For Climate Change, Joe Biden missed commercial LED lighting, air conditioning optimization and other solutions


Posted on Monday 9th September 2019

Climate Change: On September 4, 2019, CNN ran seven hours of Climate Change Town Hall programming with ten of the Democratic Presidential Candidates, focused on the Climate Crisis. The intentions of the candidates are admirable, but their lack of knowledge on the details of cost-effective solutions is apparent based on their repeated focus on solar, wind, and electric cars over energy efficiency measures for commercial buildings. Saving electricity for existing buildings is much more cost-effective than trying to make electricity through renewable power. Key points not covered by the candidates included:

  • America uses 25% of the world’s energy with less than 5% of the population.
  • Buildings account for 40% of America's energy use.
  • Air Conditioning and Lighting typically use over half of a building’s energy (Over 25% each for AC and lighting)
  • The private sector has financing in place, so that building owners pay ZERO upfront and there is ZERO cost to taxpayers - a Win/Win with a cooler planet as a result.


Here is the “Score Card” from all 10 candidates and the 60,748 words in the combined transcripts from their CNN Climate Change Town Hall appearances:


  • Wind power references: 42
  • Solar power references: 37
  • Light bulbs (for homes) references: 16
  • Electric Cars references: 14


Here is what the candidates should have referenced, but failed to do so, given that they had long format segments vs the shorter debate “sound bites” time limits:


  • Commercial Lighting references: 0
  • Commercial Air Conditioning and/or HVAC references: 0
  • Indoor or Vertical Farming references: 0
  • Waste to Fuel (e.g. Hyrothermal Carbonization) references: 0


While some candidates spoke generally about building efficiency, they only scratched the surface rather than giving examples and reinforcing the fact that proven technology is at hand to take a massive bite out of American energy consumption and create millions of jobs along the way.


Here is key information on four cost-effective and proven clean technologies that the candidates and elected officials across the US need to know about to help guide America toward PRACTICAL sustainability and job creation:

#1: Climate Change Solution - Commercial Light-emitting Diode (LED) Lighting

Savings Potential: 50% or more energy savings over traditional lighting

Climate Change Highlights: Lighting is the “low hanging” fruit of energy savings, and it is typically the second largest consumer of electricity in buildings, accounting for over 20% of kilowatt use. Light-emitting diodes (LEDs) are proven to save over half of the operating cost and last more than five times as long as traditional lights. With over 3 billion square feet of federal real estate, the savings is over $1 billion per year, not to mention the other 87 billion square feet of private sector non-residential real estate.

Climate Change Return on Investment (ROI): Payback in 2 years or less

Climate Change Sample Applications: Hospitals, Hotels, Office Buildings, Data Centers, Shopping Malls, etc.

Website for more information: Made in USA LED Lighting + Sample LED Lighting Case Studies


#2: Climate Change Solution - Commercial Air Conditioning Optimization

Savings Potential: 15% to 40% energy savings for central cooling systems

Climate Change Highlights: Air Conditioning (AC) is typically the largest consumer of electricity in buildings, accounting for over 30% of kilowatt use. AC optimization focuses on “tuning” air conditioning systems through advanced algorithm, without changing any of the cooling equipment, without impacting thermostat settings, and without generating any downtime or upfront costs.

Climate Change Return on Investment (ROI): Payback in 2 years or less

Climate Change Sample Applications: Hospitals, Hotels, Office Buildings, Data Centers, Shopping Malls, etc.

Website for more information: Air Conditioning Optimization (with Download to One Page Data Sheet)

Sample market traction: Energy Saving AC Case Studies


#3: Climate Change Solution - Indoor Farming - Controlled Environment Agriculture

Savings Potential: 90% less water and 30% energy savings over traditional food production

Highlights: Controlled Environment Agriculture (CEA) “Indoor Farming” is now economically viable due to the efficiency of LED Grow Lights. Indoor Farming reduces transportation costs of moving vegetables from Farm to Table, increases health with pesticide-free production, and increases flavor and nutrition. Fresh local produce is the Future of Food.

Climate Change Return on Investment (ROI): Payback in 2 years or less

Climate Change Sample Applications: Conversion of vacant commercial and industrial properties as well as new greenhouse construction.

Website for more information: LED Grow Lights


Bonus:  K-12 Schools are increasingly focusing on Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) Education. Sample STEM Education - See the content for classroom programs starting on page #55 with sample curriculum.


#4: Waste to Fuel - Hydrothermal Carbonization

Savings Potential: The US could reduce 10% or more of its dependency on fossil fuels.

Climate Change Highlights: Hydrothermal Carbonization (HTC) cost-effectively converts bio waste, such as food and human waste, into electricity for buildings, fertilizer for agriculture, and hydrogen for next-generation transportation. The HTC reactors use heat (approx 200° C “pizza oven” heat at 400° F) and pressure (approx 20,000 pascals “scuba tank” pressure 3,000 lbs/sq in) to create hydrochar within an hour, while the earth has taken over 100 million years to create fossil fuels. The HTC reactors are approximately the size of 40 ft shipping containers.

Climate Change Return on Investment (ROI): Payback in 3 years or less

Climate Change Sample Applications: Municipalities, University Campuses, Office Parks, Shopping Malls, etc.

Website for more information: Waste to Fuel


Support Information

Here is the link to the presentation file from Charlie Szoradi, CEO of Independence LED Lighting and the Energy Intelligence Center. He was invited by the Council of State Governments (CSG) to speak at the Easter Regional Conference on July 29, 2019. Contact: Charlie Szoradi 610-551-5224 or


Presentation slide show:


The presentation was specifically for CSG’s Energy and Environment Committee, and here is the link to the 12 minute video of the presentation:


CNN Climate Change Town Hall – Transcripts

For your convenience here is the beginning of the transcript, and click here for the full Climate Change transcripts for all 10 Democratic Presidential Candidates, who participated in the CNN Climate Change Town Hall


Climate Crisis Town Hall with Joe Biden (D), Presidential Candidate. Aired 8-8:40p ET

Aired September 4, 2019 - 20:00   ET



ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: And welcome to our viewers in the United States and around the world. I'm Anderson Cooper.

