posted on Sep, 11 2009 @ 09:24 PM
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]