This post originally appeared on Orphan Road.
I know, we’ve started getting good at saving energy, and that’s a good thing – keep at it. Except maybe wait a month or two. You see, because we had a huge amount of snow this year we actually have too much energy – not a problem we’re used to having in our modern world. Our dams are so full that not only has the Bonneville Power Administration (the folks in charge of these things) cut off coal and natural gas plants, but they’ve even started cutting off wind farms. The issue is that unless we generate a whole lot of electricity using our dams, we’ll have to “spill” water, or allow it to bypass our generators, and that apparently oxygenates the water and is bad for fish. Of course that’s a terrible deal for the wind producers who have gone and invested in a renewable power source just to be told to turn off their wind turbines for a while.
So, for a limited time only, don’t bother line drying your laundry. Power wash the driveway like you’ve been meaning to for years. Take a few long hot baths (assuming you have an electric water heater). But enjoy it while it lasts. Your local wind farmer will thank you.
(I actually think the best thing they could do is announce a statewide one month rate reduction. That will keep those wind farms in business. Or even better – use smart meters for real-time pricing, to let you know hour by hour what your electricity costs and let you – or your next generation super-smart dishwasher – base your usage on how strong the wind is blowing on the other side of the state. )