Welcome to The Current, Liberty Power’s blog site
Each week, we’ll post a new set of articles on a variety of topics including energy tips and savings, technology innovations, energy and your business, green advances and even a few Liberty Power updates (it is our company’s blog after all).
The following article, featured in the Spanish-language publication, Negocios Now, tells the story of Liberty Power’s rise from a small startup to become the nation’s largest independent retail electric supplier and how the optimistic phrase “every cloud has a silver lining” helped pave the way.
Read the full article here.
Powering Up for Sochi
What it Takes to Provide Olympic Caliber Energy
We’ve all heard the Sochi Winter Olympics are by far the most expensive in the event’s history. While Russia has not released details of how it spent its Olympic budget, you can bet a big part of the estimated $50 billion U.S. dollar expense went to energy infrastructure.
Russia is considered an energy superpower. It boasts the largest natural gas reserves on Earth, but most of that is located in remote and frozen regions in the north and east. Sochi is a Black Sea resort town in the nation’s west. It was far from any major pipelines and transmission wires when it was selected as Olympic host back in 2007.
Since winning its Olympic bid, Russia has built 49 major energy projects that have increased generating capacity in the Sochi region by 800 percent.
Even without the Olympics, Sochi was in dire need of an improved energy distribution system. Prior to the building boom, the last pipeline was built in 1973. The Russian Ministry of Energy admits about half of all fuel was lost during distribution.
The Olympic energy projects included a 106 mile natural gas pipeline beneath the Black Sea. That fuel feeds a new thermal power plant in Sochi and is expected to provide one-third of the peak energy demand during the Olympics. Power will be augmented by a second power plant build in the northwest of Sochi. All of this new electricity generation also required 460 new distribution lines.
Even more energy will be temporary and easily removed when the games are over. Some arenas, media centers and Olympic villages will be fueled by 120 diesel generators.
When the Olympic athletes pack up and head home, Sochi will be left with a much improved electricity generation and transmission system.
Source: National Geographic Daily News
“Oh the weather outside is frightful, but the fire is so delightful…” While this holiday song makes the cold weather sound, well, quite delightful, we all know better. Due to this winter’s extreme weather conditions, the northeast has been experiencing frightfully low temperatures and unexpected increases in their electricity rates.
Weather is a major contributor to energy costs because electric heating and cooling are top drivers of electricity consumption. As consumers use more heat and electricity to warm their homes and businesses, the demand on the power generators producing this power increases and, in turn, energy prices increase.
With energy prices at record highs, it is critical now more than ever that you take steps to manage your energy consumption! Here are a few winter energy saving tips to try in your home or office:
- Energy costs are at their highest during peak energy hours (typically 7 a.m. – 11 p.m. on weekdays). Get into the habit of waiting until off-peak hours to run appliances such as your dishwasher, washer and dryer, and heavy machinery. Energy rates can be significantly lower during these periods.
- Set thermostats to no higher than 68 degrees. Lower the temperature when you go to bed or leave the house/office to ensure optimal heating and energy savings. Take steps to minimize the heating or lighting of areas in your home or office while not in use.
- Ensure that radiators and/or heating vents are not blocked by furniture or draperies. Keep your radiators, registers and baseboard heaters dirt and dust free. Close vents and doors in unused rooms.
- Take advantage of non-electric heating methods to the extent possible. Gas furnaces or glass door fireplaces are ideal. Remember that traditional fireplaces may actually make your home colder by pulling heated air out of your home and exhausting it through your chimney.
- Close energy-stealing openings such as fireplace dampers or window air conditioning units to prevent cold air from entering through vents
- Ensure that your house/office is properly insulated. If rooms are too cold consider taking action to seal air leaks using caulk, spray foam, or weather stripping.
- Open the window coverings on the south-facing windows in your home or office to allow in sunlight. Close these window coverings at night to keep the heat in.
- Turn your water heater down to 120 degrees Fahrenheit. Install a water heater blanket if your water heater is more than five years old.
