Welcome to this blog where I hope that we can help each other find ways of cutting our energy costs and ultimately creating a local alternative.
I think that finding ways to reduce my costs and to find alternatives are no longer just idealistic dreams. For I think that we are now on the slope for much higher oil prices. Yes they may go down for a while. But I believe that the trend is up and up a lot. Even this coming winter will see an oil tank costing over $1,000. In the past I would have had 4 fills from September to April. Who can afford that!
Over the last 5 years I have done a lot to reduce my dependence on oil. But I found it very hard to get good advice and I have made every mistake possible. I wished that I could find a site on the web where I could trust that I was getting the best advice possible. I also wished that I could speak to or at least exchange emails with others who knew more than me or who were testing systems, processes and equipment.
So this is my purpose on this blog. To create a space where a growing community of people can connect with each other, exchange ideas and build a body of trusted knowledge so that many of us can cut their energy costs and in the end reduce our dependency on power sources that we cannot control.
I will do a lot of the legwork – starting with sharing what worked and did not for me. I will introduce you to others that know more than me who can become a resource for your questions. I will use video to show you in detail what others are doing. I invite you too to tell me your stories and to send me pictures and video of what you are doing. I will tell the story also of what the PEI government and the local communities are doing. I hope to share stories of what other communities are doing as well.
So that there is no barrier to ideas and to connections, I am also starting a Ning Community Site where it will be possible for anyone who is interested to join the community as an equal participant. Here you can post directly, join forums, post videos and pictures.
I have a particular interest in my home PEI – but of course all of us face the same problem and my bet is that this community might surprise us by being much broader.
I close my welcome with my aha about all of this. Why does doing this work so excite me?
It excites me because I think that we may be once again at the beginning of an old Island story. PEI was founded by tenant farmers. Men and women who cleared 100 acres with an ax and a horse. But they were tenants who paid rent to landlords that did not even live on the Island. All that was created was by their sweat and blood. But they had no control – for they were tenants. In the 1800’s a movement began to buy off the landlords. After a long struggle in the 1860’s, they were successful and the Golden Age of PEI began. A time when most families were free of the control of others.
Where we are now reminds me of this struggle.
We too have given up much of what is important to us to decision makers and to processes that we cannot influence. You and I cannot control the price of oil or its supply. Nor can our government . Nor can the government of Canada. Oil is the foundation of our current way of life. Not only do we heat our houses, drive our cars but oil is also how we grow and buy our food. Oil is at the heart of everything. But now it will get very expensive and we may not even get it sometimes when there will be disruptions.
So what do we do? We can complain. We can blame. We can become impoverished.
Or we can act ourselves. We can be like our ancestors who decided that their lives would no longer be controlled by outsiders. We can work together to reduce our dependency and to create a local alternative. We can take charge of our destiny and we can give our children a future.
What would we have to do?
I think that we can cut our energy use in half. I think that we should aim to create 50% of our own energy locally on PEI?If we did this, we would in effect become independent. We would become a true HAVE province. Not because we were lucky and found oil but because we were brave and smart and we found a better way of living.
I am nearly 60. I want to die knowing that we are well on our way to breaking free. Wouldn’t you?
I don’t think we can do this on our own as isolated individuals. If we start to work with each other, we will be able to learn more and to do more.
This is my dream.