Every single month you get your electricity bill.
You pay it angrily, knowing that you are sending more money down the drain. Worse still, every year the price of electricity goes up at random, leaving you with less money to spend on what matters -- your family.
What if I told you that you don't need to pay for your electricity bill? That you could make money off electricity rather than wasting it?
Modern day life is tough. Wedged between student debt, global warming and claims of social media addiction, you're not the only one feeling overwhelmed.
But what if you could just step away from all the madness and literally unplug yourself? 'Off the grid' used to mean you were independent of the municipal grid but today the term has grown synonymous with a sustainable lifestyle.
Do you fantasize about a world without plastic or electricity bills? Getting started with the 'new renewable you' is a daunting task. Between YouTube stars with five years’ worth of trash in one jar and DIY superstars living off the grid, it feels impossible.
What if the problem is not with you but rather our economy?
One argument you may have heard against renewables is that it is intermittent. In other words, wind turbines and solar panels only produce electricity in suitable conditions.
But if you want to win an argument you can point out a solution is at hand. Intermittencycan be solved adoption of large scale electricity battery storage. This can supply electricity to the grid when needed.
You are late for work. Standing in line at a supermarket, you glare at the slow shop assistant while inching your way to the front of the queue.
After what feels like an hour, you finally buy what you came for. It's a vitamin boosting concoction with enough caffeine to get you buzzing. It's the big meeting day and you need all the energy you can get.
At the office, you neaten your clothes and get your notes ready - it's time. Downing the last bit of your drink, you drop it neatly into the recycling bin. Time to crush that meeting.
Wait.. hold on... you dropped your empty bottle into the recycling bin?
Not only are you a super busy career worker, but you have time to be kind to the planet too? Your whole office deserves an award just for having a recycling bin in the first place. All this good karma is going to be great for you, the business AND the environment.
But before getting too happy, let’s see what happens to that bottle you just threw away.
Solar panels are the golden child of renewable energy source. They continue to produce electricity in almost all weather conditions. Interestingly, solar panels work even better in cold environments. When we think of energy from the sun, we automatically imagine the warmth we feel and assume that it's all about heat. But solar energy is more like photosynthesis. It's about the light, not the heat. Like a computer, the panels operate better if they are colder. Cold and sunny climates are the perfect location for solar panels.
Imagine if you were able to fuel up your car at one petrol station and sell it back for more money when the same station was getting low on fuel. This is what could result from Vehicle to Grid technology (V2G). V2G describes a system where electric vehicles can sell power back to the grid. In theory it means that if you power your car with solar power, you could end up being paid to drive it.
Wind is the world's fastest growing renewable power source. With businesses around the globe competing to help countries meet their energy goals, wind turbine technology has been progressing at a hasty rate. The annual growth rate of wind power capacity has averaged at 25% in the last 5 years. Running out of viable land, coastal areas are looking to the world's oceans to continue growing their wind capacity.
Visions of the future are often filled with optimistic predictions of unlimited space travel, hover boards, and more spare time. However, in terms of energy, an exciting future could almost be with us. And it will happen because it is driven by necessity not wishful thinking. The need to lower carbon emissions is changing the way we use energy. We are taking more control over how we use electricity, which is helping lower emissions. And it may even save us money. Renewable energy, like wind and solar PV, and electricity storage, is at the heart of it.
Let's be honest, we all like the idea of renewable energy. No guilt and no global warming sound like a fantastic combo. The world's leaders are slowly coming around and realizing the importance of going green. Getting the world to run on 100% renewable energy sounds like a dream come true. But, are renewable energy sources viable on a large scale? Research says we can get there by 2050 without going bankrupt and it might even be profitable.
In order to save money on your electric bill: Turn Down your Heating by 5 degrees Fahrenheit. 47% of the energy used in homes is for Heating and Water. Each 5 degrees increase in temperature produces a 7% to 12% increase in Energy Consumption.
When renewable energy is a priority, many owners also have an interest in reducing their homes' energy consumption. Both plummeting and soaring seasonal temperatures can cause a home and a budget to bleed energy year after year. Where in some cases home upgrades that are specifically designed to limit energy use, improving home insulation can be another helpful move. Understanding how insulation works and how to use it properly can curb home energy consumption.