Saturday, February 17, 2007


Two contrasting articles today:

In the Washington Post:
" the state uses less energy per capita than any other state in the country, defying the international image of American energy gluttony. Since 1974, California has held its per capita energy consumption essentially constant, while energy use per person for the United States overall has jumped 50 percent.California has managed that feat through a mixture of mandates, regulations and high prices. The state has been able to cut greenhouse-gas emissions, keep utility companies happy and maintain economic growth."
In the NYTimes:
"...residents in this part of Illinois are seeing some of the biggest rate spikes in the country — in some cases, increases of 100 percent to 200 percent.

The higher rates are touching off a fresh round of national debate over unleashing competitive forces on traditionally regulated electricity markets. Opening up the markets was supposed to lead to savings for consumers. But that did not turn out as regulators predicted. The anticipated competition among energy suppliers never fully emerged as natural gas prices more than doubled in the last decade."

I'm not sure what to make of all this. My February bill was the highest it's been (because of cold) and I don't feature doubling it (according to the articles, VA has a rate half of California's). On the other hand, that much of an increase would lead me to more conservation, which would be good for everyone.


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