Increase the Use of Alternative Energy: Final Team Project Paper
Anthony Garibaldi, Noelia Huerta, & Samantha Abdo
Lansing Community College
MGMT 231: Developing and Leading Teams
November 24, 2022
Our mission as a team is to increase the use of alternative energy. Our team was hoping to expand the usage of alternative energy, which produces little to no greenhouse gasses, such as carbon dioxide, within our communities. This is an effort to slow down the global effects of using nonrenewable energy. Our vision statement is to create an opportunity for growth and to create a positive impact in our community. Our mission is to show our communities the benefits of using alternative energy sources and the positive impact it can have. We want to create an opportunity for a positive impact within the community, and around the world.
In our previous Team Plan Paper, we outlined how we intended to construct our research and achieve our mission. This paper is the combination of what we were able to achieve in contrast to what we originally planned. For the most part, the outcome of our research followed closely what we originally planned to do. The only thing that remains out of our control is whether or not our research inspires others to implement alternative sources of energy into their own lives.
During the course of our research, we planned to use Deming’s PDSA cycle, which can be found on The W. Edwards Deming Institute website. “The PDSA Cycle (Plan-Do-Study-Act) is a systematic process for gaining valuable learning and knowledge for the continual improvement of a product, process, or service.” (PDSA cycle, 2022) We Plan to choose affordable and accessible applications of Alternative Energy. Then Do research on the costs of implementing the alternative energy source. Followed by a Study to discover the difference between the alternative energy source vs. the cost of traditional sources. Then write a paper about the results. Once completed, we intend to Act by publishing our discovery and works outside of the class to inspire others to implement alternative energy.
We discovered that wind and solar were going to be the most affordable option to switch to. “According to the IEA’s World Energy Outlook and other research projects, solar and wind energy have continued to occupy the top spots in terms of the cheapest renewable energy sources. Both energy sources cost significantly less than fossil fuel alternatives and continue to become more affordable every year” (Malchman, 2022). Solar has significant price decreases in energy and can also increase energy capacity. However, it can be a close race when comparing the overall costs of the energy sources (Malchman, 2022).
When talking about implementing a new system for energy sourcing, the first thing needed to be addressed is the fact that a lot more than the source will need to change. We need the proper infrastructure and technology to succeed in becoming a green planet. This will take time and money to implement, so this paper will cover the cost of implementing solar or wind energy v.s. fossil fuels. The research conducted for this project was based online. We were able to show the community that small efforts among each household will create a greater strive within our community, and for our planet. Small attempts such as shutting off your lights, purchasing insulated curtains, and being considerate on how much you put in your laundry, and how often you do laundry are minor details that not everyone pays attention to. However, if we all focus on these minor details it creates a positive impact, and can be extremely energy efficient for the environment.
For residential prices, solar energy systems are higher in cost up-front than traditional, on-grid energy systems, but you will save money in the long run once installed. “The average price per kilowatt for fossil fuels is between $0.05 and $0.17 compared to solar at $0.03 to $0.06 per kilowatt-hour. Because solar energy is renewable and fossil fuels are not, you will continue to pay for coal energy while power from the sun is free once you cover the cost of your energy system” (The cost of solar vs. coal). Solar installation costs can also be leased instead of a lump sum at the beginning of the process.
For energy production prices, solar and wind energy were higher in cost when they were first introduced but have since then flipped in comparison with fossil fuels. Solar and wind are totally clean sources of energy and are, fortunately, the cheapest alternatives to fossil fuels. This is partially because there is a decline in production costs for solar panels and storage systems. Increased capacity and renewable energy production drive the cost of solar down, while fossil fuel’s constant cost is only increasing.
