Sustainability

“Sustainability is an economic state where the demands placed upon the environment by people and commerce can be met without reducing the capacity of the environment to provide for future generations. It can also be expressed in the simple terms of an economic golden rule for the restorative economy: leave the world better than you found it, take no more than you need, try not to harm life or the environment, make amends if you do.” – Paul Hawkin

Sustainability at Ron Slade PE LLC

We have been outdoorsmen for over 30 years; backpacking, mountaineering, kayaking, and similar activities. We stay true to these 3 decades of ecological commitment by our principals, showing that green design can be implemented in a practical and cost-effective manner.

 

We design about 3MW of photovoltaic each year. Our largest systems include 2MW of grid tie and 300kW of off grid.

 

We are a firm dedicated to the integration of sustainable design elements for all projects.

Solar Power

Solar energy is radiant light and heat from the Sun harnessed using a range of ever-evolving technologies such as solar heating, photovoltaics, solar thermal energy, solar architecture and artificial photosynthesis.

It is an important source of renewable energy and its technologies are broadly characterized as either passive solar or active solar depending on the way they capture and distribute solar energy or convert it into solar power. Active solar techniques include the use of photovoltaic systems, concentrated solar power and solar water heating to harness the energy. Passive solar techniques include orienting a building to the Sun, selecting materials with favorable thermal mass or light dispersing properties, and designing spaces that naturally circulate air.

Wind Power

Wind power is the use of air flow through wind turbines to mechanically power generators for electricity. Wind power, as an alternative to burning fossil fuels, is plentiful, renewable, widely distributed, clean, produces no greenhouse gas emissions during operation, and uses little land. The net effects on the environment are far less problematic than those of non-renewable sources.

Wind farms consist of many individual wind turbines which are connected to the electric power transmission network. Onshore wind is an inexpensive source of electricity, competitive with or in many places cheaper than coal or gas plants. Offshore wind is steadier and stronger than on land, and offshore farms have less visual impact, but construction and maintenance costs are considerably higher. Small onshore wind farms can feed some energy into the grid or provide electricity to isolated off-grid locations.

Photo credit: Deni Williams via VisualHunt.com / CC BY

Hydroelectricity

Hydroelectricity is the term referring to electricity generated by hydropower; the production of electrical power through the use of the gravitational force of falling or flowing water. It is the most widely used form of renewable energy, accounting for 16 percent of global electricity generation – 3,427 terawatt-hours of electricity production in 2010, and is expected to increase about 3.1% each year for the next 25 years.

Hydropower is produced in 150 countries, with the Asia-Pacific region generating 32 percent of global hydropower in 2010. China is the largest hydroelectricity producer, with 721 terawatt-hours of production in 2010, representing around 17 percent of domestic electricity use.

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