David Hernandez, CEO, named panelist at Job Creators Network event
Ft. Lauderdale – January 23, 2014 – Liberty Power, the nation’s largest independent retail electric supplier, today announced David Hernandez, co-founder and CEO, will participate as a panel speaker at the Job Creators Network’s inaugural Hispanic Business Leaders Summit on Friday, January 24 in Miami, Florida.
The Job Creators Network (JCN) focuses on six specific government policies – trade, healthcare, energy, public and private partnerships, entrepreneurships and employer to employee education (E2E) – and how these policies affect their business and employees. JCN provides business owners with the necessary tools to discuss these topics with their staff in simple, easy-to-comprehend terms.
JCN plans on making the Summit an annual event; this year the event is solely focused on the effects of government policy on national Hispanic businesses. According to JCN, in 2014, Hispanic businesses are twice more likely to start a new business than any other demographics in the United States.
“Even with the economic downfall that began in 2008, Hispanic businesses have continued to experience a 30% increase in revenue,” said Alfredo Ortiz, President of Job Creators Network. “Hispanic businesses have also steadily increased their employee counts during a time when many Americans were in search of employment. This Summit is a great platform to discuss how these businesses have found ways to thrive and prosper during an otherwise dismal period.”
The Summit’s itinerary includes a conference program, cocktail reception and a sit down dinner with Bernie Marcus, co-founder of Home Depot and JCN, and keynote speaker, Florida Governor, Rick Scott. Hernandez is one of four panelists participating in the invite-only Summit.
Miami, Florida was chosen as the location for JCN’s first inaugural Hispanic Business Leaders Summit, in part because of the number of successful Hispanic-owned businesses based in south Florida. According to Hispanic Business, six of the top 10 largest Hispanic-owned businesses in the United States are located there. Liberty Power is one of these companies, ranked as the ninth largest overall. In addition, Liberty Power was named an honoree of Inc.’s Hire Power Award in 2013. This honor recognized the company as a top private business job creator.
Nothing evokes the holiday season more than the phrase, “batteries not included.” Any toy that moves or makes sound – meaning most toys that kids put on their wish list – needs a battery, or two, or six. Since this is the season for giving and buying batteries, here are some top tips for maximizing their life, safe storage and safe disposal:
Maximize Device and Battery Life:
- Whenever you replace batteries, clean contact surfaces by gently rubbing with a clean pencil eraser or cloth
- Remove exhausted batteries from the toy or device immediately; old batteries can leak and either ruin the contact surface or reduce the life of the replacement battery
- Replace all batteries at the same time with new ones; don’t mix and match new batteries with partially used batteries
- Keep unused batteries in a cool dry place and normal room temperature.
- If a toy or other device won’t be in use for a month or more, remove the batteries before storing
- Keep batteries, particularly small coin cell batteries, out of reach of children; they are choking hazard and can cause serious injury
- Don’t carry loose batteries in a pocket or purse with loose metal objects like coins or paper clips; this can short-circuit the battery and lead to high heat or leakage
- Don’t store batteries in high temperatures; this drains the life of the battery and can lead to leakage or rupture
- Don’t place a non-rechargeable battery in a charging device
- Most brand-name battery manufacturers have eliminated the use of mercury in alkaline batteries. In most parts of the United States you can place these batteries in common household waste.
- But, check your state or municipal waste collection website to see if they offer recycling programs before you put your alkaline batteries in the trash. Some municipalities also ask consumers wrap their batteries in masking tape prior to disposal.
- Don’t put a large number of alkaline batteries in the trash together; used batteries typically have some life in them – if they make contact, it can pose a serious safety risk
- Never put old batteries in a fire; they may leak or rupture
- Rechargeable battery recycling is increasingly popular. Visit www.call2recycle.org to find out what recycling programs are available in your area.
Ft. Lauderdale – December 3, 2013 – Liberty Power, the nation’s largest independent retail electric supplier, today announced they have been selected by the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) as the recipient of the 2013 Minority Retail Energy Firm of the Year Award.
Liberty Power was one of 12 organizations recognized during National Minority Enterprise Development (MED) Week. Their award was part of the Minority-Owned Firms category; the other two categories were the Ronald H. Brown Leadership Award and the Champions of Minority Business Development.