“Wind energy technology has improved significantly in recent years, resulting in turbines that are larger and produce energy at less cost. Increased turbine hub height, rotor diameter, and nameplate capacity have allowed more energy to be produced per turbine than ever before. The U.S. Department of Energy reports the average nameplate capacity for a newly installed wind turbine in 2015 was 2.0 megawatts, an 180% increase since 1999” (Cost of wind vs. Fossil Fuels). In addition to generating more energy at a lower overall cost, larger turbines have made it possible to economically generate areas with increasingly lower average wind speeds.
We plan to publish our work to StarScapes: Innovation & Creativity Showcase within Lansing Community College. “StarScapes is a student showcase of creative, imaginative, and interesting work. Presentations include projects produced for LCC classes, as well as work developed through students’ own independent study and research. StarScapes is an opportunity for students to share research, capstone presentations, honors option projects, or other work with the LCC community.” (Starscapes) For the Fall Semester, StarScapes will be open for students to add their presentations between November 28 and December 2.
It is our hope that by publishing this research to StarScapes, we will be able to promote and sustain the use of renewable energy and give all of our peers the opportunity to discover that alternative sources of energy are affordable and crucially important. We want to inspire others to expand the usage of alternative energy, which produces little to no greenhouse gasses such as carbon dioxide within our communities, to better our environment and preserve our planet.
Measures of Success
We will measure our success in good faith that by completing this paper, we will have fulfilled our mission statement to promote and sustain the use of renewable energy. We hope that we inspire our community to seek out alternative sources of energy. No one can be forced to make the proposed changes, but the sooner we all look into alternative sources of energy, the better. Our current means of energy sources are becoming hard to come by and very destructive to the environment. Even for those of which do not believe fossil fuels are adding to global warming, it is still a more cost effective approach to energy sourcing. If we are able to inspire anyone to even make small changes toward alternative energy, we will consider our efforts to be a success.
In conclusion, we have been able to work within our communities to increase the use of alternative energy. We were hoping to increase the use of solar and wind energy, however with the cost efficiency that plays a part we were not able to meet our goal as drastically as we were hoping for.
Within our communities we were able to make some differences in minor ways. Our community began to switch off the lights and began to use the sunlight as an alternative light source, each house that did this made a drastic improvement of using solar energy as an alternative energy source, each individual household would not make a huge impact but being that it was all our communities it made a more significant impact.
Another minor impact that increased the use of alternative energy is encouraging our communities to use thick, insulated curtains for the winter months. Using thicker curtains will help with keeping heat in the house and not going out the window which is going to decrease the heat that is produced to continue warming the house in the colder seasons. Unfortunately, there were not as many households that were as willing to do this alternative energy source because it required the household to purchase new curtains.
Overall we were able to successfully accomplish our mission by increasing the use of alternative energy within our community, it was just unfortunately not as drastic an outcome as we were hoping for.
Cost of wind vs. Fossil Fuels. MEIC. (n.d.). Retrieved November 22, 2022, from https://meic.org/cost-of-wind-vs-fossil-fuels/
Huszczo, G. E. (2010). Tools for team leadership: Delivering the X-factor in team
excellence. Davies-Black of Nicholas Brealey Publishing.
Malchman, J. (2022, October 30). Which renewable energy is cheapest? A guide to cost and efficiency. Galooli. Retrieved November 22, 2022, from https://galooli.com/blog/which-renewable-energy-is-cheapest-a-guide-to-cost-and-efficiency/#:~:text=According%20to%20the%20IEA’s%20World,become%20more%20affordable%20every%20year.
PDSA cycle. The W. Edwards Deming Institute. (2022). Retrieved October 13,
2022, from https://deming.org/explore/pdsa/
The cost of solar vs coal. Renova Energy. (n.d.). Retrieved November 22, 2022, from https://www.renovaenergy.com/energy-insights/articles/the-cost-of-solar-vs-coal-1/#:~:text=It%20is%20no%20surprise%20that,to%20%240.06%20per%20kilowatt%2Dhour.
Starscapes. Lansing Community College. (n.d.). Retrieved November 22, 2022, from https://www.lcc.edu/starscapes/