Here's an idea! Palo Alto Issues, posted by Walter_E_Wallis, a resident of the Midtown neighborhood, on Apr 16, 2010 at 12:01 pm Walter_E_Wallis is a member (registered user) of Palo Alto Online
Here’s a bright idea - I was one of the fortunate few to get the two subsidized LED lamps before they ran out. Now I know that these lamps were subsidized by an overcharge on customers and as such was just a demonstration program. I would suggest that a more productive program, where real progress in energy conservation is possible. Below is what I suggested to the Utility Department. Lest it fall into the bureaucratic quicksand, I toss it out for ideas.
I would like to suggest another program - add the cost of wholesale purchase of the lamps, amortized over the expected life span of the lamp, to the utility bill. With any luck the savings would result in no net increase in the bill. With a deal like that I expect many would, as would I, go 100% LED, even to the extent of replacing fixtures. This might even expand into replacement of water closets, change out of water heaters to high efficiency tank-less, and even window replacement. If the new law requiring energy upgrade of houses before sale is passed, such a program would be very popular among seniors, and the city might even gain revenue by selling these loans on the secondary market, since they are almost loss proof.
Posted by Tim Buck II, a resident of the Downtown North neighborhood, on Apr 16, 2010 at 12:56 pm
It's a beguiling notion but, as they say, there is no free lunch. The manufacturing cost cannot be amortized over the life of the bulb (unless the Chinese nine-to-fivers who make them would amortize their paychecks, and their creditors would then amortize their rent, utilities, grocery bills, etc., etc.; and the factory's creditors do likewise with the raw materials, etc.) More likely, the PAU might borrow the cost and let you amortize it, with its interest and admin costs tacked on. Your monthly bill might not go up, but your net outlay would be higher.
Somewhere, sometime, somebody has to take the hit. That's usually us end consumers.
Posted by Walter_E_Wallis, a resident of the Midtown neighborhood, on Apr 17, 2010 at 6:36 am Walter_E_Wallis is a member (registered user) of Palo Alto Online
The subsidization of my LED purchase is a zero sum transaction, where I benefited from someone else's overcharge. My proposal would have me paying for my benefit by continuing to pay as if I made no improvement, yet using less energy.