Thursday, May 15, 2008

Clothesline Saves $20 in One Month

I can’t believe it’s been almost a month since the last post. Things have been extremely busy with the warmer weather and school. The former can be summed up in one word: GARDEN. More on that in the next few days as I take a mini-vacation.

But to kick things off, I just had to pass this along. In the posts about getting a clothesline up and running I mentioned that I’d report back on the electricity savings. Well, the NationalGrid bill came today and lo’ and behold, it’s almost $21 less than last month! Granted, the days are a bit longer so we’re using less lighting, but compared to the same time period last year (that grid on the back of the first page of your bill), we’re down 159 kilowatt hours. A quick carbon calculation shows that we saved 179 pounds of CO2 from entering the atmosphere. Small amount, yes, but imagine if 100, 1000, or 1,000,000 more homes strung up a line.

Now, we used the clothesline about 75 percent of the time due to the rain we’ve had in past weeks. Our outlay in hardware and rope was about $25, so we’re just shy of realizing a full 100 percent return on our investment (ROI) in one month. With the savings had from here on out, that’s just money in our pocket (and less carbon hitting the atmosphere).

Here’s what I’ve learned through this “experiment”: Small changes in behavior can lead to substantial savings, both in terms of money and environmental impact. We should sweat the small stuff – it REALLY does matter.

I hope to see more clotheslines up over the coming months. Feel free to shoot a comment over if you’ve realized any savings yourself. Now, I’m off to pull some clothes off the line before the rain…

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