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Green Time TV - Contemplating Green Technologies

on Fri, 02/24/2012 - 2:57pm

How could a $20 light bulb cost less than a $1.48 one?  Ideas for green living are popping up everywhere.  Right now, light bulbs are a glowing issue.  We all know that fluorescent bulbs are far more efficient than the incandescent ones that are being phases out.  But no sooner than we get used to one new light bulb than LEDs take over.

Bill Krekeler’s movie on the history of light bulbs has its first airing on Green Time TV in St. Louis on Saturday March 3.  It describes the origin of artificial light from fire and its changes through incandescents, fluorescents and LEDs.  The movie details the root of inefficiency of the incandescent as being the way it produces most of its light at wavelengths that are not visible to the human eye.  The result is far more coal being burned to produce light.

After the short movie, guest Gavin Perry of Show Me Solar explains that “watts” measure power while “lumens” measure brightness, making lumens a far better indicator of light.  LED bulbs are so       efficient that the cost of electricity for them for just a year or two makes them much less expensive than incandescents, despite their higher price tag in the store.

But, oops, there’s a fly in the ointment.  What happens if efficiency makes the use of LEDs so cheap that Americans light up everything all the time?  Would we then burn even more coal?  It turns out that efficiency will not reduce electricity unless it takes a back seat to energy conservation.

And then there’s air conditioning.  Could the most efficient cooling gadget ever invented actually be caves?  The March 2012 Green Time TV series begins with light bulbs, switches to the perils and promises of coping with mountains of e-waste, and ends up with in-depth discussions of the mountains of coal used for air conditioning.  If you liked “The Story Stuff,” you’ll love that group’s “The Story of Electronics” and comments by Ben West on the unknown dangers of the industry.

The last two shows in the series again feature Gavin Perry, this time with Patricia Schuba of Labadie Environmental Organization.  When Stan Cox published his book on the wastefulness of air conditioning, Losing Our Cool, in 2010, it provoked energy addicts across the country.  Gavin and Patrica discuss many ways to survive sweltering St. Louis summers, using conservation and energy reduction approaches such as passive energy, solar power, earth-sheltered homes, and, yes, cellars and caves.

Green Time now airs on KNLC stations in four Missouri areas.  It appears at noon on Saturdays in St. Louis on Channel 24-1 and at 8 pm on Mondays in St. Louis on Channel 24-2, Springfield on Channel 39, Joplin on Channel 36 and Marshfield on Channel 17.

March Green Time programs contemplate green technologies on these dates:

  • Saturday, March 3 & Monday, March 5: “A Light Bulb Went on in My Head;”
  • Saturday, March 10 & Monday, March 12: “Are LED Bulbs for Your Lamp Socket or Garden?”
  • Saturday, March 17 & Monday, March 19: “The Story of Electronics;”
  • Saturday, March 24 & Monday, March 26: “Losing Our Cool;”
  • Saturday, March 31 & Monday, April 2: “Air Conditioning, Coal & St. Louis.”

For information about Green Time, call 314-727-8554 or email