic that is already on the road.

Electricity – Electric vehicles—whether hybrid, plug-in or pure electric—are visible signs that the age of alternatives has arrived. EV-gas hybrid sales topped 2 million in 2011, and, while still modest, production of all-electric vehicles, such as the Nissan Leaf and the high-end Teslas and Fiskers, is steadily growing. As more models become available for wider markets, charging stations have spread and technological advances have improved traveling ranges.

Domestic Oil – It is both unrealistic and unwise to discontinue oil drilling in the U.S. When you are starving, you don’t go on a diet! We have substantial petroleum reserves that remain untapped, and these should be exploited to reduce our dependence on foreign oil. At the same time, our domestic oil supplies cannot satisfy our transportation needs, either now or in the future. We need to supplement these with cheaper, cleaner American-made fuels.

http://www.fuelfreedom.org/the-real-foreign-oil-problem/replacement-fuels/

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JAKARTA – Pemerintah menerbitkan Peraturan Menteri Energi Sumberdaya Daya Mineral (ESDM) No 2 Tahun 2011 tentang Penugasan kepada PT PLN (Persero) untuk membeli tenaga listrik dari pembangkit listrik panas bumi, serta memberikan jalan bagi pengembang untuk tetap menjalankan proyek tersebut.

“Dengan diterbitkannya Peraturan Menteri ini, maka ada kepastian bagi pengembang produksi listriknya akan dibeli oleh PLN sesuai dengan harga lelang,” ujar Direktur Panas Bumi Kementerian Energi Sugiharto Harsoprayitno dalam sosialisasi peraturan tersebut di Jakarta, Senin (21/2/2011).

Dalam peraturan itu menetapkan harga patokan tertinggi sebesar 9,70 sen dolar atau sekira Rp900 per Kwh. “Jadi jika hasil harga lelang di bawah 9,7 sen dolar harus dibeli oleh PLN, untuk yang harganya di atas dilakukan negosiasi terlebih dahulu,” ujar dia.

Saat ini Pertamina telah terdapat 13 Wilayah Kerja Pertambangan (WKP) yang mendapatkan Izin Usaha Pertambangan (IUP). Tiga WKP yaitu Liki Pinangawan Muaralaboh, Gn. Rajabasa, dan Atadei dengan harga lelang di bawah 9,7 sen dolar per KWH. Sedangkan WKP Sokoria mematok harga 9,7 sen dolar per KWH, sehingga PLN wajib bernegosiasi.

Sementara itu, PT Supreme Energy Muaralaboh mematok harga 9,4 sen dolar per kWh, Gunung Rajabasa Lambung (220 MW) oleh PT Supreme Energy Rajabasa dengan harga 9,5 sen dolar per kWh, dan Atadei (5 Mw) oleh PT Westindo Hutama Karya.

“Semuanya lelang di bawah 9,7 sen dolar per Kwh, sehingga PLN wajib menerima harga listrik tanpa negosiasi,” tegas Sugiharto.

Ketiga WKP tersebut hanya tinggal menanti persetujuan dari Menteri Energi. “Sedangkan untuk WKP Sokoria masih wajib dilakukan negosiasi karena harga listrik hasil lelang di atas 9,7 sen dolar per KWh,” tambahnya.

Selain itu masih ada enam WKP yaitu Cisolok Cisukarame, Gunung Tampomas, Tangkuban Perahu I, uNgaran, Jaboi, dan Jailolo dengan total kapasitas 277 Megawatt yang belum mendapatkan persetujuan penunjukan langsung dari Dirjen Ketenagalistrikan, dan sedang diupayakan oleh Dirjen Energi Baru Terbarukan dalam pengusulan penugasan ke Menteri Energi dengan tembusan kepada PLN.

Tiga WKP lainnya yaitu, Sorik Merapi dengan kapasitas pengembangan sebesar 55 MW masih dalam proses Pengadilan Tata Usaha Negara di Medan. Wilayah Kerja Pertambangan Rantau Dedap dengan kapasitas pengembangan 220 MW akan diusulkan untuk mendapat penugasan dari Menteri Energi.

