Electric vehicles feeling the love

It’s the season for love, and electric vehicles are definitely feeling some.

That’s in part due to a new study that says electric vehicles cost less than half as much ...

Tagged: EV, Electric Vehicles, valentines day, gas, save money

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Electric vehicles feeling the love

Electric vehicles feeling the love

Electric vehicles have a long way to go before they’re mainstream, but more news like this might push more drivers to ask EV’s to “be mine” this Valentine’s Day.

Key Points

  • A new study shows that electric vehicles are cheaper to operate than gas-powered vehicles.
  • The study focuses on fuel costs.
  • On average, an electric vehicle costs $485 per year to operate, and a gas-powered one costs $1,117.

It’s the season for love, and electric vehicles are definitely feeling some.

That’s in part due to a new study that says electric vehicles cost less than half as much to operate as gas-powered vehicles.

The University of Michigan study broke down the fuel costs state by state and found that no matter where you live in the U.S., an electric vehicle (EV) is going to be cheaper to operate. On average, it costs $485 to fuel an EV and $1,117 to fuel a gas-powered vehicle.

It varies by region and state, but even in a state like Hawaii with high gas prices, the electric costs still came out on top with it costing $1,509 for the gasoline version versus $1,106 for the EV.

Drivers would notice the biggest savings in Washington where electricity is very affordable and gas prices are on the high side of the spectrum. There, the average driver would pay $1,338 for gas for a traditional vehicle or just $372 to charge an electric one each year.

You can check out the breakdown for your state by using the Department of Energy’s interactive eGallon calculator here. An eGallon is a cool way to compare how much it costs in electricity to run your car the same distance a gallon of gas would get you. You can even make it specific to how much you’d save on your daily commute. The Department of Energy’s eGallon calculator was updated in 2018 to reflect current average electric and fuel prices in each state.

Electric vehicles have a long way to go before they’re mainstream, accounting for only one percent of cars sold. But more news like this might push more drivers to ask EV’s to “be mine” this Valentine’s Day.


Sarah FolslandSarah is mom to the two cutest little girls in the entire world. Before choosing to make changing diapers and reading bed time stories her full time gig, she earned an M.A. in Political Science from The University of South Dakota, worked in the Governor’s Office as a policy analyst and dabbled in communications at her local utility. Follow Sarah on Twitter @EnergyMommy.

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Stovetop challenge: Induction versus gas

Fall is here. Time for soup, stew and chili. But before you start your simmer, consider that how you heat your pot could impact your energy bill.

Most stoves have ...

Tagged: oven, stove, induction, soup, heat, gas, cooking

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Stovetop challenge: Induction versus gas

Soup pots on stovetop

Induction cooking is gaining steam. See how it stacks up against the competition when it comes to energy efficiency.

Key Points

  • Soup weather is here.
  • How you cook your soup could impact your energy bill.
  • Induction heat uses less energy than gas.

Fall is here. Time for soup, stew and chili. But before you start your simmer, consider that how you heat your pot could impact your energy bill.

Most stoves have a gas or electric range. But induction cooking is gaining steam, and Paul Scheckel of Home Energy Pros put induction cooking to the test for energy efficiency.

His test was simple. See how much energy was used to boil a pot of water using gas versus induction.

Here’s how Co.Exist explained his results:

“For gas, Scheckel’s 7,000 BTU burner boiled the quart of water in 8 minutes and 30 seconds. That works out to 992 BTUs of energy.

“The 1,300-watt induction cooker boiled the quart in 5 minutes and 50 seconds, which is a little more convenient, but it did it using 0.126 kilowatt-hours of electricity, or 430 BTUs of heating energy. Scheckel compares this to a theoretical 100%-efficient method, which would use around 317 BTUs.

“The induction cooker used 430 BTUs, and gas used 992 BTUs. That’s a pretty big difference. A big part of this efficiency is the induction method itself, which effectively turns your pot or pan into a heating element, whereas gas (and conventional electric hotplates) makes heat which in turn heats the pot. And as we know, gas also heats the room, which is a big waste of energy. In fact, many professional kitchens have switched over to induction precisely because it doesn’t heat the kitchen directly, making it more comfortable for the chefs, and requiring less power to cool the kitchen back down again.

“Whether or not induction saves you money will come down to the cost of gas and electricity in your town, but the energy saving is quite clear.”

Now pass the soup, please. 


Sarah FolslandSarah is mom to the two cutest little girls in the entire world. Before choosing to make changing diapers and reading bed time stories her full time gig, she earned an M.A. in Political Science from The University of South Dakota, worked in the Governor’s Office as a policy analyst and dabbled in communications at her local utility. Follow Sarah on Twitter @EnergyMommy.

