Recommend
6 
 Thumb up
 Hide
26 Posts
1 , 2  Next »   | 

BoardGameGeek» Forums » Everything Else » Religion, Sex, and Politics

Subject: Why solar doesn't make sense... rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: interesting(prac) [+] [View All]
Stephen Mcleod
United States
houston
Texas
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
I've been enamored with solar power for many years.

If solar costs $20,000 to install- including all electrical work and assuming that the batteries and inverters last forever instead of only 7 years.

At $1000 per year electrical bill, it would take 20 years to pay this off.

Meanwhile,
I could take $20k, put it into tax-free munies, get 3% all day long. If I was willing to commit to a 20 year bond (expiri 2032) which I'm essentially doing with my solar power: over 5% (about 5.3% from dozens of locations).

$20k at 3%: $600 per year. 20 years * 400 = 8000. At 20 years, I have $12000 left. At 3%, I have the option to adjust for inflation in 2019-2021.

$20k at 5%: $1000 per year. At 20 years, I have $20k left. Any rate over 5%, I have more than $20k.

---

Meanwhile... I buy one LED in a setting that I use a lot.
At $20 per bulb, it pays for itself in the following periods at 10.5 cents per kilowatt hour.

1 hour per day: under 6 years. (lasts 60 years!)
3 hours a day : Under 2 years. (lasts 20 years)
6 hours a day: Under 1 year. (lasts 10 years)
12 hours a day: Under 6 months. (lasts 5 years)


Here is a helpful chart.

2900k - a bit redder than incandescent
3000k - "just right". can't be distinguished from incandescent.
5000k - like daylight- white.

Other temperatures usually look a bit blue. And lights react with your wall color.

Another helpful chart.

800 lumens - like a 60 watt bulb.
850 lumens - like a 65 watt bulb. A very nice light level for people over 40 as our eyes become less sensitive to light.

1050 lumens - like a 75 watt bulb.

---

Similar numbers for CFL tho I hate the quality of light and their lumen output drops over time until they are dismal even tho technically still within their lifespan since they haven't completely stopped functioning.
Move them to closets perhaps.

---

Quality low watt lightbulbs are a much better investment than solar power.
Quality municipal bonds are a much better investment than solar power.

Solar still needs to drop by half (at least).





8 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
United States
Boise
Idaho
flag msg tools
mbmbmb
Why not just quadruple the taxes on everybody making enough money to buy $20 light bulbs and invest in the bond market. Then the government can take the money you would have just spent selfishly on your own needs and lend it out at close to zero percent interest to any "green energy renewable solar wind" company that passes a rigorous loan approval process which includes bundling campaign contributions for the current administration.

We'd be kicking Chinese ass in no time. I'm pretty sure of it.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
steven slater
England
County of Essex
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
I am not sure that the point of solor power is investment.
8 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
United States
Boise
Idaho
flag msg tools
mbmbmb
slatersteven wrote:
I am not sure that the point of solor power is investment.


Survival is about managing resources. Period. Whether it's a lone human in the wilds or a large society - being a good manager of resources is at the core of longevity. Mac's point was clear - it makes no sense to waste his resources on something that has a net effect of reducing his survival potential. Right?

This is where the much hated "rich" people come in. People and groups who have an abundance of resources can (and do) fund the future. But not because they just love Gaea, or for the love of all peoples everywhere, but because that's the survival instinct kicking in. It's what we do, it's in our DNA as much as fattening up and hibernating is in the DNA of bears.

Here's an excellent example of how one of our fattest bears is helping fund your personal low-impact, green energy future while simultaneously being attacked by the "green" activists for doing so:

Cute Energy

The hypocrisy among the "green" subculture is so laughable and so obviously based on outdated Walden Pond politick that even the most liberal politicians understand the stupidity of what they demand. Thanks to rich people like Gates and his brethren we will end up with clean, renewable, economic energy for all. Probably within the next 50 years.

Any who doubt whether being rich can be humanitarian and profit-centered at the same time can happen need look no further than Elon Musk's Dragon, which just flew into orbit and docked with the space station.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
steven slater
England
County of Essex
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
DWTripp wrote:
slatersteven wrote:
I am not sure that the point of solor power is investment.


Survival is about managing resources. Period. Whether it's a lone human in the wilds or a large society - being a good manager of resources is at the core of longevity. Mac's point was clear - it makes no sense to waste his resources on something that has a net effect of reducing his survival potential. Right?

