Entries Tagged as 'Electricity'

Solar Panels

I just did a little exercise in trying to figure out if solar panels would be cost effective for me.

Using my latitude and longitude; NREL and NASA data; along with the ratings from a couple of the manufacturers of the most cost effective panels currently produced it appears that for about $750 I can produce enough electricity to run two [small] compact florescent lights — or a little less than $30 in electricity per year (at today’s rate).

So considering the energy and tax savings the panel couldn’t pay for itself in ten years (and that’s just the panel, that doesn’t include the batteries, inverter, installation, etc).  Plus, I suspect it’s unlikely that a solar panel would last ten years here.

I’d say that solar panels have to increase in cost/performance by a factor of roughly 2x before they’d be feasible here (and we get quite a bit of sun).

I’m always on the lookout for ways to be a little more “green”; but I also believe that any solution needs to be sustainable; and I’m sure if I consider the impact of the production of the panels into this “equation” I’m going to find [here] that solar panels really aren’t that “green”.

I’ll have to keep looking for other options that might be more effective.

Originally posted 2009-08-13 01:00:36.

Home Energy Report

Yesterday I got my “Home Energy Report” from Gulf Power… I cam in #6 out of 100…

Sixth!!! Hell, I don’t like second place… of course no one told me this was a competition.

The report’s fairly interesting… I used 967KWh, my “efficient” neighbors used 1,354, and “all” neighbors used 1,740… so I use 29% less energy than my “efficient” neighbors… which is one of the reasons why their “Energy Select” doesn’t make sense to me.

Of course another thing that doesn’t make sense to me is why I need another account with Gulf Power to view this information online — seems like it should have just been “connected” with my bill pay account, or at least I should be able to have a “master” account that I can select what services I want.