Have utility costs ever gotten you downright upset, depressed or simply mad?
You are not alone, the truth is we often seem to take for granted what we are consuming, when we are consuming it. However part of our #firstworldblessings. includes the innovation and technology to monitor and track our consumption seamlessly and remotely.
Recently in Ontario, Enbridge Gas Distribution has applied to the Ontario Energy Board (OEB) for a 40% increase in what it charges consumers. You can imagine the “gulp of saliva” I swallowed when I read this caption on twitter, TV and printed newspapers.
Owing to our #firstworldproblems in North America, Winter 2013 has been wickedly long and dreadful with an inadequate supply of natural gas to sustain consumption levels in Ontario. As such, Enbridge has to buy additional supplies from the US. It gets better, the icing on the cake is if you have paid any attention to interest rates in the last 3- 6 months you’d notice our beloved Cdn dollar hasn’t been fairing too well. Hence buying gas across the border is expensive.
Given the approval or rejection of Enbridge’s request is outside of the control of all of us. I believe that within our control, which we may have neglected to pay attention to is our ability to see, find and modify our consumption behaviours.
Personally my reminder arrived in the mail via “The little book of Great Big Energy Savings”. Yes some may call it an emergency bandaid approach to the forthcoming “ouch” the 40% increase will bring, others may say its an effort to educate the public so even when seasonal spikes occur we are not left out in the cold *literally , I hope you remember the Ice Storm of Dec 2013. If you don’t here is a flashback http://tinyurl.com/keldkqa . And my perspective is its a reminder, we can and continue winning by the daily choices we make.
Ok we’ve talked enough around what’s coming, now let’s quit playing “victim” and try these small wins
- Win #1 – LED light bulbs/Lighting : they are reliable, long lasting, good quality and are available in most big box stores. You can print or ask for available coupons for further savings on the purchase or reduced price.
- Win # 2 – Invest in Auto Turn On/Off or Power Bars with Timers/ Dimmers/ Motion Sensors both in the interior or exterior of your home
- Win # 3 – Program your thermostat to 20°C when you are home and 17°C when you are away or sleeping.
- Win # 4 – Are all appliances plugged in all the time? Similar to how its unhealthy for human beings to be plugged in 24/7 , its a waste of energy and phantom consumption to leave appliances plugged in when not in use.