Lancaster, PA Electrician Directory

Find licensed electrical contractors in Lancaster County, PA for Residential, Commercial & Industrial projects here!

Homeowners need electricians to install new modern circuit breaker electrical service panels replacing antiquated fuse panels. You may need extra outlets installed in an older home that didn't have electrical receptacles installed in every corner of the home. Perhaps you're installing ceiling fans and need them wired to switch panels on the walls. Or, you want to add a hot tub to your backyard and need electrical service installed. You'll find electricians available for all of these services and more here on lancaster electrical .com.

Need an industrial or commercial electrician here in Lancaster County? Whether you need high bay lighting installed or a new three phase feed for that new high powered machine your adding commercial and industrial electricians have the skill set to make every installation and upgrade run smoothly.

 



Read the latest news for licensed electrical contractors in Lancaster County, PA.

Net Zero Energy Buildings on the Rise
Net Zero Energy Buildings on the Rise hsauer Tue, 08/20/2019 - 12:52

Net Zero Energy Buildings on the Rise

The fight against global warming and the expansion of sustainable energy practices have contributed to a number of growing trends, such as electric vehicles, smart homes and distributed generation. Add zero energy or net zero energy buildingsto the list. According to a recent study, they are on the rise. 

Released on July 31, “To Zero and Beyond: Zero Energy Residential Buildings Study” was compiled by Team Zero, a coalition of stakeholders dedicated to promoting zero energy buildings in North America.

The fourth in a series of annual inventories, the study tracks residential activity in the U.S. and Canada and provides an overview of findings from the group’s year-over-year inventory of growth in this particular housing type.

The study resulted in several notable findings. For example, it revealed the number of zero-energy housingunits increased by 59%, from 13,960 to 22,146 since 2017.

The study also identified three categories. A zero-energy ready building can produce up to 90% of a building’s energy needs. Zero-energy is right at 100%, and a net positive building produces 110% or more. According to the study, homes are becoming increasingly more effective, with a 7.2% migration of homes from the zero-energy ready category to zero-energy.

On a regional basis, the southwestern U.S. is the nation’s leader of zero-energy homes. California leads the pack with 6,828 units. Arizona, Colorado and Texas are also in the top ten, giving the southwestern states a combined total of 9,589 units.

Canada is also showing strong growth, with a 240% increase in the number of zero-energy units from 2017.

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Work Injuries Contribute to Opioid-Related Deaths
Work Injuries Contribute to Opioid-Related Deaths hsauer Tue, 08/20/2019 - 12:43

Work Injuries Contribute to Opioid-Related Deaths

Using opioids to medicate pain caused by workplace injuries for more than a week can exacerbate the danger, according to a study by Boston University researchers, published in the American Journal of Industrial Medicine.

If a person is out of work due to an on-the-job injury, the more likely they are to take their own life or die from an opioid overdose, the study found. In fact, the combined risk of suicide and overdose death among the study’s women tripled if they were off of work for a week or more, and the risk rose by 50% among men.

“These findings suggest that work-related injuries contribute to the rapid increase in deaths from both opioids and suicides,” Leslie Boden, BU professor of environmental health and the report’s senior author, said in a BU School of Public Health blog post.

Boden and his colleagues analyzed data on 100,806 workers in New Mexico, 36,034 of whom had lost-time injuries from 1994 through 2000. The researchers used workers’ compensation data for that period, Social Security Administration earnings and mortality data through 2013, and National Death Index cause of death data through 2017.

Men in the study who had lost time on the job due to a workplace injury were 72% more likely to die from suicide and 29% more likely to die from drug-related causes, as well as higher death rates from cardiovascular diseases. Women with lost-time injuries were 92% more likely to die from suicide and 193% more likely to die from drug-related causes.

“Improved pain treatment, better treatment of substance use disorders, and treatment of post-injury depression may substantially improve quality of life and reduce mortality from workplace injuries,” Boden said.

