Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Couldn't it be both?

Something that really bugs me is it has to be 'either or' these days, apparently. People want to poke fun at trying to live more sustainably 'what, you going to turn Amish on us are you hahahaha'... well no, but I'm not going to be the 'Consumer Family' either. There is a middle ground, or even not in the middle but an option somewhere in between for us. (Have to say there's actually a lot about the Amish lifestyle that has merit, to me, but that's another post entirely) It doesn't have to be all or nothing.

So then I had another thought as I was dreaming/net browsing re properties for sale, land, bush... what 'our block' would ideally look like. So no we wouldn't be living 'Amish' (sorry, that's not the right term) but neither over the top. So we would have say, a laptop and net access, but we needn't power those through carbon-based power. We might have water coming out of a tap but it could come from our own collected water. We'd have a loo, but it might be a waterless one. You can live comfortably AND sustainably without entirely retreating from the 'modern' world if you don't want to. Certainly I prefer BPay over standing in line at the PO (ok I might have less bills to pay living almost-sustainably but it's a good way to communicate and find new ideas and information as well).

SO then I got to thinking (yeh, I'm getting there) about a conversation with someone about off-grid stand-alone power vs grid-connect solar. Pros and cons of each (cost, eco benefit for a start) etc But then I thought why does it have to be one or the other? If the utitlities are there to the boundary (and assuming the big one of course, that COST makes it possible) then why not do both? Have a stand-alone system that the household uses, but have a grid connect system that you don't use - you only feed back into - and get credit$ for. Let your sustainability earn you money. Now it was probably rather short sighted thinking because how, once your credit on your power bill gets into the hundreds lol will you 'get that money'. I guess they could send you a cheque... right? Anyhoo. So pondering out loud. Reiterating that it's not 'Amish' or 'high tech' as the only options. It's about balance. That's what sustainability is ALL about, for me - an achieved balance.


Kellie said...

Thanks for your comment on my closet cleaning post! I adore this idea of balance and avoiding the "one or the other" mindset.

Deanne said...

I personally love the idea! I believe that there are a few people in my city who generate a surplus of energy that feeds into the grid and the electric company does pay them their credited amount.

Marianne said...

My biggest frustration is that it has to cost so much to save money and do the right thing for the enviroment.
I am hoping that at some point in my life I will be able to do this and actually make enough power to make it pay for itself.
Thank you for sharing.

Kristy said...

Marianne I hear you. Hopefully as the technology becomes more 'normal' and not the exception, costs to the consumer will go down (much like DVD players when they first came out cost more than they do now, that kinda thing).

(more) Government support for sust tech would be good. I think the change will come (hopfully well before 'crunch' time) as companies work out how they can make (as much or more) money from sustainable tech rather than non-sustainable tech.

Then the tech becomes more 'available', and hopefully the price to consumers comes down. or something like that - I'm not an economist! :)

Kellie you're welcome (you did a great job btw!). Yep 'balance' is the key and Deanne, how cool would it be if that weren't just a few but thousands of people.

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