Google pushes for a Greener future

in General Discussion edited January 2014
Google's mission is to provide accurate information about home/biz power use


Imagine how hard it would be to stick to a budget in a store with no prices. Well, that's pretty much how we buy electricity today. Your utility company sends you a bill at the end of the month with very few details. Most people don't know how much electricity their appliances use, where in the house they are wasting electricity, or how much the bill might go up during different seasons. But in a world where everyone had a detailed understanding of their home energy use, we could find all sorts of ways to save energy and lower electricity bills. In fact, studies show that access to home energy information results in savings between 5-15% on monthly electricity bills. It may not sound like much, but if half of America's households cut their energy demand by 10 percent, it would be the equivalent of taking eight million cars off the road.

Google?s mission is to "organize the world?s information and make it universally accessible and useful," and we believe consumers have a right to detailed information about their home electricity use. We're tackling the challenge on several fronts, from policy advocacy to developing consumer tools, and even investing in smart grid companies. We've been participating in the dialogue in Washington, DC and with public agencies in the U.S. and other parts of the world to advocate for investment in the building of a "smart grid," to bring our 1950s-era electricity grid into the digital age. Specifically, to provide both consumers and utilities with real-time energy information, homes must be equipped with advanced energy meters called "smart meters." There are currently about 40 million smart meters in use worldwide, with plans to add another 100 million in the next few years.

As much as I hate Government involvement in some commercial areas there is one area that could use some simple regulation. I'd like to see a mandate that by 2015 every appliance over a certain size/kwh rating would have to contain method for sending actual energy usage in an open method anyone could retrieve (with proper permission)

Until then the bloviating about Extreme Climate Change, Global Warming etc will fall on deaf ears. Consumers have little idea about their energy usage and the ramifications of some of their appliances.
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