This is where the much hated "rich" people come in. People and groups who have an abundance of resources can (and do) fund the future. But not because they just love Gaea, or for the love of all peoples everywhere, but because that's the survival instinct kicking in. It's what we do, it's in our DNA as much as fattening up and hibernating is in the DNA of bears.

Here's an excellent example of how one of our fattest bears is helping fund your personal low-impact, green energy future while simultaneously being attacked by the "green" activists for doing so:

Cute Energy

The hypocrisy among the "green" subculture is so laughable and so obviously based on outdated Walden Pond politick that even the most liberal politicians understand the stupidity of what they demand. Thanks to rich people like Gates and his brethren we will end up with clean, renewable, economic energy for all. Probably within the next 50 years.

Any who doubt whether being rich can be humanitarian and profit-centered at the same time can happen need look no further than Elon Musk's Dragon, which just flew into orbit and docked with the space station.


There is nothing green about nuclear energy, its just not as dirty as coal or oil.

I don't dispute that when there is a profit insentive private finace can (and will) do 'humanitiarian' projects. I do dispute that this is always for the good, after all they will control the technology, and thus it's availiblity.

As to the OP, I am not sure that it reduces his survival potential it just does not produce returns as quickly as something else.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Stephen Mcleod
United States
houston
Texas
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
My point is that CFL and LED bulbs are a good investment.
Do them first.

My point is that currently solar is a terrible investment unless most of your bill is A/C. And I live in Texas and even with 4 months a year of blistering heat-- solar isn't even close to break even vs parking your money in bonds.

There is also a VERY interesting recursive property to solar power.

Say we have this market
30% power from oil
30% power from coal
30% power from natural gas
10% power from other sources (hydro mostly)

Now... drop 20% solar into that mix as Germany has.

Suddenly 6% less demand for oil, coal, natural gas, and 2% less demand for power from other sources.

So the price for oil, coal, natural gas, and other sources... drops.

It's a natural feedback loop.
But now the 20% you put into solar doesn't make as much sense.

---

Finally by going to LED's, I'm greatly reducing my ecological footprint on the planet. Power usage down by over 30% in one year. Bulbs will last a decade-- less resources used, less landfill used, less shipping to move the bulbs around. And NO mercury.

---

And to tripp. No most of the rich do not fund green. They fund the most profitable. If that means a china that creates so much pollution that it pollutes most of the western USA plus people have to wear air filters in china, and millions of chinese are dying years (decades?) younger than they would otherwise, and millions of chinese are working under slave labor conditions 12 hours a day, and millions of US jobs were exported, and if it horribly pollutes china's water... then that's what the rich will do.. for an extra 1% return on their investments.

Heck, one of the republicans running for congress is helping export US technology to chinese companies and works for chinese companies. I do not want that "republican" in our congress.

There have been repeated studies showing that the rich mostly lose all empathy for normal people as they past a few million dollars.

Don't think the vast majority the rich have your interest at heart for one second with a very few exceptions.
5 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Neil Carr
United States
Barre
Vermont
flag msg tools
designer
mbmbmbmbmb
I've been exploring solar. The price is coming down over time, but it's still a bit too expensive to make back your money quick enough unless you do plan on living at your current location for a long time. I've watched over the last decade the prices coming down from $30k down to the $12k threshold. So it's getting better.

One thing that also helps it become cheaper is to not get an off-grid setup. You save on the cost of batteries, which are going to fail eventually anyway. Instead you just pump into the grid and you're electricity costs are offset.

The estimate I had on my house was around $12K, although I think this was still underpowered to basically offset all of my electrical needs.

One challenge is that I'm seeing that as time goes on more electricity being needed, so I'd want a system that can handle greater consumption that is compensated by solar. I suspect the price is going to have to drop in half before that will be possible. One option might be to get some panels and then expand as the greater consumption is needed. A key element is that I'd want the solar panels to pay for themselves within five or six years.

But overall where I'm coming from is the expectation that energy prices will be increasing over time and so... say 15 years out I'd like solar to act as a financial "shock absorber." My life is built around the information economy and so not having to pause to consider if I should be using electronics due to the energy costs is an element I'd like to continue to be able to do over the coming decades.