The use of opioids for any length of recovery period is increasingly seen as a potentially dangerous practice, statistics show. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one out of four people prescribed opioids for long-term pain become addicted, increasing the chance for an overdose. More than over 42,000 overdose deaths in 2016 involved an opioid, CDC data shows.

Construction workers are particularly at risk because the industry has one of the highest injury rates and opioids are often prescribed to treat the pain these injuries cause, per The Construction Chart Bookby The Center for Construction Research and Training.

The problem within the construction industry is particularly acute in Massachusetts, one of the highest-ranking states for drug overdose deaths involving opioids. Construction workers represented 25% of all fatal opioid overdoses among the state's workers from 2011 to 2015, according to the state's Department of Public Health.  

In response to the problem, the Massachusetts AGC, in cooperation with a number of construction companies and labor unions in the state, stopped work on approximately 50 sites for a stand-down day on June 5. 

"It was clear we had to do something," said Robert Petrucelli, CEO of the Massachusetts AGC. "No one talks about this, but it permeates our industry."

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EPA Helps Parties Identify Benefits of Renewables
EPA Helps Parties Identify Benefits of Renewables hsauer Tue, 08/20/2019 - 12:28

EPA Helps Parties Identify Benefits of Renewables

State and local policymakers, and others involved in energy generation, are not quantifying or fully reflecting the health benefits of efficiency and renewables projects during decision-making processes, according to a new report from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

The report also noted that these policymakers and others have been asking for the EPA's assistance in understanding the opportunities for using energy efficiency and renewable energy to reduce air pollution and improve public health. "State and local decision-makers may not be fully aware of or confident in the available quantification tools and methods; or they lack the time, resources, or expertise needed to quantify the health benefits of renewables and efficiency," said the report.

The report, titled "Public Health Benefits per kWh or Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy in the United States" is designed to help state and local policymakers and other interested parties quantify the benefits of improved air quality achieved using energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies.

It provides a "benefits per kilowatt hour" estimate for different regions of the nation. The calculations are based on reduced mortality rates from key pollutants, specifically sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides and fine particulate matter. In addition, the report provides values in four different areas: uniform energy efficiency, peak energy efficiency, solar energy and wind energy. 

One organization actively encouraging policymakers and others to make use of the report is the Alliance to Save Energy (ASE). "What this report confirms is that energy efficiency is saving much more than just dollars and cents on your utility bill," said Jason Hartke, president of the ASE. "It's giving us cleaner air and improved health, and that is delivering huge economic benefits. Too often, we are not taking those benefits into account when making decisions, particularly in Washington. This is exactly the kind of information policy-makers need to make better decisions that fully account for the many co-benefits of efficiency. When you look at the full picture, it's painfully clear we should be investing a lot more in efficiency at the state, local, and federal levels."

The EPA encourages interested parties, including energy efficiency and renewable energy project developers, to download a free copy of the report.

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Lights Out on Grid Repair Deal in Puerto Rico
Lights Out on Grid Repair Deal in Puerto Rico hsauer Fri, 08/16/2019 - 09:14

Lights Out on Grid Repair Deal in Puerto Rico

Two years after Hurricane Maria ravaged Puerto Rico, the repair and recovery of the island’s power delivery system is still underway.

This week that effort encountered a setback when Governor Wanda Vazquez announced that she plans to cancel a deal for grid repair work between Canadian engineering firm Stantec and Puerto Rico's Electric Power Authority (PREPA), according to Utility Dive

The governor’s reasoning for her decision was not apparent. She used social media to make her announcement by posting a statement to Twitter on Sunday evening, August 11 at 7:30 p.m.

In her statement, she said all government contracts will be reevaluated in the name of "transparency." She added that "in this administration there is no room for unreasonable expenses." According to the governor, the canceled deal is valued at $450,000.

