Yesterday it all became clear to me. My purpose, my goal, my future. My mission in the last year and a half has been to learn all that I can about renewable energy.
The broad spectrum of my classes, workshops, and independent research as a graduate student introduced me to renewable energy technologies, fuel source comparisons, sustainable building design, conservation and efficiency, life cycle assessment, carbon footprint accounting, control systems, supply chain mgmt, material disposal and recycling, power purchase agreements, energy market forecasting, and project management. I have many to thank for getting me to where I am now - professors, scientists, activists, CEOs, friends, and authors - and from which I have had the great fortune of learning from.
All the knowledge thrown my way has made it difficult to encompass everything into one career path. Do I want to focus on renewable energy purchase agreements? energy market forecasting? corporate social responsibility? energy conservation in manufacturing? efficient equipment sales? Yes. I want to do it all. Recently I have been conflicted by my desires for energy efficiency initiatives. If I were to audit a manufacturing plant and recommend that they replace their 1970s boiler by investing in a high efficiency - low carbon emission - low operating cost boiler, then what have I actually accomplished? Have I really provided a service by telling them to replace (obviously) old and (obviously) not broken equipment by guaranteeing an payback on their investment through operating cost savings? I think so.
As an energy professional, it is my responsibility to identify potential opportunities to reduce energy consumption. Because the more you use, the more waste becomes available. With the simple notion of [ Pollution = Inefficiency ], I can stand behind my broad environmental intentions in saying that by performing an audit, assessing inventory of processes and materials, pinpointing sources of energy consumption, scrutinizing your supply chain, and managing your waste and recycling procedures - I can help you become a more profitable, competitive, and healthier business. How clear is that!