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Ask the EcoGeek: Muscle Power

Instead of solar and cialis mail order uk wind power to supply to your own house - which are both weather dependent - has anyone thought about systems that might require some actual work, but provide a usable amount of power?

I was thinking, what if each member of my family carried a 40lb bag up 3 floors and hung it on a hook that was connected to a generator; would an effort like that actually provide a significant amount of energy? Just a thought.
Jens, London

Oh don't even know what you've done! Your question is totally a word problem from a physics exam. And as much as this will likely frighten most people reading this, I'm going to cialis canada generic treat it as such.

If 120 lbs is lifted thirty feet and then allowed them to drop slowly over twelve hours, how much energy will be produced?

120 lbs * 30 ft = 3600 ft/lbs = 4880 joules = 1.356 watt hours / 12 hours = 0.113 watts.

So, in answer to your question, no, that would not provide a significant amount of electricity. In fact, in order to power one 60 watt equivalent CFL for twelve hours, each member of your family would have to march up the stairs about ten times.

But that doesn't mean that you don't have an excellent point. Every person is a magical little energy factory. Whataburgers go in...watt hours come out, and it is viagra australia possible to harness that energy.

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Ask the EcoGeek: Recycling CDs

Dear EcoGeek,

Is it possible to recycle old CD's or DVD's?

The perpetual scourge of EcoGeekiness is obsolescence. We pay good money for what we see as a good product, and then five years down the line we're surrounded by useless junk!

But I can't help but answer this seemingly straightforward question with several different answers.

First, I'll actually answer the question:

Yes, you can, but it's not as simple as curbside pickup. CDs and DVDs do contain valuable materials (CDRs even sometimes contain gold) and there are techniques to harvest that material for reuse, but those same materials make them too complicated for regular recycling centers. Unfortunately, the materials aren't expensive enough that someone will pay for them. To recycle CDs you'll have to ship them to a special recycling center. Several are listed at the bottom of this post.

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Ask the EcoGeek: LED Lights

Dear EcoGeek
I did a survey and I have 33 recessed bulbs in the house (120W)!  I've switched all my non-recessed bulbs with CFLs, but I need something for our recessed lighting. So my question is why aren't these ultra-efficient LED lights being produced in greater quantities (and this bringing the costs down)?

 - David

Thirty three 120 watt bulbs will keep your house competing with a small star for both power consumption and light intensity, but I'm not here to judge. If you've got the sockets, they should have high-efficiency bulbs in them.

The good news is two-fold. First, you don't have to wait for LED bulbs to look there overnight canadian levitra show up at Wal-Mart to find a high efficiency alternative because they've started selling excellent recessed CFLs. I've actually got one shooting down on me right now! To match a 120 watt incandescent, you should look for a 23 to 26 watt CFL.

The bad news is that LED bulbs would likely be a better choice for you, but a good one won't be easy to find. LED lighting is facing a few barriers that will take some time to overcome. First, LEDs are currently fairly expensive to manufacture, and while their extreme long life and efficiency will eventually pay for the extra cost, it's hard to get folks to cough up 30 bucks for a bulb when they're so used to paying 30 cents. You might be able to it's great! cheapest levitra online find a good one somewhere like Ace Hardware or specialty stores online, but be ready to cough up some change.

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