Friday, June 02, 2006

Man Orchid

Have you ever seen one of these? It's a man orchid. You can see his little arms and legs as he hangs from his helmet by his head. They're not easy to spot as they are not brightly coloured like other flowers. I was discussing future trends with my son last night. Take something everyday and mundane like a light bulb. Well you all know the 100W light bulb, well a few years ago they gave us the low energy bulb where the equivalent value was the 18W. This saved us just over 80% of our electricity. Now starting to come through in the catalogues are LED lights. That's Light Emitting Diodes. The 100W equivalent is just an amazing 2W. This has to be the future. At the moment they are quite expensive (£7.95)but with mass production the price will fall from it's novelty high to a more reasonable price. After all the low energy bulbs started off at £7.95 each now you buy multipacks at the pound shop. These LED lights will be the same. Not only that they can come in different colours (White being the most expensive currently)and they don't have to be bulb shaped. You'll be able to buy lighting tiles that glow.
While we're on the energy saving subject the next huge growth industry will be to do with self sufficiency in power. Little windmills initially to power all these LED lights in your house. Then there will be the solar panels on the roof. These will be the water heaters. The prices they quote on TV for the state of the art panels are quite frankly ridiculous. Someone somewhere is going to come up with a budget version. Because, lets face it, a garden hose painted black glued onto a black panel would be better than nothing and raising the temperature of the water in your tank by just a few degrees every day will save significant amounts of energy. We don't necessarily have to have the most efficient state of the art equipment. Anything that saved energy will be better than nothing.
I'd like to see electric cars. The oil companies wouldn't of course. They could be recharged by your windmill. They don't have the range of a petrol car but there are thousands who drive just a few miles a day to and from work and that would be ideal.
I'm not advocating that we should all follow Tom and Barbera Good and become self sufficent and have gardens full of hens and a goat. That's too much to ask of most people. But LED lights? That's a start. Water heating panels? Theywont change your life style but will help the environment.
and anyone who starts telling us nuclear power is the way to go can knock themselves right off my christmas card list they aint no friends of mine.

Rock on dudes

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