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Why is using gas not looked at as a grid usage?

getakey

Active Member
Jan 28, 2020
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95762
IMO, an electric car, if you look at the entire supply chain from the start to the end, is far far from being "green". But no way would I try to convince a person who has an EV of that!!! For many, having a EV car is like religion. Another topic I do not get into discussions on. :)


Not trying to go down that rabbit hole, but there was an analysis done by Tesla several years ago. I believe the report was entitled "From Well to Wheel" which showed the entire supply chain for an EV compared to ICE. You might want to look it up.
 
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Ampster

Active Member
Oct 5, 2012
1,771
475
Kenwood, California
what is their definition of off grid.
The direction I am moving in is to reduce or eliminate my gas usage as I have done with gasoline. Then, with the help of batteries, self consume as much of my solar as possible. On a limited basis I am able to convenience charge my EVs from solar during the day, but the bulk of their consumption does come from the grid. My only expense for grid power is the Minimum Delivery Charges and some Non Bypassable Charges.

I do think you might want to inform your opinion after reading the article @getakey linked to. Then do some reading about some recent efforts by JB Straubel to recycle used Lithium batteries.
 

mspohr

Well-Known Member
Jul 27, 2014
9,259
10,785
California
As I read posts about folks who say they are "off" grid, how their few number of PW's allow them to be "off" grid, I am just wondering how these statements can be made. This is an energy group, and I assume we are talking about reducing our "grid" usage, which IMO, means both electricity and gas.

How does electricity get produced? A lot of it is from natural gas converted into electricity. So IMO, by default, whether one uses electricity from the "grid", or gas from a different "grid', both are grid uses.

So, for folks who really push they are being green by having solar, PV cars, etc, but still have gas heating, I offer they are not that green or even close to being off the grid. So why are these folks not changing to heat pumps if being "off" grid is so important?

When I converted my house from gas heating to heat pumps, and to an electric dryer, my energy needs changed. I probably use in the winter now at least 25Kwh per day just to heat my house, with a setting of 64 degrees. The amount of electricity I use for the rest of my house needs is trivial compared to gas. Just like for all of us in the summer, running AC has to be on electricity and it is a lot.

So the engineer in my just wonders why so many seem to say they are off grid when they are using gas to warm their homes, or even gas dryers.
It depends on how you define grid. Most people think of it as the electric grid.

Also, don't confuse "off-grid" with "green" energy. You can be off-grid and run generators and heaters with fossil fuels. That's off-grid but not green.
 
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h2ofun

Active Member
Aug 11, 2020
2,231
354
auburn, ca
During our first PSPS in October 2019 our next door neighbor pulled out his generator and ran it all night to keep his refrig and computer equipment powered. The noise was such I couldn’t fall asleep until I guess I got so exhausted I did. However the fumes from his generator came into our bedroom from the roof vents (I’m guessing here). So in addition to being tired I felt nauseous. Thankfully power came back on later the next day otherwise I was debating how I was going to approach him and his generator usage. They subsequently moved. I’d much rather see people use battery back up systems needless to say.

To the original question posed, I posted a reply to a similar question you asked in the thread about PG&E and SVCE so won’t go into that here but to point out this is the “Tesla Energy” thread and TE only does products related to electricity.
Your neighbor was just plain dumb and rude! I ran my generator a few hours a day, and sure did not run it at night. With that said, I did get some thing defrosting, but, to run it all night, and gas, .....
 

h2ofun

Active Member
Aug 11, 2020
2,231
354
auburn, ca
Clearly their definition is different. Life is full of ambiguities. Ever wonder why Baskin Robins has 31 flavors? Well the truth is that they actually have more, but the answer is really simple. Not everyone wants plain Vanilla. Life goes on.
Guess what, I only eat vanilla, surprised ? :)
 

h2ofun

Active Member
Aug 11, 2020
2,231
354
auburn, ca
I would not even try to define that "green" means the same to different people. However, the long term cost of driving an EV has proven to be a lot less than my ICE cars.
Lets see. I have a 1990 mazda with 118K miles. I drive like 1000 miles a year. Could me buying a EV save me money in my lifetime?
 
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h2ofun

Active Member
Aug 11, 2020
2,231
354
auburn, ca
It depends on how you define grid. Most people think of it as the electric grid.

