Energy Tough Love (smart metering and digital metering)

Friday, August 10, 2007

Energy Tough Love

Learning how you burn things up and when is the key to stopping burning things up. Learning how much it costs to burn is also incentive not to burn. Say gasoline prices rise to $4.00 per gallon. You might not necessarily sell your car but you would be very careful about when you buy gasoline, say in the morning when its cooler and where you bought it, like anywhere that sells it below $4.00. If you thought gas prices would come down you might postpone that trip to Denver or Miami until then…Oddly (very sarcastic here) in the place where you burn a bunch of stuff, your home, you do not have this basic information. You can change that according to the the New York Times..

“Ten times last year, Judi Kinch, a geologist, got e-mail messages telling her that the next afternoon any electricity used at her Chicago apartment would be particularly expensive because hot, steamy weather was increasing demand for power.

Each time, she and her husband would turn down the air-conditioners — sometimes shutting one of them off — and let the dinner dishes sit in the washer until prices fell back late at night.

Most people are not aware that electricity prices fluctuate widely throughout the day, let alone exactly how much they pay at the moment they flip a switch.”

You can change all of that by purchasing a digital meter for your house. They cost $100-200 a meter with memory and a wifi card and the local utility company should install it for free. Now I know the energy conservation purist out there will scream that the utility companies should do this and some are, like PGE. But why wait and you can scare the living beejeezus out of your utility company at the same time. They may not even have time of day rates yet and they probably will think that a future that was far off is here today.

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