This Minority Retail Energy Firm Award is presented to the minority-owned firm in the energy industry who has achieved notable success in providing quality products and services resulting in the improvement of the environment, proficiency, and customer satisfaction.
David Hernandez, Liberty Power’s CEO, accepted the award during a private ceremony hosted by the U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker on December 2 in Washington, D.C.
“We are humbled and proud to receive this award, and do so on behalf of our team members and all the small businesses, households and Fortune 500 customers we serve. We are grateful to the Minority Business Development Agency for their advocacy for diversity on all levels,” said David Hernandez, co-founder and CEO of Liberty Power.
These awards were created to celebrate the phenomenal achievements of minority entrepreneurs and businesses. All the recipients have demonstrated industry leadership, business success, economic impact and a positive influence on their community.
“These award recipients are pillars in their communities who help create jobs and keep our nation competitive in the global economy,” said David A. Hinson, MBDA National Director. “MBDA and the U.S. Department of Commerce are pleased to honor these outstanding leaders and firms and the entrepreneurial spirit they embody and promote.”
About Liberty Power
Headquartered in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, Liberty Power is the largest independent retail electric supplier in the United States based on 2012 KEMA rankings of electric retailers. The company is also the first minority-owned supplier with a national footprint, and the largest Hispanic-owned energy company in the United States according to Hispanic Business. Liberty Power provides large and small businesses, government agencies and residential customers with low-cost electricity and exceptional customer service.
For more information on Liberty Power, please visit www.libertypowercorp.com
About the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA)
MBDA, www.mbda.gov, is the only Federal agency dedicated to the growth and global competitiveness of U.S. minority-owned businesses. Our programs and services better equip minority-owned firms to create jobs, build scale and capacity, increase revenues and expand regionally, nationally and internationally. Services are provided through a network of MBDA Business Centers.
Intuitive thermostat and remote app work together for ultimate efficiency.
Have you ever left your home for a relaxing summer vacation… then suddenly realized you left your air conditioner running full-tilt? With ecobee, you don’t have to worry about the energy and money you’re wasting cooling an empty home while you’re trying to relax at the cottage.
The ecobee thermostat features an intuitive and easy-to-read interface, including a full-color touch screen. Like many digital thermostats, ecobee is fully programmable. You can also change your settings remotely from your personal ecobee web portal, smart phone or tablet.
ecobee also improves your HVAC efficiency. Using algorithms that account for factors like weather, the size of your home, number of occupants, and the type of heating and cooling systems, the ecobee system maximizes energy efficiency. The system can also alert you to potential problems, like plummeting temperatures that could cause frozen pipes, or high humidity that can spur the growth of mildew in your home.
To order an ecobee system online, or find a local retailer, visit https://www.ecobee.com/buy/where/.
Liberty Power to Supply Renewable Energy Certificates to National Minority Supplier Development Council Event
Ft. Lauderdale, Florida – October 25, 2013 – Liberty Power, the nation’s largest independent retail electric supplier, announced today that it will donate Green-e Energy Certified renewable energy certificates (RECs) to match 100 percent of the estimated electricity consumption at the 2013 National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC) Conference and Business Opportunity Fair.
The NMSDC Conference is the organization’s signature event and is recognized as the largest national business opportunity fair of its kind. Nearly 7,000 corporate executives, minority business owners and government officials are expected to attend and engage in workshops, leadership training, and networking.
The NMSDC Conference is scheduled to take place Sunday, October 27 through Wednesday, October 30 in San Antonio, Texas. Liberty Power will supply enough RECs from Texas wind facilities to match the estimated usage for the four-day event’s venue, the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center. The donation of RECs will offset nearly 600,000 pounds of carbon-dioxide (CO2). According to the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Greenhouse Gas Equivalencies calculator, this is equivalent to avoiding the CO2 emissions associated with consuming over 30,000 gallons of gasoline.
