17
Mar

## What are Watts for Energy

Electric power is the ability to do work and is measured in units called watts. Anything powered by electricity has a watt rating. For example, a light bulb can be anywhere from one to several hundred watts or more, with the rating printed on the bulb. Appliances, televisions, computers, engines, elevators and industrial equipment all have their power consumption expressed in watts. For larger amounts, the terms kilowatt (kilo = 1000), megawatt (mega = 1 million) or even larger units may be used. Like many scientific terms, the word “watt” comes from a real person. James Watt was an 18th century engineer from Scotland who invented the first practical steam engine, which in turn led to the Industrial Revolution.

A similar term, horsepower, is still used for engines and other applications. For electric engines, one horsepower equals 746 watts. In physics, power measured in watts equals voltage multiplied by current pushed through a wire. This is conveniently illustrated by using a waterfall analogy. Voltage, or electrical potential, is similar to the height of a waterfall. Current, or electrical volume, is similar to the amount of water passing over the falls. Multiplying them together to measure power is similar to the total power of the water crashing to the bottom of the falls.

Electricity is usually billed to the customer in kilowatt-hours, or the power of 1000 watts used for one hour. A 40-watt light bulb burning for 25 hours uses one kilowatt-hour, as does a 500-watt appliance used for two hours. Meters from Texas electricity companies measure the current passing into the customer’s property every moment, translate this reading into the correct units and record the proper amount for billing. Peak use times for electricity are usually in the mornings and evenings, with lower usage rates during mid-day periods and late at night. For this reason, some utilities use state-of-the-art meters and bill customers lower rates for off-peak hours to encourage more efficient use of generating capacity.

Texas utilities have a big job. They figure the number of homes and businesses they need to serve, plan for future growth, add up all those watts, then build power plants and maintain wires to bring the needed power to every building on their list. Users simply hit the switch and enjoy the results. Electricity Companies in Irving can have some good offers.

21
Jun

## Water On Fire: The Hidden Side Effects Of Fracking

From Colorado to New York, hydraulic fracturing or fracking of deep natural gas deposits is proceeding at a frenetic pace. While the energy security benefits and influx of gas field jobs are well publicized, there are horrendous side effects being hidden from the general public.

One of the most disturbing side effects of fracking is the flammable methane that leaches into aquifers and wells. Although the industry denies any connection between drilling and methane release, residents in these areas are only too familiar with the consequences of vast quantities of methane contaminating their air and water. Read More »

20
Jun

## Dangerous Chemicals Used To Process Tar Sands

Tar sands are the result of oil field mining techniques. They have been known to use dangerous chemicals to process these tar sands. This can unfortunately contaminate the ground water. Many oil companies responsibly mine their fields using green techniques. The ground water is where many people get their drinking water from. These chemicals can be harmful to people, animals and crops. There are consequences to the environment for polluting the ground water. Government research companies are working on a solution to this problem. Stricter oil mining rules will need to be in place to reduce polluting the ground water. Read More »

19
Jun

## Do Farms Or Lawns Cause More Damage To Water?

The pesticides, fertilizers and other chemical agents used in farming and lawn care could be creating a much more serious problem than you might have suspected. Chemical agents that find their way into streams and rivers are responsible for a great deal of harm to aquatic ecosystems and wildlife. Learning more about the potential dangers that farming and residential lawn care may be resulting in can allow you to make smarter and more sustainable choices in your own efforts. Doing your part to arrest the harm being done to the Read More »

17
Jun

## Are Birth Control Pills Polluting Fresh Water?

Chemicals that directly influence sex hormones in animals are known as endocrine disruptor chemicals, or EDCs. These chemicals have the ability to affect the expression of sexual characteristics in animals. While these chemicals occur naturally in the water supply, human activity can increase their concentrations. Birth control pills are not the sole source of EDCs in the water supply- other types of pharmaceuticals, chemicals from industry and farming, and naturally produced and excreted hormones also play a role. However, birth control pills do contribute to the problem, as ethinyl estradiol, the chemical which makes them effective, Read More »

16
Jun

## How Your Steak Dinner Kills Fish

Short-sighted farming and ranching methods that make use of fertilizers and chemical agents that become environmental contaminants may be causing harm on not just their surrounding region, but aquatic habitats and wildlife as well. Agents that enter the water table can create a real threat for rivers, lakes and even the ocean, resulting in massive harm to fish populations and other wildlife. Finding and implementing more sustainable alternatives and addressing the limitations and problems associated with industrial farming and ranching operations could prove to be a very important effort, one that has the Read More »