Hurricane Mariawreaked havoc on Puerto in 2017, killing more than 3,000 people and destroying the island’s power delivery system. The island was left completely without power for months. Some parts remained in the dark for a year.

The centerpiece of the recovery is the goal to reach 100 percent renewables by the year 2050. In pursuit of that goal, PREPA plans to install almost 1.4 GW of solar generation and 920 MW of battery storage in the first four years of its overhaul, from 2019 to 2022.

Vasquez’s decision comes only days into her term. She took office on August 7. Her predecessor, Gov. Ricardo Rosselló, resigned a few days before in the face of controversy and a possible impeachment by the state legislature, according to ABC News. Protestors had taken to the streets and public figures had called for his resignation after a private chat with aides revealed possible criminal behavior and a disdainful attitude toward the public and political opponents. The scandal was also fueled by long-simmering resentment over political corruption and mismanagement, including a poor response to Hurricane Maria.

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New Seattle Substation is One of a Kind
New Seattle Substation is One of a Kind hfullmer Thu, 08/15/2019 - 15:13

New Seattle Substation is One of a Kind

Seattle City Light's new Denny Substation is, in the utility's own words, "not your typical substation.” It is unusual both in its design and its location, which is in the middle of Seattle’s historic Cascade neighborhood.

The design represents two years of work by City Light and its design team, and reflects the input of area stakeholders and the guidance of the Seattle Design Commission. While the substation meets the functional power needs of supporting and serving the expansion and growth of the area, it is also an environmentally-friendly, visually appealing and neighborhood-conducive asset.

Denny Substation Seattle
Photo by Benjamin Benschneider

While the majority of the site is utilized for substation operations, the design reflects community priorities, such as scenic open spaces and sustainability. The project includes over 44,000 square feet of open space, on-site solar power, a heat recovery system that provides 100 percent of the required heating for many facilities within the substation and a number of other sustainability features.

The substation features sloped enclosure walls that decrease the size of the facility at the pedestrian level, creating a friendlier urban environment along the perimeter, and the walls include metal cladding and translucent glass panels that emit a soft glow at night.

In addition, as part of the terracing, an elevated pedestrian walkway wraps the edge of the substation. This elevated zone is fully accessible, with gentle slopes to allow for views into the substation as well as the surrounding cityscape. The substation itself is open in its design, in that it has no roof. However, most of the substation equipment is hidden from public view within buildings.

Denny Substation in Seattle Photo by Benjamin Benschneider
Photo by Benjamin Benschneider

Other features of the substation grounds include open public spaces, an off-leash dog area, an event zone, and a community space for events, meetings, and lectures, including art displays.

The substation itself includes:

  • four bays of 115kV gas insulated switchgear (GIS)
  • three 115-13.8kV power transformers
  • one 115kV line reactor with integrated GIS
  • one 13.8kV switchgear building
  • two 13.8kV capacitor banks
  • three 13.8kV grounding banks
  • connecting cables
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Heat Safety Standard Bill Proposed in Congress
Heat Safety Standard Bill Proposed in Congress hsauer Thu, 08/15/2019 - 11:54

Heat Safety Standard Bill Proposed in Congress

Heat waves and intense summer temperatures can be deadly, especially for those that work in physical jobs. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics'(BLS) most recent data, 38 workers died from exposure to temperature extremes in 2017. A newly proposed bill to Congress could help mitigate these dangers.

In July, Representative Judy Chu (D-CA)along with 21 other representatives introduced H.R. 3668 Asuncion Valdivia Illness and Prevention Act, which if passed would require the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), to create within 42 months, a standard to protect workers, indoors and out, from heat-related injuries and illnesses.

Currently, OSHA has a Heat Illness Prevention Campaign, which includes resources, education and guidelines on the dangers of working in heat, but no related standards. 