It does go without saying (from my viewpoint) that whatever energy efficiencies you can invest in should also be done. That's a no brainier. The important thing is that in 20 years my whole living environment should be bathed in holograms (or whatever it ends up being), the air conditioner should be running in the summer when needed, the dehumidifier should be running in the wet months, the air filtration should be running during the pollen season, the electric car should have a full charge, and so on without any thought to my finances.

3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
James Webb Space Telescope in 2018!
United States
Utah
flag msg tools
mb
I'm really looking forward to this book, which comes out in a week:

Green Illusions: The Dirty Secrets of Clean Energy and the Future of Environmentalism,
by Ozzie Zehner
http://www.amazon.com/Green-Illusions-Secrets-Environmentali...

Seems to be saying, "Environmentalism? You're doing it wrong."
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
フィル
Australia
Ashfield
NSW
flag msg tools
designer
Pushing a lesbian old growth union-approved agenda since '94.
mbmbmbmbmb
As you say, switching lightbulbs is a much bigger saving / environmental help than installing rooftop solar. But, rooftop solar is great and in Australia costs the same as fossil fuel electricity. If you can afford it, why not do both?
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
M C
Canada
Lethbridge
Alberta
flag msg tools
Game group needed...
mbmbmbmbmb

What are some quality LED brands?

I bought a three pack from Costco. Two of the three died in far less time than the lifespan of an incandescent bulb - months in fact, so I'm pretty unimpressed with my super expensive bulbs.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Lynette
United States
Richland
Washington
flag msg tools
Yep, I am a girl Scientist. Come for the breasts; Stay for the brains!
badge
For as long as I shall live I will testify to love; I'll be a witness in the silences when words are not enough.
mbmbmbmbmb


Solar Water heaters make a HUGE amount of financial sense though. Check them out. And heating water is one of the big regular electrical costs to a home.

4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Welcome Rolling Stones
Latvia
Bullshit
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb

We rarely recommend solar panels as part of the LEED package for Green Buildings. The numbers don't work. Sad to say, geothermal is in the same boat, providing you have to install underground piping.

Both of these technologies can work given the right set of circumstances.

Most of my buildings are designed for Central Ohio, so we generally focus on good day lighting strategies, energy efficient fixtures, and power conservation via occupancy sensors.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
lotus dweller
Australia
Melbourne
Victoria
flag msg tools
Meerkat wrote:


Solar Water heaters make a HUGE amount of financial sense though. Check them out. And heating water is one of the big regular electrical costs to a home.

:)
And make the bloody installer show you the efficiency for the installed angle for near the bloody middle of winter. Them saying "It makes only 6% difference over a year" will not help the temperature of the water in mid-winter.

And if you are building look at solar water heating and hot water in-slab house heating.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Christopher Bird
Canada
Toronto
Ontario
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Most advocates of solar energy policy abandoned the "every home has solar panels" strategy in the 1990s when it was clear that, even with expected efficiency gains over time in the technology (and those projections have been beaten), the numbers didn't work.

Serious solar energy plans at this point are based around large installations of panels and solar-mirror steam engine turbines, both of which are far more efficient than individual mini-installations.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
フィル
Australia
Ashfield
NSW
flag msg tools
designer
Pushing a lesbian old growth union-approved agenda since '94.
mbmbmbmbmb
I don't think the numbers are as dire as you say. See, for example: Solar energy cost hits par with coal fuel.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Stephen Mcleod
United States
houston
Texas
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Led bulbs.

If they are dying that fast, you might have dirty power.

So far none of my led's have died. They vary from 2 or 3 years old to new. I have one very old 200 lumen bulb on the porch- it was $35 new-- and is about 7 years old. It's on 24x7, pulling 1.7 watts.

I have phillips 800lumens and 1050 lumens, ge, eco??? (new brand at home depot) 900 lumens, G7's (sadly discontinued but still on ebay- but some of them buzz) 900 lumens- perfect 3000k light-good in "can lamp" fixtures.

Probably a dozen cfl's that I'm slowly rotating out.

I'm tending towards warm bulbs. Very few cool bulbs left.

I'm occasionally getting them at $10 as the next generation of bulbs comes out. Once they regularly hit $10, you'll see them in walmarts ad of course the payback period will be much shorter than above.


 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Rusty McFisticuffs
United States
Arcata
California
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
maxo-texas wrote:
If solar costs $20,000 to install- including all electrical work and assuming that the batteries and inverters last forever instead of only 7 years.

