January 9, 2008

California Proposal to Control Temperature in Private Homes. Beware, This Could Become Part of a Federal Energy Bill of CA Adopts it!

by @ 9:33 pm. Filed under Nuts on Parade

There is a saying, that often holds true. So goes California, so goes the nation. California had an idea a while back, that they should make everyone in their state have to use compact florescent light bulbs. I can tell you, I’ve been using the bulbs for years now and the change in a power bill is negligible. I only like them because they don’t go out as easily as incandescent bulbs and living in the South you never know when a storm might cause the lights to flicker. Those flickers cause some incandescent bulbs to die out, but compact florescent bulbs take it much better. And I just dislike having to change light bulbs in general, so I consider anything that helps me delay changing bulbs again to be a good thing. Compact florescent bulbs are WAY MORE EXPENSIVE than incandescent bulbs. As I’ve said, the change I’ve seen in power bills is negligible. If it was just about price, I’d never buy a compact florescent bulb. And they say once you use something that you know saves power you end up using more of it and nullifying some of the efficiency. I can’t say I’ve tracked how much I use a light, but the bottom line is, that I find getting the more expensive bulbs is not saving me much, maybe losing money in the end considering the cost of the bulbs.

So California made it state law to use compact florescent bulbs. I didn’t like the idea of forcing people to use such bulbs and their price really does nothing nice for the poor. But I figured it’s CA, so I won’t worry much about it. And like I said, I like the bulbs, so I didn’t think very much of it. Well then President George W. Bush signed an energy bill that mandates the entire nation must convert to compact florescent bulbs by 2020. Then I was like wait a minute! When the CA Liberals wanted it that was one thing, but trying to thrust it on the entire nation is another. The bottom line is that companies making light bulbs make more off compact fluorescents, so they pulled for the bill to become national law.

Well now, CA is proposing to control the temperature of private homes during “energy emergencies”.

State proposes to take control of home temps

California utilities would control the temperature of new homes and commercial buildings in emergencies with a radio-controlled thermostat, under a proposed state update to building energy efficiency standards.

Customers could not override the thermostats during “emergency events,” according to the proposal, part of a 236-page revision to building standards. The document is scheduled to be considered by the California Energy Commission, a state agency, on Jan. 30.

The description does not provide any exception for health or safety concerns. It also does not define what are “emergency events.”

During heat waves, customers crank up the air conditioning, putting severe strains on the state’s power supply. By giving utilities the power to automatically adjust power demand by reducing air conditioning, the hope is that more severe interruptions, such as rolling blackouts, can be avoided.

Borre Winckel, executive officer of the Riverside building association, said the mandatory aspect of the proposal smacks of “Big Brother” governmental planning.

“This is not too different from certain voices we’ve heard from the water world … where if somebody were to use too much water, the water agency can (by) remote control turn your water off,” he said.

“What’s there to keep people from deciding you’ve had your lights on too long?” Winckel continued. “This really does go very deep into government control into how we lead our lives.”

All this crying about power consumption could be resolved with one thing, nuclear power! If a state like CA moved to have more nuclear power, there would be more than enough power for all periods. Instead of pressing for more nuclear power, that would be most environmentally useful, CA officials would prefer to see mandatory controls on the temperature of private homes. This is very much a brain backwards move. And highly intrusive.

Hopefully this won’t fly in CA, because just like with compact florescent bulbs, some lobby group might find a reason to press for mandatory home temperature control to become national law.

Hat tip Michael Savage.

2 Responses to “California Proposal to Control Temperature in Private Homes. Beware, This Could Become Part of a Federal Energy Bill of CA Adopts it!”

  1. eucatastrophe Says:

    Interestingly, something similar to this was practiced in the Soviet Union–steam heat piped into the massive highrise apartments that everyone lived in was controlled centrally by the communist government.

  2. art123 Says:

    Hopefully, this proposal doesn’t become effective for as stated, it could have a nationwide effect. Recently, in NC and I am not sure if its all counties, but my mom has to pay 50% more on her water bill soon and there’s a penalty if she overexceeds the amount of usage as she explained to me.

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