Now, scientists tells us that if our planet warms more than 2.7 degrees Fahrenheit, which is 1.5 degrees Celsius, we are facing massive and dangerous tipping points. Flooded coastal cities, island nations underwater, and the destruction of coral reefs.

So tonight CNN is dedicating an entire night to the climate emergency and how the top 10 Democratic presidential candidates plan to address this urgent threat. We're coming to you, of course, tonight just as Hurricane Dorian, the strongest storm anywhere on the planet this year, has decimated parts of the Bahamas and is threatening the East Coast.

Ahead, we'll speak with Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren. Joining me right now on stage, former Vice President Joe Biden.


COOPER: Nice to see you, sir.


So, welcome. Going to have an audience question in a minute. I just want to -- just some broad strokes here. Your climate plan calls for zero -- net zero emissions by the year 2050. There's a lot of policymakers out there who say, look, it's got to be done faster, they're talking 10, 12 years. Your climate change plan talks about spending $1.7 trillion. There's other candidates out there who are talking about spending $16 trillion. Is your plan aggressive enough? I guess that's the question people are asking.

JOE BIDEN (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Yes, I think it is aggressive enough. It has gotten good reviews from most of the environmental community. It's been rated very highly. And I think that it is aggressive enough.

But, look, science and technology are going to change. And as it changes, we learn more, we can do more. I mean, I'd love to do it by 2030. I'd love to do it by 2035, in terms of net zero emissions, but I know no scientist who says that's able to be done right now. But one thing we have to do, we have to start quickly, we have to start and do things that we know can be done immediately, and progress from there and just keep moving. There's a lot we have to do by 2030 just to set in place a set of institutional structures that mean you can't turn it around, like this president has done, the few things that were, in fact, in place.

COOPER: I want to go to the audience. I want you to meet Katie Eder from Shorewood, Wisconsin.

BIDEN: Hey, Katie.

COOPER: She's 19 years old. She's the executive director of Future Coalition, which is helping to organize a youth-led global strike later this month to draw attention to the climate crisis. Katie?

BIDEN: Good for you, Katie.

QUESTION: Hi, good evening. My question for you is, older generations have continued to fail our generation by repeatedly choosing money and power over our lives and our futures. So how we can trust you to put us, the future, over the wants of large corporations and wealthy individuals?

BIDEN: Because I've never done it. I've never made that choice my whole career. Simple. I mean, look, I got involved back in 1986. I introduced a climate change plan that PolitiFact said was a game- changer. I've been involved in everything from making sure we go with -- back in the '90s -- everything I've done has been done to take on the polluters and take on those who are, in fact, decimating our environment. I mean, that's been my career.

COOPER: Would you support a carbon tax? Some other candidates say they would.

BIDEN: Yeah, no, I would. But here's what we have to do. Look, the bottom line of this is, what we have to do is we have to understand that you need to be able to bring people and countries and interests together to get anything done. You can have -- plans are great, but executing on those plans is a very different thing. We make up -- it's the existential threat of not this generation, but the whole world, the existential threat that exists, if we don't move on it, number one.

COOPER: You say this is an existential threat.

BIDEN: It is an existential threat. There is no doubt about that. And the fact of the matter is that we make up 15 percent of the problem. The rest of the world makes up 80 percent, 85 percent of the problem. If we did everything perfectly, everything, and we must and should in order to get other countries to move, we still have to get the rest of the world to come along.

And the fact of the matter is, we have to up the ante considerably. And I have great experience in leading coalitions both at home and internationally. And I think I can do that better than anybody who -- no matter what their plans are.

COOPER: Well, that's one of the things that President Trump has said about the climate change accord, the agreement is that other countries, even if we do everything right, other countries are not going to be following it and therefore it's not worth being part of it.

BIDEN: Well, he's dead wrong across the board on basically everything. You know? No, I mean, I'm not being facetious. Look, you know, we've got to start choosing science over fantasy here.

The fact of the matter is that what he did by removing the United States as the leader of the Paris climate accord, he, in fact, dissipated the enthusiasm across the board. The rest of the countries are saying, whoa, wait a minute, why are we engaged in this if the United States is stepping down?

We're in a position where when we put that together -- and I was the one that suggested to the president -- President Obama, I don't want to confuse presidents here -- President Obama that China would be part of this effort when I came back after a long meeting with Xi Jinping in Beijing. And he was.

But here's the deal. The deal is now what's happened is that, as we have pulled out, there is no leadership. There is no leadership. I know almost every one of these world leaders. If I were -- if I had been president today, I would have at the G7 made sure this became the topic. There would be no empty chair.

I would be pulling the G7 together. I would be down with the president of Brazil saying enough is enough. This is what we're going to do, and this is what's going to happen if you don't do it. This is -- to bring the world together.

Folks, look, this is such an urgent problem. We need to be able -- the first thing I'd do as president of the United States is call a meeting of all the nations who signed onto the accord in Washington, D.C., to up the ante, because we have learned so much just in the last three years about the science of what has to happen quicker.

And the world knows it. And we should be in a position where we generate support around the rest of the world, and those who don't do their part, don't participate, then, in fact, they face consequences. They face consequences.


More: Click here for the full Climate Change transcripts for all 10 Democratic Presidential Candidates, who participated in the CNN Climate Change Town Hall


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