We have a new Leaf !

Leaf31We bought a generation 2 (40kWh battery) Leaf a few weeks ago. This has far surpassed my expectations – it is a very big step up from our earlier Leaf. Sad to see our lovely little blue car go after 5+ years but the replacement is better in almost every way. We are now able to do some much longer fossil fuel free trips. So many things to like but I think I most appreciate the way Nissan has incorporated regen driving into the new car.

I have written an article about our first weekend road trip in the new Leaf.  This was published on The Driven.

2018 Annual Report

This is my third Annual Report for our energy transition project. 2018 was a special year as it was the first full year where we had our Tesla Powerwall 2 in place – this made a big difference! We are now getting much closer to our Fossil Fuel Free goal: in 2018 90% of our electricity came from our solar PV system (60% direct; 30% via the battery (and 10% from the grid)). About 98% of our hot water energy use was from solar PV and about 90% of our EV energy use was from solar.

Petrol is the area where we now need to focus – unfortunately we’re not going to achieve any great reduction in our transport carbon footprint until we are able to buy a new generation EV.  Where are they?

You can download the 2018 Annual Report from here.

You can view an embedded version of the report below.

Amazing Low Power Heater

In the past two weeks I’ve acquired a brilliant personal heater. A heated hoodie. This is a beautifully made garment; lovely and soft and comfortable to wear indoors. Most importantly it only uses about 10W to give amazing warmth. It has three heating panels – one at the back and two in the front (see image). It far surpasses other heated clothing I have tested. I certainly find no need to have a heater on in a room when I’m wearing this. I bought it @ https://www.zarkie.com.au/product/evolve-heated-hoodie-grey/
heated hoodie

2017 Annual Report – Our Energy Transition

I have just released my Annual Report for 2017. In many ways 2017 was a year of consolidation – we made steady but not spectacular progress toward our fossil fuel free goal. The major step forward in 2017 was the installation of a Tesla Powerwall 2 in September. This is going to be a game changer! In the five months which we have had it in place only about 3% of our electricity has come from the grid. We will not achieve this for the whole of year 2018 but I think we may come close if we add more solar PV.

You can download the 2017 Annual Report from here.

Our Warm Low Energy Winter

I have just completed my report on our home heating experience over a somewhat cold 2017 Canberra winter.  This year for the first time we did not heat our home over winter.  We heated ourselves.  We kept nicely warm and made some very impressive energy savings.

You can view an embedded version of the report in the window below – you can also download the report from the bottom of  the window.

More Work on Far Infrared (FIR) Heating

Over the first three months of this year I’ve been been delving further into FIR heating.

I have produced a short document which describes what I have been doing.

cover

This document covers two topics. First of all, I talk about a very simple ‘poster’ FIR heater which I have imported from Europe: it weighs about 400g and rolls up just like a poster – this is a very interesting device. For some time now I’ve been thinking about how to improve the temperature control of FIR heaters – in the second part of the document I describe my testing of two potential controllers.

2016 Annual Report on our energy transition

About a year ago I laid out our plans for becoming a fossil fuel free family in my book ‘Our Household Energy Transition: Becoming a Fossil Fuel Free Family.’

Its now one year on (Feb 2017): we’re going well and are still on track to being fossil fuel free within the next few years.

You can find my 2016 Annual Report here.

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I’ve included some more details at the ‘Household’ tab.