“Terakhir, Suoh-Sekincau dengan kapasitas 220 Megawatt yang tidak masuk dalam daftar proyek akan dilakukan negosiasi,” tegas Sugiharto. (adn)(ade)

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JAKARTA – Staf Ahli Badan Kebijakan Fiskal Kemenkeu Singgih Riphat menjelaskan jika seharusnya subsidi untuk listrik yang berasal dari panas bumi (geothermal) lebih besar dibandingkan dengan subsidi listrik yang berasal dari bahan bakar minyak (BBM).
"PLPB"
“Saya maunya subsidi untuk geothermal itu lebih besar daripada subsidi listrik dengan minyak,” katanya saat ditemui di sela “Green Investments Summit 2010” di Grand Hyatt, Jakarta, Selasa (13/7/2010).

Lebih lanjut, ia mengatakan jika subsidi untuk listrik geothermal itu sudah ada dalam APBN tahun ini, yakni sudah termasuk ke dalam subsidi listrik secara keseluruhan. “Namun saya tidak tahu persis jumlahnya. Jadi intinya gini, semua listrik itu sudah disubsidi, termasuk geothermal,” paparnya.

Sekarang ini, dia menjelaskan jika pihaknya tengah dalam proses perhitungan besaran subsidi tersebut. Beberapa dari komponen perhitungan tersebut juga katanya sudah masuk dalam APBNP 2009.

“Jadi, misalnya harga yang harus dibeli pemerintah itu USD9,7 sen per kwh, nanti sampai ke masyarakat Rp500 per kwh misalnya, nanti bisa dibayar masyarakat Rp300 per kwh. Kalau yang seperti ini pasti segera. Kita ini kan unitnya baru, subsidi sedang dalam perhitungan. Pasti dapat subsidi, tapi seberapa besar, itu yang sedang dibicarakan. Paling tidak sebagian sudah masuk ke APBN 2011, tapi belum semua,” jelasnya.

Dia berharap, jika pada 2011 mendatang masalah subsidi ini sudah jelas, khusunya untuk listrik geothermal.

“Misalnya, geothermal yang sudah berproduksi nanti seberapa besar yang akan kita tanggung, mudah-mudahan tahun depan sudah bisa jelas. Bahkan, tahun yang sudah berjalan sekarang, kita kasih subsidi untuk alat-alat yang mengonversi dari pemakaian bensin ke gas, tapi kita belum tahu alatnya apa. Kita tanya ke Kementerian atau Lembaga, tapi belum tahu. PPN-nya ditanggung pemerintah. Misalnya, perusahaan membeli Rp10 juta, nanti kami beli seharga Rp6 juta, jadi mereka kan jadi mudah memakainya,” papar dia.(wdi)

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Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Factsheets: Find out what you can do individually, locally, and state-wide to deal with climate change and move towards renewable energy….

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more about “Public Citizen | The Case for Renewab…“, posted with vodpod

 

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50 Way GO Green!!!!

HOME
If you can’t afford a new home or a large remodeling project, there are still plenty of things you can do to be environmentally friendly and save money.

1. Update your lighting
Make it a policy to buy energy efficient compact fluorescent light bulbs. You can now get a variety of shapes and perfectly match the color hue and lighting for each room. They look good and use at least two-thirds less power than regular lighting.

2. Buy Energy Star
When you are ready to buy new home appliances, buy smart. Check for the Energy Star rating. These more efficient machines can reduce your utility bill as much as 30-percent. Deb Snoonian, Managing Editor of Plenty Magazine said, “Energy Start is a program sponsored by the EPA and the Department of Energy. Essentially, it’s a way for them to recognize the companies and the products that are most energy-efficient. On average, an Energy Start appliance — whether it’s a computer monitor, a refrigerator, a washer or dryer — is going to be about 30-percent more energy efficient.”

3. Wall Warts
Those clunky power adaptors draw energy from the wall all the time. Unplug them individually or attach them to a power strip and turn off the whole switch when not in use. Around 75-percent of all electricity in a home comes from appliances that are turned off, but are still plugged in. Make sure that you only have those appliances plugged in where you’re actually using the electricity. You will save on bills and we as a society will save on energy.

