Alan Meier

Alan Meier is senior executive editor of Home Energy.

Articles By Author
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Do Refrigerator Thermostat 'Setups' Save Energy?

Author: Alan Meier
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May 01, 1994

In its February 1994 issue, Consumer Reports described tests performed on a collection of upscale refrigerators. One feature tested was energy use. [continue reading]

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Carrots and Sticks From Washington

Author: Alan Meier
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July 01, 1994

Curious changes are occurring in branches of the federal government that deal with home energy use. Funding to save energy in homes is increasing while budgets for more glamorous items like space stations are being cut. This is happening, despite a struggle in Congress over funding for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program. [continue reading]

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A Journey through the Gray Literature

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July 01, 1994

The energy efficiency business suffers from a critical shortage of reliable, unbiased technical data on new products and techniques. [continue reading]

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Low-Flow Showerheads, Family Strife, and Cold Feet

Author: Alan Meier
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July 01, 1994

It is a documented fact that low-flow showerheads generally save less energy than a simple change in flow calculation would indicate. [continue reading]

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The Green Plug Dilemma

Author: Alan Meier
archive CONTENT
September 01, 1994

Several new types of electricity-saving devices are becoming common. These gadgets rely on electronics to operate an appliance more efficiently. [continue reading]

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Lighting Is the Litmus Test

Author: Alan Meier
archive CONTENT
November 01, 1994

Chances are, buying a new furnace or water heater is not going to have much effect on the aesthetic character of your house. Changing your lighting, on the other hand, can have a tremendous impact--not just on aesthetics--but also on productivity and comfort. [continue reading]

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Cheap Electricity II

Author: Alan Meier
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January 01, 1995

About a year-and-a-half ago, I wrote about the appearance of "Cheap Electricity" caused by plummeting natural gas prices and the onset of independent power producers generating power with gas turbines (see HEJuly/Aug `93, p.2). Some independents are producing electricity for less than 3.5¢/kWh. [continue reading]

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Annals of Energy Auditing: The Case of the Refrigerator with Rounded Corners

Author: Alan Meier
archive CONTENT
January 01, 1995

My telephone doesn't ring that often. Face it, people just don't need the services of an expert on energy use of refrigerators every day or every week, for that matter. [continue reading]

Blogs By Author
January/February 2010: LEDs: Avoiding the CFL Debacle

January/February 2010: LEDs: Avoiding the CFL Debacle

Alan Meier

The lighting efficacies of LEDs have been rising steadily and are poised to overtake CFLs. Fluorescents and CFLs still outshine LEDs with respect to general applications and cost of light, but LEDs are already superior for some niche applications and offer many new exciting illumination opportunities. Now we need to ensure that the reputation of this new energysaving lighting source won’t be undermined by a tidal wave of shoddy products. Tests for quality, ... [continue reading]

March/April 2010 Editorial: Home Energy Monitors

March/April 2010 Editorial: Home Energy Monitors

Alan Meier

Home Energy Monitors, that is, devices that display a home’s energy consumption have been touted as Silicon Valley’s contribution to the national energy conservation effort. A Home Energy Monitor (or HEM) constantly informs the occupants of their home’s electricity and gas consumption, along with conversions to monthly costs and comparisons with previous periods. Some models can (or will) communicate with heating and air conditioning systems. These devices will enable ... [continue reading]

May/June 2010 Editorial: Targeting the High Users

May/June 2010 Editorial: Targeting the High Users

Alan Meier

Photo by Jovan Peric - Fotolia.com Homes with high energy consumption are likely to provide us more opportunities to save energy. If that’s true, then why don’t we see more programs and businesses geared toward the high users? [continue reading]

July/August 2010 Editorial: A Cottage Industry with High Electricity Use

July/August 2010 Editorial: A Cottage Industry with High Electricity Use

Alan Meier

Can growing marijuana change the way homes use electricity? In rural Humboldt County, in far-northern California, there’s no doubt that it can. Figure 1 tracks average monthly residential electricity use in Humboldt County and in California. Until the mid-1990s, these two values were almost identical. But after 1996, Humboldt County’s electricity use suddenly turned upward. What happened? In 1996, California voters passed Proposition 215, which legalized the medical use of marijuana. In practice, Proposition 215 ... [continue reading]

November/December 2010 Editorial: Restoring Credibility in the Efficiency Marketplace

November/December 2010 Editorial: Restoring Credibility in the Efficiency Marketplace

Alan Meier

A chain is only as strong as its weakest link and nowhere is this adage truer than with the assurance of a manufacturer’s compliance with energy efficiency standards and endorsement programs. If any link is broken in this process, then it is impossible to “haul up” those energy savings for the consumer. The Department of Energy (DOE) the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) are finally taking actions to repair some of the ... [continue reading]

March/April 2011 Editorial: The Making of an Industry at ACI

March/April 2011 Editorial: The Making of an Industry at ACI

Alan Meier

Sometimes it’s only possible to recognize progress by turning around and seeing how far you’ve traveled since the journey began. That’s certainly the case for the energy-conservation industry. Gradually an industry devoted to improving home performance is taking shape. The number of technologies, techniques, and tools dedicated to reducing energy use, improving comfort, and fixing building defects continues to grow. [continue reading]

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