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    Energy Useage and Goals. AKA Justin looks at his energy consumption!

    I have spent the past couple of days of compiling my families energy usage since moving to College Station, TX almost a year ago. I decided to do this because if I am going to talk about being eco-friendly and saving on electricity, I need to start setting goals.

    Our Apartment!Laura and I live in an apartment, which makes our options fewer than owning a house (obviously we can't change out Windows, redo insulation, weather strip, and change our washer and dryer). Yet, the options we do have, are cheaper and probably can be done quicker and we should be able to see a faster impact. We have yet lived here for a whole July, and I haven't seen the whole June energy report yet (our current energy usage is through 325 days), but I do think that I can start making estimates and still setting goals of month by month. My over all goal is to cut back our energy by 15% and our gas by 10% the first year. I will start the year at the end of July for measure, but will start looking for energy saving practices during the month of July, so in reality, that last July of next year should be the hardest month to save on, unless I have come up with some great ways through the previous six months. 

    So far this year we have used 3922 KW/h for an average of 12.06 KW/h a day (I stated earlies this was through 325 days). Which means by the end of July next year I will want our average to be down to 10.251 KW/h a day for a total use of 3741.615 KW/h for the year. That is already less energy used than we've used in 325 days this year. I will start taking the proper steps to correct this immediately and let ya know what I am doing. Something that might surprise you that I am not going to do immediately. Like, switch all my light bulbs to CFLs. The reason for this is the following. I am going to wait for the light bulbs that are non-CFL to burn out before replacing them with CFL lights. The energy cost to make a CFL light outweighs using a normal light to the very end. Yet, as soon as the lights go out, a CFL will go in!

    The next thing I will conquer is my gas bill. I only have the stove, heater, and hot water heater hooked up to the gas line. This process will be more about conservation and use more than changing out products (even though I have a nifty piece about the new GE Water Heater coming out in a few days, thanks to a tip from Kevin Fretz, who was tipped by Jay). My current gas usage over 10 months has been 18.8 MCF (MCF for 1,000 cubic feet, M denotes mil, thousand). That is an average of 1.88 per month. My goal is a 10% reduction for 1.692 MCF per month or 20.304 MCFs per year. 

    I will keep everyone updated on my progress, and am open to any suggestions you might have no or along the way. Any little help I can get, I think I will need.


    ---Justin J. Stewart

    P.S. An aditional bonus will be the money we save by doing this! Per average this past year would have cost us 595.04 in energy cost alone (not counting other fees, but just pure KW/Hs). If I meet my goal it should cost me 505.04 dollars. That's one hundred dollars for small changes that I can probably make for free, plus it should in tern lower taxes and what not. For my gas is currently would cost me $164.36 just for delivery of the gas (no taxes and other fees). After it should cost me $147.92. That is only almost twenty dollars, but if I exceed my goals by just being aware for free, it could save me more, and honestly in today's economy every penny helps!


    **edit 7-2-10: The reason we are not tracking water consumption is because, unfortunately we have no date on water consumption. Our complex owners take care of our water through the city of College Station. When we get our utilities bill that would normally also include water, it says our useage is 0.0. As great as that would be from a conservation stand point, I just don't think it's true...**