The act, named for a worker who died of heatstroke while working for 10 hours straight in 105-degree heat with no breaks, would require employers to create heat plans to safeguard against the health risks of working in dangerously hot temperatures, including mandatory paid breaks, shade or cool-down areas, reliable access to water, limitations on how long workers can be exposed to high temperatures and emergency response plans.

If passed, the legislation would also require employers to provide annual training for employees and supervisors on heat safety, recordkeeping on heat-related illnesses and deaths and protection for whistleblowers reporting unsafe heat conditions. 

Concerns over worker’s exposure to heat was also raised in 2018when more than 130 organizations and 90 individuals petitionedthe acting OSHA leader Loren Sweatt to create a federal heat standard as part of a campaign led by Public Citizen, a nonprofit, liberal consumer rights advocacy group. The group cited data from the BLS that states from 1992 through 2016 exposure to excessive environmental heat stress killed 783 U.S. workers and seriously injured 69,374 workers. Signatories included major universities, public health organizations, other advocacy groups and two former OSHA directors. 

H.R. 2668 has been referred to the House Committee on Educational and Labor and another 30 representatives have signed on to co-sponsor the legislation. 

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Bullying Bosses Threaten Workplace Safety
Bullying Bosses Threaten Workplace Safety hfullmer Thu, 08/15/2019 - 11:39

Bullying Bosses Threaten Workplace Safety

A new study published in the Journal of Applied Psychology by researchers at Portland State University suggests that bosses who bully employees not only lower the morale at work but can also lead to problems with workplace safety.

Liu-Qin Yang, an associate professor of industrial organizational psychology, and her co-authors, found that the safety behavior of employees who are bullied by their bosses can worsen, since, among other things, the bullying distracts and detracts from workers connection to coworkers.

According to the study, a boss’s behavior can strengthen or weaken worker’s sense of belonging to the work group by either supporting or undermining their status within the group. When treated poorly by a supervisor, employees can feel less valued by the group as a whole. As a result, the employees may focus more on themselves, leading them to overlook safety rules and opportunities to promote a safe work environment.

Employees who are more uncertain about their social standing within the work group are particularly vulnerable and can have stronger negative responses to the bully boss.

"When people are less sure about their strengths and weaknesses and their status within a group, they become more sensitive," Yang said.

"Organizations need to understand how important it is to curb leaders' bad behavior and to create positive team dynamics, so that there will be fewer negative safety consequences for employees or customers," she said. "It's really critical to manage such leader behavior, support victimized employees, and prevent such issues."

The study recommends that employers:

  • Train leaders to improve interactions with employees, such as providing feedback in ways that are not offensive or threatening.
  • Promote a work environment that strengthens social bonds between employees to create a buffer against the negative consequences of bosses' bad behaviors.
  • Implement transparent performance evaluation processes so employees are clear about their social status in the workplace.
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Storage Installations to Multiply Exponentially, Says BNEF
Storage Installations to Multiply Exponentially, Says BNEF tjohnson Fri, 08/09/2019 - 12:31

Storage Installations to Multiply Exponentially, Says BNEF

As demand for energy storage continues to rise and as battery costs fall and renewable energy proliferates, storage installations around the world will “multiply exponentially,” according to the Bloomberg New Energy Finance report, “Energy Storage Outlook 2019.”

Installations will rise 122-fold from 9 gigawatt/17 gigawatt-hour (GWh) in 2018, to 1,095 GW/2,850 GWh by 2040, BNEF forecasts. While it will take $662 billion in investments to make this happen, such a massive increase will be made possible by further sharp declines in the cost of lithium-ion batteries. This is on top of the 85% reduction in costs of the batteries from 2010 to 2018.

Indeed, BNEF predicts that lithium-ion battery costs per kilowatt-hour will be halved again by 2030, due mainly from increased demand from stationary storage and electric vehicles, as well as the global electric grid being “increasingly penetrated by low-cost wind and solar.”