At $1000 per year electrical bill, it would take 20 years to pay this off.

Meanwhile,
I could take $20k, put it into tax-free munies, get 3% all day long. If I was willing to commit to a 20 year bond (expiri 2032) which I'm essentially doing with my solar power: over 5% (about 5.3% from dozens of locations).

$20k at 3%: $600 per year. 20 years * 400 = 8000. At 20 years, I have $12000 left.

My numbers are a little different than yours.

We got a 3.5 kW system maybe 7 years ago. (Grid-tied, so no batteries.) At the time, it was about a $20,000 system; I think tax rebates etc. brought it down to about $12,000. (No idea what's happened with prices or incentives since then, and I think incentives vary by state anyway.) Even though we only get credit for energy produced during part of the year, we still pay about $0 per year.

If I had been earning 3% on that $12,000, then (if I'm using this compound interest calculator thing correctly) at the end of 12 years, I would still have $2-3000 in the bank (principal, plus interest, minus electric bills), so at that point I would have been better off banking it. But, around the 14-year mark, I pull ahead of where I would have been if I'd banked the money.

But, even if my math was wrong and I don't come out ahead until the 20-year mark, I like having a solar system. I like renewable energy. (I work in renewable energy.) And, sure, residential systems are less efficient than large installations requiring centralized control, but in general, I prefer distributed, decentralized systems. (My wife doesn't know this, but the real reason we buy a farm share is to stick it to the man.)
10 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Daniel Edwards
United Kingdom
London
Unspecified
flag msg tools
mightygodking wrote:
Most advocates of solar energy policy abandoned the "every home has solar panels" strategy in the 1990s when it was clear that, even with expected efficiency gains over time in the technology (and those projections have been beaten), the numbers didn't work.

Serious solar energy plans at this point are based around large installations of panels and solar-mirror steam engine turbines, both of which are far more efficient than individual mini-installations.


This and I've advised on some of the world's largest solar projects. Power generation at a household level has never been vaguely close to break even so I don't think thats a very practical test. We're still a long way away although technology is improving all the time and module costs are steadily dropping (Chinese interference in the world wide market is so extensive though thats it hard to map). Polysilicon was a bottleneck for years although that is starting to change (again mostly due to the Chinese though).
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
James Webb Space Telescope in 2018!
United States
Utah
flag msg tools
mb
Here's a PDF of the first chapter of that new book I referenced earlier. It explains why solar power is a fairy tale, and sucks money away from more effective green solutions.

Solar will not solve our large scale energy needs. It will cost $1.4 quadillion dollars to install enough solar panels to power the planet, and they have to be replaced every twenty years. Manufacture of the panels produces toxic byproducts and releases large amounts of greenhouse gases. Spent panels in landfills are also toxic. Actual efficiency in the field is well below the optimal, including the significant problem of keeping them clean all the time. Costs are dropping but other costs such as maintenance, insurance, etc. will keep solar power expensive.

We have all been told since childhood that solar is the answer to clean, green energy. We have been told wrong. I'm as disappointed as anyone about this.

http://www.nebraskapress.unl.edu/supplements/excerpts/Spring...
PDF of first chapter from from
Green Illusions
The Dirty Secrets of Clean Energy and the Future of Environmentalism
Ozzie Zehner

(the PDF is a free download from the publisher's website, http://www.nebraskapress.unl.edu/product/Green-Illusions,675...)


From the book introduction:

"I find most people are interested in exploring genuine solutions to our energy problems; they're eager to latch on and advocate for one if given the opportunity.

"As it turns out, there are quite a few solutions that could use some latching on to. But they're not the ones you'll read about in glossy magazines or see on television news - they're far more intriguing, powerful, and rewarding than that."
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Stephen Mcleod
United States
houston
Texas
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
kuhrusty wrote:
maxo-texas wrote:
If solar costs $20,000 to install- including all electrical work and assuming that the batteries and inverters last forever instead of only 7 years.

At $1000 per year electrical bill, it would take 20 years to pay this off.

Meanwhile,
I could take $20k, put it into tax-free munies, get 3% all day long. If I was willing to commit to a 20 year bond (expiri 2032) which I'm essentially doing with my solar power: over 5% (about 5.3% from dozens of locations).

$20k at 3%: $600 per year. 20 years * 400 = 8000. At 20 years, I have $12000 left.

My numbers are a little different than yours.

