smart meter bills, bills, bills.

time of use billing.
for our household it started on may 1st according to the bill we received yesterday, although we never got any formal letter or notice informing us of the start date. there is much confusion among the residents of my community as to when the billing for water and electricity will switch to time of use. the local hydro company has been giving mis-information to residents and there has been nothing on their website about the may 1st start date. strange, eh? some friends of mine were told june, others july, and when i checked their website on tuesday (31 may, 2011) it said people would be notified.
i guess our letter got lost in the mail.

so, now what?

i’ll have to revise my laundry routine and figure out how many loads i can get done in an evening after peak times. some people wash their laundry in the evening and then hang it up in the morning, which i think is what i’ll end up doing. but, evenings are when the kiddo’s bathe, the adults shower and the dishwasher runs, so our hot water use is maxed. it’ll be interesting to see what our bills will look like in the future. in preparation for the billing switch i’ve already started unplugging small appliances that are not in use and i walk around turning off lights. these new habits, i think, bug dear hubs, but he knows better not to say anything. i also hardly ever use our clothing dryer; we have a great clothesline in the basement and one in the backyard plus two racks. now that the weather is hot and sunny, i can start using the clothesline outside more regularly. which is really lucky considering that this will help lower our electrical bills at the end of the day. the idea of cheaper bills this month is actually a great comfort. perhaps i should start looking at using a different energy provider though, as this will surely help me save money on my energy bills. perhaps i could use someone like this Chariot Energy company… i should probably spend an afternoon thinking about this first though.

stuff i found in pockets; front loader; stuff i found in pockets wet with detergent, oops!; the detergent i use; deets of my AMAZING machine!

i feel a bit targeted by this new billing method, as i am an at home mama. that means that, while most people’s homes are quite dormant with electricity use, ours is at its highest. whether it’s to clean, cook, brew coffee, or watch a DVD, peak times are when we use the most electricity at home. but, i don’t think at home parents are the only ones who are really going to feel the ramifications of this. what about the elderly who live at home, or people with disabilities or the unemployed, what about big and small businesses whose electricity usage is probably the equivalent of 4 “always-on” households, do they get different Business Electricity offers? on an environmental level i get the whole concept, but my laundry isn’t really the one depleting our natural resources; it’s the INDUSTRY out there. all the factories, offices and stores have their A/C’s cranked, computers humming and other equipment or machinery sucking all the power from the grid.

i also think having the non-peak time so late into the evening, it encourages people to use their dryers, instead of hanging up laundry, which is the whole point of this, right? the environment, conservation, mindfulness?

i am already behind in my laundry and the thought of going into the basement right now to sort colours, delicates, diapers and what have you, kind of makes me want to stab my eyeballs!
wish me luck!

xo, mama lola
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