Yayoi Sekine, BNEF’s energy storage analyst and co-author of the report, said that this year’s report contains two significant changes from 2018: the analysts raised their estimate of the investment that will go into energy storage by 2040 by more than $40 billion, and they now expect that the majority of new capacity will be utility-scale, rather than behind-the-meter at homes and businesses.

As battery costs continue to fall, they will be able to be used in increasingly more applications, according to the report. These include energy shifting—moving in time the dispatch of electricity to the grid, often from times of excess solar and wind generation; peaking in the bulk power system to deal with demand spikes; and customers buying electricity at cheap hours and using it later in order looking to save on their energy bills.

“In the near term, renewables-plus-storage, especially solar-plus-storage, has become a major driver for battery build,” said Logan Goldie-Scot, BNEF’s head of energy storage. “This is a new era of dispatchable renewables, based on new contract structures between developer and grid.”

Nearly three quarters of the global market in gigawatt terms will be represented by just 10 markets, according to the report. Currently South Korea leads, “but will soon cede that position,” to be far eclipsed by China and the U.S. by 2040. The remaining significant markets include India, Germany, Latin America, Southeast Asia, France, Australia and the United Kingdom.

“There is a fundamental transition developing in the power system and transportation sector,” the authors write. “Falling wind, solar and battery costs mean wind and solar are set to make up almost 40 percent of world electricity in 2040, up from 7 percent today.”

At the same time, passenger electric vehicles could become a third of the global passenger vehicle fleet by 2040, up from less than half a percent today, “adding huge scale to the battery manufacturing sector.”

“Demand for storage will increase to balance the higher proportion of variable, renewable generation in the electricity system,” the authors write. “Batteries will increasingly be chosen to manage this dynamic supply and demand mix.”

Energy storage will become a practical alternative to new-build electricity generation or network reinforcement, according to the report. Behind-the-meter storage will also increasingly be used to provide system services on top of customer applications.

The total demand for batteries from the stationary storage and electric transport sectors is forecast to be 4,584 GWh by 2040, “providing a major opportunity for battery makers and miners of component metals such as lithium, cobalt and nickel,” the authors write.

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Congress Moves to Extend Solar Investment Tax Credit
Congress Moves to Extend Solar Investment Tax Credit tjohnson Fri, 08/09/2019 - 11:26

Congress Moves to Extend Solar Investment Tax Credit

Federal support of solar power has been an unpredictable ally over the years, as politics have more than once cast a long shadow over the renewal of tax credits.

This year, members of Congress have taken steps to remove that uncertainty by extending the credit for another five years before it sunsets.

In July, U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) introduced legislation to bolster clean energy in a number of ways. Among other things, the Renewable Energy Extension Act would extend the solar investment tax credit (ITC) and other clean energy tax incentives that are set to begin expiring at the end of this year.

The tax credits received an extension in 2015 and were expected to be incrementally phased out at the end of this year. The Act would provide a five-year extension of both the ITC and the residential renewable energy tax credit for solar power.

In addition to solar, the bill extends the ITC for other clean energy technologies, such as fiber-optic solar, fuel cells, small wind, microturbines, combined heat and power and geothermal heat pumps.

The ITC is a 30% tax credit for solar power systems on residential and commercial properties. The commercial credit can be applied to both customer-sited commercial solar systems and large-scale utility solar farms.

According to the Solar Energy Industry Association, since the ITC's implementation in 2006, it has helped the U.S. solar industry grow by more than 10,000%.

Momentum for an extension of the ITC began earlier this summer. According to Utility Dive, in June, Senator Cortez Masto and 19 other Senators sent a letter to the Senate Finance Committee Chair and Ranking Member, urging the Committee to prioritize and preserve the ITC and other clean energy credits. In July, nearly 1,000 solar companies called on Congress to extend the solar ITC.

Senator Cortez Masto’s legislation is co-sponsored by fifteen of her colleagues. U.S. Representative Mike Thompson (D-Calif.) introduced a bipartisan companion bill in the House of Representatives.

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