Mrs Green says no to the environment
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In a recent survey over on Reduce Footprints, we were asked “What’s your criteria for purchases?” and I smugly breezed past the ‘price’ choice.
But now I realise I could be wrong.
You see I love to be frugal too. I have some disposable income but I need to make careful purchases. And there’s nothing better to me that combining saving money with saving resources.
And this week’s “Change the World Wednesday” challenge has highlighted this very issue for us again.
Small Footprints is asking us to beat procrastination and take action. She writes “This week, consider that one, green-living practice which you haven’t quite gotten to and … just do it! Take that first step, and give it a try!”
What a great challenge and one to really keep you on your toes.
For the past two years I’ve started the year by writing a list of ‘green goals‘ I want to achieve.
But for some reason the 2014 list hasn’t been created.
So Mr Green and I had a chat about what we could do.
“We could buy an electric car” was Mr Green’s first idea with a smile across his face.
I’m guessing that was tongue in cheek as we don’t exactly have the finances for that hanging around.
But then I thought we could look into a hybrid. A friend of ours recommends the Honda Insight which is fulled by electric and petrol. He loves his.
I checked them out on eBay, but even these start at around £8000.
So that’s a no-go too.
So then I thought about our electricity supplier. One thing I would love to do is switch to a green supplier. I’m aware my electricity is fulled by goodness knows what. I’m guessing coal, oil or nuclear.
And here’s where I realise ‘putting my money where my mouth is’ doesn’t always ring completely true.
And thinking about it; I know why.
When I buy organic food I benefit from the taste and the health benefits. I prefer the taste (in most instances; I admit you can’t always tell), and my body certainly prefers the way I feel when not overloaded with toxins.
With solar panels we have instant reductions to our electricity bills and that lovely feeling of bit of self sufficiency – when you get a power cut we are unaffected.
With the energy efficient woodstove we get lashings of hot water and we use less wood; this has reduced stress from having to source and collect a few tonnes of wood each year.
But an electricity supplier? There are no instant gratification benefits if I’m honest. There’s no tangible pleasure to me
It’s just a utility bill I’d rather not have to pay at all, so up until this point I’ve been swayed by price.
I know! My sense of altruism and ‘doing the right thing’ just isn’t kicking in.
Then I figured I hadn’t actually checked the figures for a long time, so here goes…
I’m currently paying 10.86p/ kwh with the Co-operative. They are not a green supplier, but at least their ethics as a company makes me feel like I’m doing my bit. Kind of.
I found three green suppliers in the UK and checked out their prices:
Ecotricity 15.11p / kwh
Good energy 15.45p /kwh
Green Energy 16.45p /kwh
Sadly, when I crunched the numbers, it wasn’t a pretty sight:
Putting aside standard charges, say we use 12 kwhs per day.
With the Co-Op, this costs us £39.10 per month or £469.20 a year
With Ecotricity it would be £54.40 or £652.80 a year
Good Energy would cost £55.62 or £667.44 a year
Green Energy would cost £59.22 or £710.64 over a year
All these prices EXCLUDE VAT and daily standing charges.
Mr Green and I discussed whether we would be prepared to spend an extra £200 a year on electricity to support a green supplier and…
I’m afraid the answer is no.
So as to “that one, green-living practice which you haven’t quite gotten to” just yet; we still haven’t decided.
I’d love to hear your thoughts. Would you spend an extra £200 on electricity per year to support renewable energies?
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