Legislative Branch

Rechargeable Batteries

Mandate that all batteries purchased with Federal dollars be rechargeable (if the size of battery comes in rechargeable). If there is a piece of equipment that requires non-rechargeables (or lithium) in order to perform properly, then require an exception to policy to be turned in with each purchase. This would not cost the Federal Government any money to implement (outside of very minute administrative costs), ...more »

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Department of Homeland Security

Depleted Uranium as Fuel

I have heard of a reactor that uses depleted uranium as a fuel source. It's called a Traveling wave reactor. This would be a good way to get rid of all that DU we have lying around. The down side is that the tech is currently still being researched according to the few pubs I took a look at. As such it is a long tem project which would be a good idea to start now (yes I DO know that we have a buget crises) or at least ...more »

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Environmental Protection Agency

Light it Up Right

Lighting typically accounts for 25% to 50% of energy use in most buildings. During our summer internship at EPA Region 9, we recognized 2 easy ways to increase lighting efficiency: adopting occupancy sensors and LED bulbs. These methods will result in both energy and cost savings. They have been touted for public use by EPA, DOE, and DOI. Occupancy sensors are devices, frequently mounted on the wall or ceiling, ...more »

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Legislative Branch

Neutralize hazardous waste with free power Plasma Arc Processing

Every year the U.S. spends billions in the processing and management of hazardous mixed waste. One increasing valuable method of treating this waste is with plasma-arc processing which can convert mixed waste to much less harmful components. But this uses a lot of expensive electricity often making the method not viable. I suggest setting up plasma arc processing close to a few existing nuclear power plants, many of which ...more »

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Department of Agriculture

Drinking water and other hazardous wastes.

In my agency, the safety folks label everything "hazardous waste" that is used in a lab setting. My idea is to have a list of safe chemicals and substances across government agencies that are considered safe when not combined with unlisted chemicals. As a recent example, when I boil tap water in a clean ceramic container that has never held a chemical other than water, I think "hazardous waste" is a bit excessive. ...more »

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