mrG left a a very interesting comment on the Nelly Furtado Earth Hour concert which is sponsored by Bullfrog Power. I think he raises a very important point and we shouldn’t be blindedly falling for everything that claims to be “Green”.
This is so … wrong. It just is and I can illustrate a sliver of the wrongness of it with a numerical example:
The sponsors are Bullfrog, who admirably bill themselves as “green, carbon-free power” which they are, and I think that is great, but read the fine print! What they say they do for us is this: “donâ€™t need any special equipment or wiring and there is no change in the reliability of your service. We inject green power onto the Ontario grid to match the amount of power your home uses. You have the comfort of knowing that your electricity dollars are supporting clean, renewable power instead of polluting and carbon-intensive sources like coal. Itâ€™s that simple.”
But is it that simple? You see, what they describe is absurd. They are not going to measure my meter and go “Oh, hey better turn up the windmill another notch, some guy in Sauble Beach is using a bit more power today!” No, they have their generators, all very green, and the law of Ontario says Ontario Power must pay ‘market rates’ for any energy added to the grid. So Bullfrog hooks up their windmills, and the money flows in.
But dig the line “Bullfrog Power does cost a little more than regular electricity” … ah, you see? Ontario Power will pay them X dollars per kilowatt-hour but you and I can get suckered into paying them X dollars plus a bit for those same kilowatt-hours, duped by our own noble good nature in wanting to help. They already have the windmills and generators, they had investors and boards of directors and business plans and it all made sense because they had the guarantee of market rates for their green power. But they figured out a way to get a government-subsidy … by taxing our guilt.
Clever lads. But is it ethical? I mean, I’d love to dump nuclear power and would do it in a minute if I believed their story, but dig, they’ve already lied to me and I’m not even a customer yet!