Archive for the ‘energy’ Category

Is Your Game Console Eco Friendly?

Monday, December 27th, 2010

Once again this year there were an awful lot of game consoles under an awful lot of Christmas trees. Of course this systems are very different form the old Ataris and the original Nintendos. Games look more like movies and some video games are actually even good for you.

Although the pricetag and personal gaming preferences are big issues when trying to decide between the most popular video game systems, it’s important to remember that the cost of the system doesn’t end at the cash register.

The games aside (which for all three “big systems” still cost $50 and up) there is the issue of energy consumption to consider. It takes a considerable amount of juice to run these gaming systems, more in fact than you might have realized.

Not too long ago the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) decided to test the newest models of the top three gaming systems – The Sony Playstation 3, the Xbox 360 and the Nintendo Wii- to see exactly how much energy they consumed.

To perform the test researchers played one hour of EA Sports Madden 2011 on each console. During this test the Wii was a winner in the energy efficiency stakes by a mile.

The EPRI gamers found that during that hour the Nintendo Wii used an average of 13.7 watts, the Sony PlayStation 3 used an average of 84.8 watts, and the Microsoft Xbox 360 used an average of 87.9 watts. They did note however that both the higher consuming game systems had been tweaked to reduce their energy consumption over older models of the same console. The 2007 model of the PS3 consumed 150 watts and the Xbox 360 from the same year 118.8 so improvements are being made.

If you want to cut the amount of energy your gaming console consumes you should do what many gamers often forget to do – turn the console off when not in active use, as they all still consume energy even when no active game is being played.

Preventing Oil Spills

Monday, May 31st, 2010
What can be Done to Prevent Future Oil Spills?

The Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico has once more brought the issue of the dangers of offshore oil drilling, both to humans and to the environment in general, back into sharp focus. The effort to even stem the flow of oil from the sunken rig involved a number of different measures from the slightly strange – trying to mop up oil with tonnes of hair donated by barbers from all around the world- to massive and somewhat untested measures like the “top kill “procedure set into motion by BP on Wednesday May 26th, 2010.
Whatever the end result of the efforts, there will still be massive damage done to the ecosystems in the areas affected by the spill. Perhaps the hardest hit will be the delicate coastal areas around Louisiana which were only just beginning to bounce back from the damage Mother Nature inflicted upon them during Hurricane Katrina in 2005.
However given that this far from the first devastating oil spill to wreak havoc on the world’s waters what else should be done to prevent these incidents from ever occurring at all?
Many environmentalists suggest that offshore drilling should be slowed and that companies like BP and Exxon should shift more of their focus to developing alternative energy sources. They encourage people to cut their own consumption of fossil fuels by driving less or trading in their older vehicles for more energy efficient models and taking advantage of the alternative energy supplies being offered by many local electricity companies.
As they have after previous oil spill accidents the US Government will of course launch inquiries into what went wrong in the Gulf of Mexico and it is also probable that once the finger pointing between the companies involved in the latest incident has died down they will no doubt make a great many promises about making greater efforts to be environmentally conscious (as they have in the past) However it may just be up to the man in street to help prevent another oil spill from occurring by consuming less fossil fuels in their everyday lives, reducing the need for offshore drilling at all.
To learn more about the devastation caused by an oil spill and how you can help visit Tip the Planet , a leading green wiki