Riot for Austerity – Month 34

We’re back. On Sunday, Irene knocked down a couple of trees on our block, which mostly missed people, houses and cars, but got hung up on the electricity cables. Power was restored yesterday, after four days. More on that, later. First:

This is the Riot for the month of August 2011. August saw ebbs and flows of people at our house. Averaging them out, we were 4.9 people (roughly, 3.9 adults, 1 child). Throw me a bone and call it 5. Our first year’s averages were calculated here, our second year’s averages can be found here.

Sharon is getting the Riot up and running agai on Facebook. Edson fixed the calculator! My Wayland friend Andrea has started her own Riot and began, bravely, with electricity.

Gasoline.  Calculated per person.

11.09 gallons per person

26% of the US National Average

Electricity. We got our first bill after the installation of our solar, which was tuned on  on 9 August. It has been a sunny month, and the array is performing wonderfully – except when the grid is down and the whole thing shuts down, no matter how sunny the days after a hurricane.

Solar doesn’t get as high a “percentage discount” (as a green technology) as wind does, but there not being a new Riot percentage calculator yet, and to make it easier on my calculations, I’m counting solar and wind as the same, percentage-wise.

The calculator reckons per household (5 people), not per person.

312 KWH (our solar) and 154 KWH (NSTAR wind) =466 KWH total

13% of the US National Average

Heating Oil and Warm Water. This too is calculated for the entire household, not per person. It’s up from the last Riot because there were more of us using the hot water for showers, which is basically all our heating oil is used for these days.

9.35 7.15 gallons of oil

17% 11.6% of the US National Average

{UPDATE} 3 Jan 2012: The way I have been calculating our heating oil consumption is by reading off the furnace how many hours it ran, then multiplying it by .85 because that’s the amount of gallons of oil I *thought* it used. Now DH just told me that our furnace is more efficient than that and the correct number is .65. Hence the correction

Trash. After recycling and composting this usually comes down to mainly food wrappers.

10 lbs. pp per month

7% of the US National Average

Water. This is calculated per person.

504 gallons pp.

16% of the US National Average

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  1. I think you should subtract your solar from the total not include it.

    154-312= -158

    and you should get credit of those kwh toward your gas bill.

    Why doesn’t it work like that?

  2. Hi Andrea,
    solar (and wind) still count for a carbon (and consumer) footprint because resources did go into making the panels, turbines, and all the electrical cables, etc. So I shouldn’t deduct it (the 154 Kwh from NSTAR are what I “pay for” after the solar is already deducted). In the end I also want to keep keeping track of how much electricity I use, regardless of the source.
    I don’t have gas at my house, just oil :(

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