We got a 3.5 kW system maybe 7 years ago. (Grid-tied, so no batteries.) At the time, it was about a $20,000 system; I think tax rebates etc. brought it down to about $12,000. (No idea what's happened with prices or incentives since then, and I think incentives vary by state anyway.) Even though we only get credit for energy produced during part of the year, we still pay about $0 per year.

If I had been earning 3% on that $12,000, then (if I'm using this compound interest calculator thing correctly) at the end of 12 years, I would still have $2-3000 in the bank (principal, plus interest, minus electric bills), so at that point I would have been better off banking it. But, around the 14-year mark, I pull ahead of where I would have been if I'd banked the money.

But, even if my math was wrong and I don't come out ahead until the 20-year mark, I like having a solar system. I like renewable energy. (I work in renewable energy.) And, sure, residential systems are less efficient than large installations requiring centralized control, but in general, I prefer distributed, decentralized systems. (My wife doesn't know this, but the real reason we buy a farm share is to stick it to the man.)


It's always great to have a hobby. Some people spend thousands (tens of thousands) of dollars fishing for fish which they then toss back in the water or making craft items or going on cruises.

And it's lovely to live in a state where other people pay 40% of the cost of your solar system. That brings it very close to break even and you fairly reliable power during most disasters.

On the flip side, if you have to move, you may not get back what you put in. We don't know how solar power systems affect the house price as they age.

I'm glad having a system makes you happier. That's the important thing.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Stephen Mcleod
United States
houston
Texas
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
tesuji wrote:
Here's a PDF of the first chapter of that new book I referenced earlier. It explains why solar power is a fairy tale, and sucks money away from more effective green solutions.

Solar will not solve our large scale energy needs. It will cost $1.4 quadillion dollars to install enough solar panels to power the planet, and they have to be replaced every twenty years. Manufacture of the panels produces toxic byproducts and releases large amounts of greenhouse gases. Spent panels in landfills are also toxic. Actual efficiency in the field is well below the optimal, including the significant problem of keeping them clean all the time. Costs are dropping but other costs such as maintenance, insurance, etc. will keep solar power expensive.

We have all been told since childhood that solar is the answer to clean, green energy. We have been told wrong. I'm as disappointed as anyone about this.

http://www.nebraskapress.unl.edu/supplements/excerpts/Spring...
PDF of first chapter from from
Green Illusions
The Dirty Secrets of Clean Energy and the Future of Environmentalism
Ozzie Zehner

(the PDF is a free download from the publisher's website, http://www.nebraskapress.unl.edu/product/Green-Illusions,675...)


From the book introduction:

"I find most people are interested in exploring genuine solutions to our energy problems; they're eager to latch on and advocate for one if given the opportunity.

"As it turns out, there are quite a few solutions that could use some latching on to. But they're not the ones you'll read about in glossy magazines or see on television news - they're far more intriguing, powerful, and rewarding than that."


That's odd because my impression is that after 20 years solar cells still return 90% of original power and frequently last 30 years. A lot depends on the quality of the weather proofing.

The benefit to the commons of *some* people having solar power is significant. If we reduce demand for coal, oil, and natural gas by 20%, then their prices will drop significantly. And right off the bat, we have 20% less pollutants.

But again.. LED/CFL lighting can do that too. It lowers my power consumption for a given fixture by 80%. I prefer LED because it's actually dimmable and the light is indistinguishable from incandescent these days. Plus it's "instant on" at full intensity. My CFLs all "instant on" at less than full intensity and then slowly go to max lumens over the next minute.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Daniel Edwards
United Kingdom
London
Unspecified
flag msg tools
maxo-texas wrote:
tesuji wrote:
Here's a PDF of the first chapter of that new book I referenced earlier. It explains why solar power is a fairy tale, and sucks money away from more effective green solutions.

Solar will not solve our large scale energy needs. It will cost $1.4 quadillion dollars to install enough solar panels to power the planet, and they have to be replaced every twenty years. Manufacture of the panels produces toxic byproducts and releases large amounts of greenhouse gases. Spent panels in landfills are also toxic. Actual efficiency in the field is well below the optimal, including the significant problem of keeping them clean all the time. Costs are dropping but other costs such as maintenance, insurance, etc. will keep solar power expensive.

