With the recent change of housemates, I’m now getting the electricity account in my name. That means I’ll be setting up green power for the house.
I established my account with EnergyAustralia this morning. The lady I spoke to was pleasant and set up the account with a minimum of fuss. (The $200 bond if you don’t direct debit is annoying but expected, so I’ll let that go)
To her credit she promoted the GreenFuture product over the phone. I know from working at WWF that not all “green” power products are created equal, so I asked for more information. I also asked if information was sent out in the “welcome pack” about this option and she said no: “because it’s an environmentally friendly product we don’t print information about this”. This is absolute rubbish – you can get environmentally friendly printing for a cost comparable to non-friendly printing at volume. But I digress.
She promptly informed me that information was available on the website. It is, although that wouldn’t be immediately apparent if you used the search function (the result for “Green Future” returned the first hit at position 18).
Anyway, cutting to the chase, it turns out that for $1 extra per week, EnergyAustralia will source 1 MegaWatt Hour of electricity per year from renewable sources. I’ll give them points for ease-of-use, but 1,000 KWh (1 MWh) isn’t a big jump – just under 15% of the average household consumption. (The average household consumes approx. 7,000 KWh of electricity every year.)
I think I’ll be calling Origin Energy when my account number arrives to see what other options are available. WWF maintains a list of Green Power retailers if you’re interested in others. Will keep you posted as things progress…