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The Irony of Going Green

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posted on Sep, 11 2009 @ 09:24 PM
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Actually, there are a log of ironies about going "Green" but I thought I would give one perfect example from my personal experience.

Despite being a SysAdmin who has worked professionally with computers for a quarter of a century, I'm not a big fan of electronic gadgets. Sure, I have my main Computer, an HTPC, a Home Server, an LED LCD TV, a Laptop, a Cable Modem, a Wireless Router, an MP3 Player, a Cellphone, an obscenely loud Stereo Component System with Speakers bigger than me, and an Electric Guitar and Amplifier, and a list of other sundry gadgets, but my life doesn't revolve around them and they don't get used more than twice a week each. Most of the time I'm sitting at my Calligraphy Desk copying books and manuscripts by candlelight.

To date, my largest power bill has only been $13 a month.

To better decrease my dependence on Electricity, I went gung-ho Eco-Terrorist Green and replaced all the Light Bulbs in the house with 30 LED Light Bulbs (which give off a strange light spectrum...they are very, very bright, but the color is taking some getting used to). They use 7W instead of 60-75W with standard Incandescent Bulbs. I figured that would make a huge dent in my power usage.

So, I flipped when I got last month's power bill of $13.69, the most expensive I've gotten ever!

Granted, my Power Usage was only 100kw, but looking at a breakdown of my bill, it became clear why my bill wasn't going down, but up!

My actual charge for the 100kw of Electricity I used was $3.00.

Then there was the Delivery Charge of $4.72 (I would have walked to the Power Plant to pick the electricity up myself to save $4.72!)
A State Tax Charge of $0.19
Supply Service Energy Block of $5.11 (this is to charge me for the power they set aside for me to use that I didn't use. Since I didn't use it, I still have to pay for it?)
Public Purpose Charge of $0.39 (this goes to powering the street lights which are all broken at the moment)
Energy Conservation Charge of $0.12 (I thought that I *WAS* conserving energy! Why charge me for it!)
Low Income Assistance Charge of $0.20 (Help the poor people...I can live with that)
Environmental Benefits Charge of $0.48 (Okay, I'll pay to help the environment too, but I thought I was already doing that myself)
City Franchise Fee of $0.44 (The city charges me to allow a monopoly the right to charge me what they want without competition! Good grief!)

So, basically Fees and Taxes that are Flat-Rate and are not based upon actual usage!

I was thinking of swapping out the Water Heater with a Energy Conserving Hot Water On Demand Flash-Heater, switching my Stove, Refrigerator and Dishwasher with more Energy Efficient models, and looking into replacing the Baseboard Heaters with a more efficient Central Heating System...but why bother if I'm not going to save myself anything on my Electrical Bill? Sure, I'd be helping further reduce my power consumption even more, but entirely at a cost to me and no benefit other than a "feel-good" tingly sensation in my bosom.

With no Financial Benefit or Incentive it becomes difficult to consider doing more than my share to leave a smaller Carbon Footprint.

I think I'm going to instead focus my efforts on being able to recycle 100% of my Garbage Waste until I'm not contributing to Landfills anymore than try to reduce my Power Consumption further. At least if I can accomplish that, I could save $25 a month by canceling Garbage Pick-up Service.

[edit on 11-9-2009 by fraterormus]




posted on Sep, 11 2009 @ 09:31 PM
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Oh now, come on, Frat.


You gotta take one for team on this one. This of all the plankton, man. They would be DELIGHTED to have it as easy as you mister.

But seriously WOW. I'm impressed that your bill is so low. It would seem to me, through your description of efforts you have made, that you are doing YOUR part.

I'm afraid it's just going to keep up, no matter WHAT you do...I suppose you're supposed to be happy to bend over and not concerned with the reality of your green efforts. Maybe we should be happy to pay more, if it means we're making a difference.



posted on Sep, 11 2009 @ 09:50 PM
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Rather than cutting down the electronics further, why not go the whole 9 yards and shove it to the electric company altogether?

Buy some bulk solar cells off ebay, they are ridiculously cheap there, factory defects with small errors in the processing. Build a couple of Solar Panels. For $70 you would be able to build enough panels to supply all your power needs for the month, add in a hundred or two for a battery array to store the energy.

You save the cash on replacing all your appliances, the company can no longer rape you for a profit, everyone is happy


Edited to say: At 100kwh, you would most likely only need 3 panels at the max


[edit on 11-9-2009 by D.E.M.]



posted on Sep, 11 2009 @ 09:56 PM
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Hey Frat,

You got one cheap bill I gotta say. The taxes, fees, and other crap always tee'd me off. I really learned to hate that.

Speaking of green I am studying straw bale construction right now, and using a dirt roof. My thought process is to trick the PTB into not realizing A. that I even have a house, as the top would be covered by grass, B. should I get permits, and all then having it built non conventionally, and not of standard shape or size it'll be more difficult to "assess"



posted on Sep, 11 2009 @ 10:03 PM
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Hey !

Do what DEM suggests, and your electric meter could go
BACKWARDS. You could SELL electricity to THEM ! ! B-)
. . .I think. . .I hope. . .

Blue skies.



posted on Sep, 11 2009 @ 10:04 PM
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reply to post by sanchoearlyjones
 


Indeed. I too have been studying various traditional building methods such as Cob. The problem (at least in Canada) is that there is absolutely no land for sale at an affordable price, and the building codes are so corporate-slanted that nothing aside from mcmansions can be built.

...I'm actually considering moving to Wales. Land is somehow cheaper there, than in Canada. That's just wrong.



posted on Sep, 11 2009 @ 10:14 PM
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The commercial green movement is a huge scam. The utility companies will NOT lose money when the entire nation has switched to cfl and energy star appliances.

Consumption may decrease but the rates will only go up to maintain the bottom line. I have switched my entire house to cfl and I haven't saved a dime. It is crock of $#@! GE will certainly continue to make profits.

The only way to save is to go off the grid completely. If you live where I do, the cold long winters make that really difficult.



posted on Sep, 11 2009 @ 11:28 PM
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Thats's a good idea, ill get me some solar panals so i can stick it to those greedy electric companies



posted on Sep, 11 2009 @ 11:41 PM
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reply to post by Stop-loss!
 


I...fail to see the need for sarcasm. 3-4 solar panels would be more than sufficient for his stated needs of 100kwh. Independence from the grid is a good thing for multiple reasons, not deserving of ridicule?



posted on Sep, 12 2009 @ 01:16 AM
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Originally posted by D.E.M.
Rather than cutting down the electronics further, why not go the whole 9 yards and shove it to the electric company altogether?

Buy some bulk solar cells off ebay, they are ridiculously cheap there, factory defects with small errors in the processing. Build a couple of Solar Panels. For $70 you would be able to build enough panels to supply all your power needs for the month, add in a hundred or two for a battery array to store the energy.

You save the cash on replacing all your appliances, the company can no longer rape you for a profit, everyone is happy


Edited to say: At 100kwh, you would most likely only need 3 panels at the max


[edit on 11-9-2009 by D.E.M.]


Please tell me where I can find those 33kW solar panels for $70 because I'm about to start my own power company!



posted on Sep, 12 2009 @ 11:27 AM
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reply to post by daniel_g
 


Hmm, yes, posting when stupidly sleepy is a bad idea. Dropped the K on Kwh when looking at ebay cell listings. My bad.



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