We have all been told since childhood that solar is the answer to clean, green energy. We have been told wrong. I'm as disappointed as anyone about this.

http://www.nebraskapress.unl.edu/supplements/excerpts/Spring...
PDF of first chapter from from
Green Illusions
The Dirty Secrets of Clean Energy and the Future of Environmentalism
Ozzie Zehner

(the PDF is a free download from the publisher's website, http://www.nebraskapress.unl.edu/product/Green-Illusions,675...)


From the book introduction:

"I find most people are interested in exploring genuine solutions to our energy problems; they're eager to latch on and advocate for one if given the opportunity.

"As it turns out, there are quite a few solutions that could use some latching on to. But they're not the ones you'll read about in glossy magazines or see on television news - they're far more intriguing, powerful, and rewarding than that."


That's odd because my impression is that after 20 years solar cells still return 90% of original power and frequently last 30 years. A lot depends on the quality of the weather proofing.

The benefit to the commons of *some* people having solar power is significant. If we reduce demand for coal, oil, and natural gas by 20%, then their prices will drop significantly. And right off the bat, we have 20% less pollutants.

But again.. LED/CFL lighting can do that too. It lowers my power consumption for a given fixture by 80%. I prefer LED because it's actually dimmable and the light is indistinguishable from incandescent these days. Plus it's "instant on" at full intensity. My CFLs all "instant on" at less than full intensity and then slowly go to max lumens over the next minute.


The typical warranty as at today is 25 years, so thats the typical allowance. Solar plants themselves won't last much longer than that without re-fit.

I'll have a read of the pdf but the start is not inspiring a lot of confidence.

I don't see even the most fervant supporter saying solar will solve our large scale energy needs. Any figure to install world wide solar panels is so pulled out of the ass, evaluating it is pointless.

All power plants involve maintenance and insurance costs and for the capex solar isn't particularly expensive to operate. You need to keep the panels clean but thats just part of regular maintenance. Some projects are even incorporating robots to do this which is awesome.

As the supply of fossil fuels decreases and the technology improves the base figures get closer and closer to even. Ignoring the externalities completely and we probably get there within the decade. I'd say the Chinese will look pretty smart for taking the long term approach at that point.

3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Guidance is internal.
United States
Cleveland Heights
Ohio
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
As some have alluded to and I wanted to point out as the Subject of this thread is misleading, if savings is your goal, Solar currently does not add up. If reducing burning carbon sources for energy is your goal, then Solar is part of a complete breakfast (including CFL/LED, energy efficiency in general) that can help get closer to that goal. You may pay more, but you are doing less damage.

If we concentrate too hard on saving money, we will end up in a Wal-Mart society. Sometimes you just have to pay more to get better quality with less negative consequences. Obviously, we don't have to play the "cost is no object" game, but if a benefit isn't "too" expensive compared to the alternative it should be realistically evaluated.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Paul DeStefano
United States
Long Island
New York
flag msg tools
designer
It's a Zendrum. www.zendrum.com
mbmbmbmbmb
Meerkat wrote:


Solar Water heaters make a HUGE amount of financial sense though. Check them out. And heating water is one of the big regular electrical costs to a home.



Checked it out.

Nope.

$6000+ for a solar water heater. 13 years to the break even point.

You can check nifty savings calculator here:

http://www.rheem.com/products/solar_water_heating/
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Guidance is internal.
United States
Cleveland Heights
Ohio
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Geosphere wrote:
Meerkat wrote:


Solar Water heaters make a HUGE amount of financial sense though. Check them out. And heating water is one of the big regular electrical costs to a home.



Checked it out.

Nope.

$6000+ for a solar water heater. 13 years to the break even point.

You can check nifty savings calculator here:

http://www.rheem.com/products/solar_water_heating/


The big difference here is natural gas vs electricity. Using the calculator for natural gas at current prices I wouldn't pay one off by 15 years (calculator cut off point), but if it were to replace an electric unit (which I don't have) it would pay for itself in 8 years and I would be saving $6000 by year 15. So it really depends on energy cost over the next decade or so. if electricity and/or natural gas increase in price, then it becomes even more economical. I can't see electricity dropping too much and natural gas is already dirt cheap and can only go up so I think there is room to predict pretty good savings while eliminating a lot of carbon burning.

In fact, I just reran the numbers with just a 10% increase in Gas prices and I pay off replacement for my natural gas water heater in 12 years and start making a profit. The same thing for direct electric replacement with a 10% increase means I pay it off in 6 years.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
1 , 2  Next »   | 
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.