Be the Change #36 – Green Energy for the Miser

I am what is politely called “careful with money.”  I live by the old Depression-era maxim “Use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without.”  I love keeping our cost of living down.  So, even though I am very concerned about climate change, and I could easily afford to put my money where my mouth is, we still drive gasoline-powered cars and I kept postponing signing up for the green energy provider.  I kept telling myself I wanted to research it, and understand how much our bill would go up.  But I never did anything about it until a couple of Sundays ago. 

Al and I are members of the Phipps.  We never miss a flower show and, being who I am, I ran the numbers and realized that we would spend less on an annual membership than we were spending on individual flower show admissions.  During our visit to the fall flower show a couple of weeks ago, they were running a promotion with Green Mountain Energy: 6-month membership extension for anyone who signed up for Green Mountain.  We talked to the young man at the Green Mountain table, and I started to say (again), “We’ll think about it.”  Then, I had a moment of honesty with myself.  I’d been thinking about it for years.  We can afford a higher electric bill.  What more is there to think about?  And then, of course, there’s the 6-month membership extension.  That $45 appeal to my thrifty little heart finally sold me.  We signed up for the 100% wind plan. 

Then I went home and ran the numbers.

We just reduced our carbon footprint by 20,000 pounds per year.

And here’s the joke on me:  By not doing that research that I always promised myself I would do, I was throwing money away.  Turns out Duquesne Light had us signed up with a high-cost carbon-based fuel provider.  By switching to wind, we’ll SAVE about $17 a month!

The moral of the story is this:  Don’t put off looking into green energy.  It could end up saving you money.  And even if the dollars don’t work out for you the way they did for us, you’ll have the satisfaction of knowing that you’re helping to save the planet. 

One thought on “Be the Change #36 – Green Energy for the Miser

  1. vincentojohnson

    Hi Kathy:

    What a great lesson! Thanks for sharing!

    If only President Trump would take climate change seriously. I fear that the decisions being made in D.C. will unfortunately offset what U.S. citizens are doing in our own households…


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