Because I see the world in which we live as a trust from the Creator God, I have a passion for taking care of it by living in a way that is sustainable. Some Ontario residents have become upset at the introduction of SMART meters, which track household energy use by time of day and charge a higher rate for “peak” times. Their hydro bills have gone up unless they have taken some steps to shift their energy use patterns.
My family has been trying to reduce our energy use in a number of ways even before the time of use pricing came into effect. Our hydro bill comes every 60 days, and on average it costs us less than $2 per day to power our lights and appliances, even less in the summer months.
Two of the largest energy users in most homes are the clothes dryer and the hot water heater. We have dealt with the clothes dryer by not having one at all. There is room in our small backyard for an umbrella-style clothesline, and we have lines suspended from the ceiling of our laundry room when the furnace runs in the winter anyways. Yes, the odd time we are stuck with a garment someone NEEDS right away. Did you know a hair dryer has more than one use? Still, planning ahead usually works fine.
We have an electric water heater that turns itself on throughout the day to maintain the water temperature even if it is not being used. We discovered that in Australia, water heaters are allowed to run only at night and are automatically turned off during the daytime. We are manually turning off the breaker weekdays at 7 am and on again after 7 pm. By taking five-minute showers and washing dishes after 7 pm, we have yet to run out of hot water.