4. Dormant Appliances
Practically every appliance uses electricity even when it’s switched off. Unless it needs power to retain programming memory, hit the switch. Better yet, make it a family practice. Amy Schachter, an Upper East Side resident, said, “My family reminds each other constantly. That’s partly money, partly the fact that we know now that we’re creating energy usage that is totally unnecessary.”

5. Energy Audit
You can find out how much energy your home uses each year with an energy audit. Many utility providers and state energy departments will audit your home free or at low cost to help you find ways to be more energy efficient.

6. Insulate
Make sure your ducts are properly insulated and install weather-stripping around windows and doors for a better seal. Tax credits on efficiency-increasing heating and cooling equipment make now a great time to upgrade. And remember, insulation pays for itself year round. Cascio Construction President Michael Cascio said, “It translates into the heat or the air conditioning that you’re going to use, and certainly you want to retain whatever heating system or whatever cooling system you’re using, you want to retain that inside the house.”

7. House Plants
Invest in large, live houseplants that will help keep your indoor air fresher.

8. Save Water
Place a water bottle filled with liquid or pennies into your toilet’s water tank. This will cause the tank to use less water every time you flush. Plenty Magazine Managing Editor Deb Snoonian estimates it wil save you about a quart to half a gallon per flush.

9. Solar Water Heater
Consider eventually installing a solar hot water heater on your property. It would cost about $8,500 for a family of four. You can apply for federal and state tax credits, which adds up to almost 50-percent. It’ll take about six and a half years for the system to break even on its investment, then you’re making free hot water.

10. Green Power
Many utility companies offer renewable energy products that can be purchased as a percent of total energy use or in blocks of kilowatts. Buying green energy helps support the development and use of renewable fuel souces.

RECYCLE
There are few things you can’t turn into something environmentally friendly while making your pocket a little greener in the process.

11. Make Your Own Cleaning Supplies
Using simple ingredients such as baking soda, soap and vinegar, you can make cheap, easy, and non-toxic cleaning products save money, time, and your indoor air quality. This is especially important if you have kids, pets or if there are elderly people in your home who are sensitive to chemicals in the air so you and your home will be healthier.

12. Safer Paint
Paint can be made with the same volitile organic compounds found in nail polish or gasoline. Major manufacturers and some boutique brands have introduced low VOC paint. It spreads, it covers and leaves the room smelling just fine.

13. Aerosols
Limit your use of aerosol cans. Because they have limited recycling value, the containers will probably wind up in a landfill. Instead of aerosols, look for spray bottles, liquids, powders and roll-ons.

14. Cloth
Paper towels and napkins can be made from recycled paper, though in some cases the recycling costs more than making a brand new product. You won’t hear that about cloth napkins, which can be washed and re-used again and again.

15. Laundry Room
By making sure your lint filter is clean and your dryer exhaust free to open and close, you are essentially tuning up the efficiency of your appliance. It will run better and be more cost efficient.

16. Air Dry
For the ultimate in low cost laundry drying, put the clothes on either a drying rack or go outside and use the clothesline.

17. Smart Landscaping
Trees and shrubs provide shade during the summer and can help shield your house from frigid winter winds. Both can help lower your energy bill.

18. Walking the Dog
Instead of plastic bags, scoop your doggie’s doo in biodegradable bags.

19. Compost your leftovers
Composting helps reduce the amount of waste you send to the landfill. In the process, you create free, healthy fertilizer for your garden.

20. Collect the Rain
Place a barrel under a gutter downspout and let it fill over time. Plenty Magazine Managing Editor Deb Snoonian said, “Rain water is actually healthier for plants and gardens than tap water which often has chlorine in it to kill bacteria, but bacteria can inhibit plants from growing.

OFFICE
Green at home is one thing; green at the office has its own set of special challenges. Going green is a lifestyle choice, not just a home activity. So what are some steps you can take at work to make things more environmentally friendly?