Also, don't confuse "off-grid" with "green" energy. You can be off-grid and run generators and heaters with fossil fuels. That's off-grid but not green.
I agree, but when I see the but I have a zero true up cost, implying no overall energy cost. Bottom line life is a journey, and who dies with the most toys, wins. :)
 

mspohr

Well-Known Member
Jul 27, 2014
9,259
10,785
California
I agree, but when I see the but I have a zero true up cost, implying no overall energy cost. Bottom line life is a journey, and who dies with the most toys, wins. :)
What does this mean?
"when I see the but I have a zero true up cost"

"who dies with the most toys, wins" That's the problem with capitalism. The environment loses.
 

jjrandorin

Moderator, Model 3, Tesla Energy Forums
Nov 28, 2018
8,258
9,122
Riverside Co. CA
I said this in the other thread, but this also is not a "tesla energy" thread, it is a "energy, environment and policy" thread. A discussion on "why dont people consider gas to be pulling from "the grid" has nothing to do with tesla energy, and is a general energy discussion.
 

DHevey

Member
Oct 18, 2019
29
23
Bluffton, SC
IMO, an electric car, if you look at the entire supply chain from the start to the end, is far far from being "green". But no way would I try to convince a person who has an EV of that!!! For many, having a EV car is like religion. Another topic I do not get into discussions on. :)

I would have zero desire to own a property "off grid".. I like my creative comforts, and willing to pay to get them easily.

Not try to say I am green, or anyone is not, etc. Just was wondering when some folks say or imply they are off grid with batteries, but they use lots of gas, what is their definition of off grid. Just an interesting question with no intent to get emotional. Just curious.

I had the benefit of designing my home. The electrical service is separated into two 200 amp panels, both fed by the grid, but one with 22 kW of PV and five Powerwalls. For all intents and purposes, the PV panel is "off grid", feeding all essential circuits, including master bedroom heat pump, refrigerator, lights, dryer.....everything important. My hot water heater is electric and has a supplemental solar thermal heating system under my metal roof (And under my thin film solar panels). For this panel, I am off-grid 99% of the time, but I leave the grid connected so that I can sell back excess. There are several days a year where I switch over to the grid because we have had multiple days in a row of rain, little production and normal consumption.

The other, on-grid panel services my pool pumps, several other heat pumps, and other, non essential circuits. In the end, I produce about 75% of my electrical consumption. I have natural gas service for cook top stove and gas fireplaces, all of which I could do without if we had an extended outage.
 

Ampster

Active Member
Oct 5, 2012
1,771
475
Kenwood, California
We are in a transition. Natural gas was a popular form of ilumination in cities before Edison invented the light bulb. It is still an efficient form of heat. It has become more efficient with combined cycle power plants and it is cleaner than coal. It may be cleaner than burning gasoline in vehicles. In California the new building codes favor the use of electricity in the form of heat pumps to water and
 

David_Cary

Active Member
Dec 17, 2012
1,188
685
Cary, NC
Being off grid is probably not really the green solution. Lots of extra panels and then large batteries that have to be produced. It is still a goal to strive for but not with huge overproduction and huge batteries.
That being said, I built to keep the heat needs very low as I know winter - particularly cloudy winter days - is the biggest challenge.
I have gotten close to net zero energy - not quite the same as off-grid - only EVs, heat pumps etc and our family used 16.7 MWH and generated 12.7 MWH. I could have done NG heat and December/Jan would still be tough because of the EVs.
Not sure I can get away with 66 degrees in the winter but we aren't much higher.
Don't forget to drive a little slower in the winter....
My best play to be off-grid would be to use public or super charging. I have a free L2 in walking distance ... but alas, my $500 a year in grid maintenance and electricity wouldn't pay for batteries - and the time lost walking back and forth to the L2.
 

h2ofun

Active Member
Aug 11, 2020
2,231
354
auburn, ca
Being off grid is probably not really the green solution. Lots of extra panels and then large batteries that have to be produced. It is still a goal to strive for but not with huge overproduction and huge batteries.
That being said, I built to keep the heat needs very low as I know winter - particularly cloudy winter days - is the biggest challenge.
I have gotten close to net zero energy - not quite the same as off-grid - only EVs, heat pumps etc and our family used 16.7 MWH and generated 12.7 MWH. I could have done NG heat and December/Jan would still be tough because of the EVs.
Not sure I can get away with 66 degrees in the winter but we aren't much higher.
Don't forget to drive a little slower in the winter....
My best play to be off-grid would be to use public or super charging. I have a free L2 in walking distance ... but alas, my $500 a year in grid maintenance and electricity wouldn't pay for batteries - and the time lost walking back and forth to the L2.
So far wife lets me keep mini splits at 64. I just wear long underwear during the day, and a nice electric blanket at night. Until I get into teh spring and see how use vs production is, will see if next year I can kick to 66 and still end up with a zero or negative true up
 

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