A Nonprofit Energy 
Research Organization

SEP Priorities


Utility and energy company information bombards the public, regulators, and elected officials daily. Sometimes the “facts” offered (costs, reliability, safety, etc.) do not pass muster on closer examination. Examples have been provided above, and we will monitor regulatory proceedings, utility newsletters, conference presentations, newspaper articles, television, and other sources for inaccurate or dubious statements. SEP will pursue a finite number of issues at a time, such as assertions regarding renewable technology costs, reliability, or safety, and will research and answer. We will not rely heavily on conventional means of information dissemination, such as reports and articles; instead we will emphasize the internet (e.g. blogs) and social media to spread the word. For example, video interviews of selected experts posted on SEP’s Facebook page will be far more prevalent than conventionally-published material. That said, we will not ignore newspaper editorials, newspaper ads, speeches, and articles in selected publications. We will also rely on reader input for selecting topics for research and discussion.

This New House

Many demonstration projects have been conducted for new technologies. A review of virtually any of their reports, however, shows tables of engineering data, and a discussion of the data that leaves the reader wondering whether the technology being tested is working as expected or not. This New House will be a residential demonstration of several technologies - all considered part of a sustainable energy system. Technologies may include all or any combination of PVs, backup generators, batteries, charging controls, energy management systems, EV charging/discharge practices, advanced lighting, geothermal heating/cooling, and residential-scale wind systems. While technical and engineering data will be collected, the principle product of This New House will be anecdotal – provided by people actually living in the test house(s). Followers of the project will hear answers to everyday questions – was your water hot? Did the lights flicker? Was the TV bright? Do all four computers and printers function as expected? Did you have to make any adjustments for having the gang over for Thanksgiving? And so on…. Initially, we hope to create a regular webcast for conveying answers, but we will also pursue the creation of a TV show on PBS or an appropriate cable network, such as HGTV.

The School Science Climate Project

Sadly, high school science teachers are not statistically distinguishable from the general population with regard to climate change denial – deniers constitute about 30%. They also aren’t aware that 97% of the scientific community agrees that climate change is caused by man’s activities – most believe that scientists are split 80/20. Few are either equipped or willing to provide students any references or direction that may discourage climate change denial; on the contrary, energy companies and their myriad foundations and “researchers” are among the few entities reaching out to teachers, and as one would expect, their information promotes climate change denial. SEP will provide teachers with on-line lectures and teaching materials, as well as in-person workshops aimed at educating them about the climate change consensus held by 97% of the scientific community. Dr. Charles Bayless, an SEP Board Member, has taped a series of lectures on climate change.  You can view them here: 

Climate Change with Charles Bayless:

Part 1:

Part 2:

Part 3:

While somewhat technical, these lectures demonstrate how compelling the case for climate change can be made. Dr. Alan Lloyd, also an SEP Board Member and distinguished environmental scientist and regulator, will join Dr. Bayless and other SEP personnel and consultants to make an informative and understandable climate change lecture series for high school science teachers.