21. Buy a laptop
Even an oversize laptop runs more efficiently and takes less energy than a desktop.

22. Reduce Paper
The paper trail follows many of us, adding hundreds of pounds of waste. You can reduce it with just a few changes. Save printing: send documents by email and keep files on your computer, not a filing cabinet.

23. Print Double Sides
You can save plenty of paper by programming your printer to use both sides of the paper. In the case of a long report, do you really need 500 one-sided pages?

24. Refill and Reuse Cups
“Many of us get take our coffee in the morning and were using plastic and cardboard cups,” said Plenty Magazine Managing Editor Deb Snoonian. “Bring your own mug. You can leave one at work; you can even often times bring a reusable mug as you’re commuting in your car. It can be refilled over and over again. Wash it at home it’s a nice habit to get into that saves you one cup a day.”

25. Pay Your Bills Online
It’s not only quicker and easier to pay by computer, it also puts a major dent in the paper waste pile.

26. Recycle Your Appliances
Not just the big ones. Cell phones, PDAs and laptops can all find a new purpose after you’re done with them. Many organizations refurbish them for low-income families.

27. Become Battery Smart
Stretch your battery use. A battery too drained to power a flashlight might be perfect to operate your TV remote. Before you pitch it – switch it!

28. Lights Out
Motion sensors, dimmers and timers can be set to turn things on and off when needed.

29. Going Grey
Ask your commercial building manager about using gray water tanks. It’s a system that recycles water from your building’s toilets, washing machines and dishwashers. Impractical? Don’t say that around New Jersey’s Aspen Ice Skating Rink where the septic water is collected, treated and put back on the rink. At this point, the systems are a bit too costly for one-family use, but if you’re in a commercial building or a planned community, consider making the water work for you.

30. Water
Speaking of water, instead of bottled water around the meeting table, filter your tap for drinking water. Not only is bottled water expensive, but it produces large amounts of wasteful containers.

CAR & GAS
Even if you can’t buy the most environmentally friendly car, there are still plenty of things you can do to get from one place to another with minimum energy. Getting to work, school and running errands all add to your energy budget. To go green you don’t have to give up transportation, just use it a bit more wisely.

31. Work From Home
Instant messaging and video conferencing now allow you to hold conferences or even take online classes. This means you save time and gas.

32. Use Public Transportation
Trains, buses, boats, car pools and your own feet.

33. Rental Car
When driving is necessary, use an inexpensive hourly rental car.

34. Drive Economically
Even if you can’t afford a fancy hybrid, there are plenty of cars that get great mileage. A car that gives you another 10 more miles to the gallon puts $1,000 dollars a year back in your pocket!

35. Drive Smart
Properly inflate your tires, change your air filter and drive 55 mph on the highway.

36. Friendly Fuels
Using bio fuels goes way beyond ethanol. Look for environmentally friendly oil car fluids and, of course, read how to use and dispose of them properly.

37. Car Air Conditioning
It’s practically standard on modern cars. Use it wisely. At higher speeds, open windows create drag and lower your mileage. Roll them up and use the air and recirculation. At slower speeds and around town, roll down your windows and catch a cool breeze.

38. One Right Turn Deserves Another
The time spent in your car idling while waiting to turn against oncoming traffic burns fuel and costs millions each year. In metro New York, United Parcel Service (UPS) reduced emissions by 1,000 metric tons with a software map program customized for every driver to minimize lefts.

39. Drive Thru
Avoid the drive thru. Instead of idling in line with your engine running for several minutes, save the gas by parking and going inside for your order.

40. Car Wash
Commercial car washes can be more efficient than home washing. Check to make sure that they clean and recycle the water.

AT THE STORE
In the store, in your home, even while you sleep…There are things you can do to be more energy efficient and better to the environment.

41. B.Y.O.B.
Bring Your Own Bag. Some grocery stores give you cash toward your next purchase for every bag you bring in to use again. It saves them and you money. “In the U.S., we use five hundred billion plastic bags every single year and only three percent of those get recycled,” said Deb Snoonian, Managing Editor of Plenty Magazine. “You can also buy permanent bags with designer colors.”

