Post number 300: full of energy!
What to write about today? Well many of my Dutch blogging colleagues decided to have fun again with a flash-blog. A few weeks back they all did a blog about groceries. As for some reason these posts tend to hit all-time high pageviews, despite being absolutely boring as hell.
However, they did it with a twist! Fake receipts, sarcasm, poking fun, pretty much being everything but serious. It was a blast to read to be honest, some of the comments where absolutely hilarious, I laughed and chuckled a lot!
Today’s flash-blog is about Energy, water and….. Not sure if it’s going to be as much fun as the last time. But knowing some of them, it probably will. Anyhow, they are all Dutch blogs. Since most of you that read our blog are not Dutch, this ain’t helping you much.
Energy, water and….
I’m actually not going to fool around about our energy and water usages. Why not, because until today I actually didn’t know some of the numbers! Why not, because we already do our best to limit where possible and didn’t feel the need to check. That being said, we still can do better and since energy prices and taxes are going up, we need to get moving to keep costs in reign!
So what’s “normal” in this country (see also here)? For reference, we are a 3 person household. The house we live in was built around 1900-1910 and is semi detached. Based on these numbers we can expect the following:
- Approximately 1.800 cubic metres of gas
- Approximately 3.600 kWh of electricity
- Roughly 135 cubic metres of water
Cheesy Household Data
Going through the data, and correcting for partial years where required, I came up with this:
Electricity Use and Solar Panels
I had to correct 2016 numbers to reflect an equivalent yearly use. However, it’s coming up pretty high, which surprises me as I cannot figure out why. Still, we are using about half what a normal household would be using. That’s good! Obviously 2018 is a bit higher again, as I’m now home a lot. But this impact is not as big as I feared.
For the record, we don’t have a dryer. We do have an older fridge, two continuous mechanical ventilation units, dishwasher, kitchen tools, electric kettle, oven and a big old LCD tv. Most lightbulbs are replaced with low use versions.
Still, because of the solar panels that the previous owners installed, we have been net (clean) energy producers for the past few years. I want to make sure we keep it that way! We actually also invested into two small sustainable energy loans which were used to purchase another few solar panels (I believe about 8 or so, we already have 12 on the roof of our house).
I realize however that this also disrupts the energy supply and demand in the summer and results in inefficient use of coal/gas powered stations (resulting in higher carbon emissions). But what’s the alternative at this stage? And what type of storage would actually work? Still lot’s of things to find out to transition to cleaner energy.
Our water use is also about half that of the national average for our type of household. No, we don’t smell! That beings said, Miss CF is starting to like taking showers, so water consumption will go up a bit more I’m afraid. Got to keep working on this too, it’s easy to slack off and waste natural resources.
Pretty happy with the drop in gas use over the years. We added quite some insulation around the house, which is clearly visible. That being said, the average outside temperature was higher in 2018. Saved us some on the heating bill, you got to love global warming 😉 However, we are not done yet! There is still more to do, and we might even get it to around the 1.000-1.200m3 mark with some more modifications. Getting it further down would require massive renovations. Still, we are already below what the average household would be using, which means we are doing something right!
Gas will be getting increasingly more expensive in the coming years. This as “we” don’t want our province of Groningen to shake so much and to incentivise the use cleaner energy options. So focussing on insulation is only going to become more (financially) interesting in the future.
How are you doing with your energy and water usage? Already calculated potential savings by insulation your house better?
P.s. here is the result of the digital flash-blog