“It is our privilege to support the NMSDC’s commitment to sustainability through the donation of RECs sourced from Texas-generated wind power. This effort will offset the electricity usage of this year’s conference,” said David Hernandez, co-founder and CEO of Liberty Power.
Liberty Power was first certified by the Southern Florida Minority Development Council and currently has reciprocal agreements with 10 additional regional councils. Liberty Power has also been a Corporate Plus® member in good standing since 2009.
“Year after year, Liberty Power has proven to be a committed supporter of the NMSDC,” said NMSDC President Joset Wright-Lacy. “This year, they’ve extended their generosity to make our conference ‘green’ and help to lessen our carbon footprint. We appreciate the donation of the renewable energy certificates as part of our sustainability efforts.”
About Liberty Power
Headquartered in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, Liberty Power is the largest independent retail electric supplier in the United States based on 2013 KEMA rankings of electric retailers. The company is also the first certified, minority-owned supplier with a national footprint, and the largest Hispanic-owned energy company in the United States according to Hispanic Business. Liberty Power provides large and small businesses, government agencies and residential customers with low-cost electricity and exceptional customer service.
For more information on Liberty Power, please visit www.libertypowercorp.com
Liberty Power is a registered trademark of Liberty Power Corp. LLC, whose subsidiaries are certified and licensed to provide retail electric service by the PUC / PSC of CA, CT, DC, DE, IL, ME, MD, MA, MI, NJ, NY, OH, PA, RI, TX and VA.
About National Minority Supplier Development Council
The National Minority Supplier Development Council is the global leader in advancing business opportunities for its certified Asian, Black, Hispanic and Native American business enterprises and connecting them to member corporations. NMSDC was chartered in 1972 to provide increased procurement and business opportunities for minority businesses of all sizes.
The NMSDC Network includes a national office in New York and regional councils across the country. There are 1,700 corporate members throughout the network, including most of America’s largest publicly-owned, privately-owned and foreign-owned companies, as well as universities, hospitals and other buying institutions. The regional councils certify and match more than 12,000 minority-owned businesses with member corporations that want to purchase their products, services and solutions. www.nmsdc.org
Driving can be a stress reliever for some, but can also be the cause of stress for others. Since transportation accounts for over 70% of oil use in the United States, why not attempt to reduce everyone’s stress level – including the environment’s.
Here are a few tips to improve your gas mileage and reduce harmful emissions:
- Avoid idling. Allow up to 30 seconds in the winter to warm up the engine. Anything over that wastes fuel and increases emissions. Cars warm up simply by driving them.
- Avoid aggressive driving. Don’t speed! Accelerate at a normal pace and don’t brake hard on purpose.
- Avoid keeping heavy items in your car. The more weight in the car, the more gas needed to power the car to move.
- Place items inside the car. Drag can be created by placing items on the roof rack, which can increase fuel economy.
- Combine errands. Driving back and forth several times per week utilizes much more gas than making one long trip.
- Look into carpooling or public transportation. Not using your car is a no brainer for saving on gas.
Your car will thank you, your wallet will thank you, the environment will thank you, and your neighbor might even thank you. Now, go enjoy the ride!
The internet took the world by storm and scientists are predicting the same fate for green technology. People are becoming more educated on the effects their actions have on our planet and are looking for ways to protect it. Reducing carbon emissions and wastes are at the top of the list and the following three innovations are sure to be game changers.
- Green Concrete. Traditional concrete is made of carbon-emitting limestone, whereas green concrete is made of non-carbonate magnesium oxides. It absorbs the carbon dioxide and as a bonus, it’s recyclable.
- Bamboo Laptops. Electronics contribute quite a bit of toxic waste to the planet in the form of e-waste. Bamboo laptops can be the solution to slowing this pile up. Made of biodegradable bamboo, which is also the fastest growing plant in the world, these laptops certainly don’t lack in performance either.
- Underwater Kites. Just as its title implies, underwater kites are literally kites affixed to the ocean floor that can generate tidal energy from turbines attached to them. They harness the power of the tides underwater.
We’re on the verge of a green phenomenon. Hold on to your seats, it’s going to be a whirlwind of innovations.
Source: Greener Ideal