42. Packaging
Check the amount of cardboard, plastic and other materials used for the box. Some retailers are replacing plastic containers with corn-based packaging.

43. Buy Big
By purchasing things in larger quantities, you will probably save money and certainly save the cost of packaging and transporting smaller boxes of the same thing.

44. Green Fashions Are Becoming Hot
Look for clothes and accessories like handbags that are environmentally friendly.

45. Pet Products
Even kitty litter can be laced with questionable ingredients. Look for natural alternatives.

46. Antiques
Antiques are sort of the ultimate recyclable, servicing generations of owners. Many can be restored with natural wax products at a very reasonable price.

47. Buy Water Efficient Showerheads and Aerators
Many modern showerheads are built to conserve. Check to see how well yours works. Also, aerators on the faucets will keep water waste to a minimum.

48. Mattresses
Federal regulations will soon require all sleeping mattresses to be fire resistant. If you like the safety but don’t care for the flame retardant chemicals, some popular brands are introducing models with a more natural fiber based flame retardant barrier.

49. Energy Offset Certificates
These essentially allow you to invest in an environmentally friendly cause.

50. Smart Recycling
Smart recycling can be environmentally sound and pleasing, too. Companies like IceStone make durable surfaces made from recycled materials, like glass and concrete. Recycling is not limited to bottles. Used doors windows, fixtures can all be bought at a fraction of the new price. Think creatively – a New York man built a veritable castle of recycled materials.

info taken from WNBC.com

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Energi Terbarukan merupakan kunci dalam menyelesaikan masalah krisis lingkungan.

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Oleh : Prof. Syamsir Abduh, Guru Besar Universitas Trisakti

Ringkasan :

Secara teoritis penentuan harga listrik (TDL) bertujuan:

Pertama, untuk mendorong pertumbuhan ekonomi nasional secara efisien untuk terciptanya penggunaan tenaga listrik secara optimal.

Kedua, menjamin agar konsumen dilayani secara sama dan berimbang.

Ketiga, menjamin bahwa pengelola jasa ketenagalistrikan (PLN) dapat terjamin kelangsungan hidupnya secara finansial.

Jika Pemerintah keliru dalam menetapkan harga (TDL) maka dapat berimplikasi tidak tercapainya ketiga tujuan ini.

Dengan skenario kenaikan seperti yang telah dikemukan diatas dimana sektor industri akan merasakan tekanan yang paling berat, apalagi industri dimana listrik sebagai komponen utama dalam produksi mereka, bukannya pertumbuhan ekonomi yang dicapai, malah dapat membangkrutkan usaha mereka.

Secara makro ekonomi juga dapat dibuktikan, misalnya, hasil penelitian Prof.  Syamsir Abduh,  menunjukkan telah terjadi kerugian kesejahteraan (welfare loss)  dalam perhitungan TDL 2002 sebesar 0,45 persen.

Ini berarti bahwa setiap satu persen kontribusi listrik PLN terhadap GNP Indonesia diwaktu itu telah terjadi reduksi GNP sebesar 0,45 persen akibat penetapan TDL yang keliru.

Apakah kenaikan TDL diperbolehkan?  Kenaikan TDL sah-sah saja untuk menjaga kelangsungan pengelolajasa ketangalistrikan (PLN) asalkan memenuhi empat serangkai prinsip dasar yaitu : well definedwell financedwell managed, dan well priced.

Bagaimana PLN  menjaga kelangsungan hidup finansialnya?

Jika memperhatikan struktur finansial PLN maka TDL adalah satu-satunya revenue requirement untuk menutup biaya investasi dan biaya operasional mereka.

Dalam praktek, konsumen dibebani oleh biaya beban (capacity charge dalam VA) sebagai representasi dari investasi dan biaya pemakaian (energy charge dalam kWh) sebagai representasi biaya operasional serta biaya penyambungan.

Semestinya, pelanggan hanya dibebani biaya pemakaian saja agar memudahkan dalam perhitungan dan pembacaan meter.

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