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Unlikely source of energy: Pork

Pork isn’t only the other white meat. Pigs are also creating a source of electricity.

Duke Energy plans to ...

Tagged: Duke Energy, renewable energy, methane gas, gas

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Unlikely source of energy: Pork

Pig

The potential to have an abundant, cost-effective source of fuel that’s not reliant on the weather forecast is appealing.

Key Points

  • Duke Energy plans to use methane gas from pork and poultry waste at four new power plants.
  • The methane gas will generate about 125,000 megawatt hours of energy each year.
  • Waste-to-energy projects are gaining popularity.

Pork isn’t only the other white meat. Pigs are also creating a source of electricity.

Duke Energy plans to use swine and poultry waste at four new power stations in North Carolina. The stations will use the methane gas from the waste to generate about 125,000 megawatt hours of energy each year.

The methane gas will be captured, treated and then injected into a pipeline system for use at the energy plants.

According to the Energy Information Authority, North Carolina’s energy mix in general is changing. Before 2010, coal-fired power plants provided more than half of the electricity generated in the state. But natural-gas use for power production has been on the rise, tripling in use between 2010 and 2014. As of 2015, North Carolina’s net electricity generation included 3,875 GWh from nuclear, 3,137 GWh from natural gas and 1,452 GWh from coal. The state also has 70 hydroelectric dams, contributing to the state’s almost 7 percent total of electricity generation from renewable sources.

North Carolina was one of the first states in the southeast to adopt a renewable energy portfolio. It requires investor-owned electric utilities like Duke to meet 12.5 percent of their retail electricity sales through renewable energy resources or energy efficiency measures by 2021. The standard also set statewide targets for energy recovery and electricity derived from swine waste and from poultry waste.

The potential to have an abundant, cost-effective source of fuel that’s not reliant on the weather forecast is appealing. We’ve heard of algae, coffee and even tomatoes being used to make energy. Have you heard of any other unlikely sources of energy lately? Tell us below. 


Sarah FolslandSarah is mom to the two cutest little girls in the entire world. Before choosing to make changing diapers and reading bed time stories her full time gig, she earned an M.A.in Political Science from The University of South Dakota, worked in the Governor’s Office as a policy analyst and dabbled in communications at her local utility. Follow Sarah on Twitter @EnergyMommy.

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Hey Jed, here’s a new way to find some bubblin’ crude

Come and listen to a story about a man named Jed

A poor mountaineer, barely kept his family fed,

And then one day he collected some data from the European Space ...

Tagged: European Space Agency, gravity satellite, oil, gas

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Hey Jed, here’s a new way to find some bubblin’ crude

The Beverly Hillbillies

The original Jed found his oil when he was “shootin at some food,” but his modern version could use new information from a satellite.

Key Points

  • New information from a European Space Agency satellite might make it easier to identify where oil and gas are located.
  • The satellite measured subsurface density and temperature, good clues for where subsurface energy resources might be hiding.
  • Jed should make a comeback. 

Come and listen to a story about a man named Jed

A poor mountaineer, barely kept his family fed,

And then one day he collected some data from the European Space Agency’s gravity satellite to measure subsurface density and its vertical and lateral variability to estimate the presence of oil and gas under the Earth’s surface.

Catchy yeah? I feel a prime time remake hit coming on.

The original Jed found his oil when he was “shootin at some food,” but his modern version could use new information from a satellite that collected data about what’s lurking inside the Earth.

The European Space Agency’s satellite is special because it’s orbiting much closer to the Earth than most others, allowing it to get more accurate measurements. The satellite collected data that might tell researchers new information about the Earth’s geological composition and temperatures.

Researchers are quick to note that the information from the satellite is just a starting point and can’t necessarily pinpoint the exact location of oil and gas. It can, however, give clues into where oil and gas are likely to be hiding.

The information the satellite collected is being reviewed now, so it gives us a little more time to work on our updated Beverly Hillbillies jingle.   

Y’all come back now, y’hear?


Sarah FolslandSarah is mom to the two cutest little girls in the entire world. Before choosing to make changing diapers and reading bed time stories her full time gig, she earned an M.A.in Political Science from The University of South Dakota, worked in the Governor’s Office as a policy analyst and dabbled in communications at her local utility. Follow Sarah on Twitter @EnergyMommy.

Did you like this article? Here are some other articles that include: European Space Agency, gravity satellite, oil, gas