Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Dear Taoiseach, Ministers Gormley and Ryan


This Winter
let the rich worry about the environment
the poor will have to concentrate
on surviving the winter

I have had a number of comments on the last post: “Winter Heating Costs – League Table” . A couple of these point out that I have not dealt with the relative efficiency of various types of burners for the various fuels when considering the relative price of fuels.

That was not the point of the immediate exercise in hand.

I have discussed the subject of burner - boiler efficiency several times on this blog. Oil burned in a condensing boiler at 92% efficiency - would beat bagged wood pellets for value. An open fire is simply a waste of fuel as two thirds of the heat goes out the chimney. A back boiler can up the efficiency to about 50%.

For most town dwellers the best value for money as we stand at this moment would be Smokeless Coal or Peat Briquettes burned in a closed stove or multi-fuel boiler with an average efficiency of 70% to 80%.

Best value of all – would be a wood burning stove or boiler if you live near a forest – it would also be 100% environmentally friendly.

Fuel Poverty is a Reality this Winter

It is easy for the better off folks to be thinking about the environment but many will suffer Fuel Poverty this winter and they will just be thinking about how can they get by.

If you depend on an open fire it would be a really good idea to aim to buy a closed stove. There are some very reasonably priced plain cast iron stoves now coming onto the market. I will take a look at some of these in a future post.

Let the Rich Look After the Environment.

If looking after the environment means; GeoThermal at €9000+ , or Wood Pellet systems at €5000+, or Solar this or that at many many thousands. It starts to sound like a bad joke and an insult to a growing number of people.

If the Irish Government are even half serious about sustainability they should start a simple attic insulation drive straight away. They could also directly import and distribute closed stoves to every home that depends on open fires. They could save money by scrapping SEI and getting rid of the growing number of "experts" who increasing are tending to soak up the money. We all know what a grand job the HSE have done for the health service and the sickening cost of running the paper shuffling monster.

Oh and of course they should get the finger out and actually do something on CFL and LED lighting.



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