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Growing concerns - shadows of echoes of memories of songs — LiveJournal
j4
j4
Growing concerns
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From: mooism Date: April 11th, 2010 11:27 pm (UTC) (Link)
The rubbish bit at the start with the food did put me off the Dr Who, and I only gave it another chance on iPlayer because my girlfriend told me it got better after that bit.

I wonder how a Remoska compares to an ordinary oven w.r.t. energy usage? Given that it's generally a bad idea to use electricity for heating except when using a heat pump? Although it does say it's cheaper to run than a normal oven, and presumably that means it's using less energy.
j4 From: j4 Date: April 12th, 2010 09:47 am (UTC) (Link)
Lots of things seem to say that the Remoska is more energy-efficient, but I haven't found any solid figures.

a bad idea to use electricity for heating

Why's that? Are you saying that if/when we do get an oven, a gas oven would be better? (Definitely getting a gas hob - at the moment we are making do with one of those portable electric one-ring things - but I found gas ovens seemed to cook a bit unevenly... OTOH those were shitty gas ovens in rented houses, so, hm.)

It's such a minefield, though, and after a while I start thinking "well, it'd be easier if we didn't eat". :-{
ultraruby From: ultraruby Date: April 12th, 2010 10:01 am (UTC) (Link)
Using electricity for heating is inefficent because it's secondary energy, i.e the gas or oil or coal or whatever gets burned in a power station to turn the tubine make the electric, which then gets transformed down and channelled all across the land for you to then use, losing some energy along the way. When you burn gas directly you're using it as the primary source of energy, thus less loss.

That said, we still have an electric oven. Gas hob and gas heating but yeah. Electric ovens are just generally swifter and more even in my opinion.
From: hsenag Date: April 12th, 2010 11:06 am (UTC) (Link)
You're assuming that the energy costs of pumping gas to your home rather than to the power station are less than the generation/transmission losses for electricity, and also that there isn't any difference in the efficiency of burning the gas at the power station and in the home. I'm sure it's the case (that using gas directly is better) but it does need to be considered.

Also, if you actually care about CO2 emissions rather than energy usage, then the story for electricity becomes rather more complicated.
ultraruby From: ultraruby Date: April 12th, 2010 11:15 am (UTC) (Link)
Oh aye, I make no claim for any of that stuff actually being very correct; it's just something I picked up at school and have sort of stuck to ever since as a rule of thumb.
j4 From: j4 Date: April 12th, 2010 11:27 am (UTC) (Link)
Yes, we do care about CO2 emissions - we've just switched to Ecotricity and we're on their New Energy Plus (100% renewables) tariff. Still locked into British Gas for gas, but we'll change that when we can.

Cooking on a gas hob seems more efficient than electric because you don't have to leave it on for ages before it gets hot enough to do anything, but I'm not claiming that that means it is more efficient in terms of anything except my time/patience. And there are certainly better electric hobs out there than the one we've got.
From: hsenag Date: April 12th, 2010 11:36 am (UTC) (Link)
Wind power worries me because it's not always on and we don't have the infrastructure to make effective use of bursty sources of power, so it's unclear how things will work out once it's a substantial portion of our generation mix.

Re the hob, it'd be pretty hard to measure the efficiency difference, especially since the answer will be different in winter to summer (in winter the waste heat has some use since you'd be heating your house anyway).
j4 From: j4 Date: April 12th, 2010 11:42 am (UTC) (Link)
I wondered how long we'd be on ecotricity before someone told me it was useless/bad/wrong. Three weeks is actually better than I expected.

in winter the waste heat has some use since you'd be heating your house anyway

If I admit that we didn't actually go and turn the heating off whenever we turned the hob on over the winter, that's probably tantamount to admitting to raping polar bears, isn't it?
From: hsenag Date: April 12th, 2010 11:49 am (UTC) (Link)
I don't know if it is useless or not - I suspect that at worst it's neutral. It just worries me when it's touted as the solution to energy problems (whether fossil fuel exhaustion or CO2 emissions).

If I admit that we didn't actually go and turn the heating off whenever we turned the hob on over the winter, that's probably tantamount to admitting to raping polar bears, isn't it?

Only if you don't have a thermostat to do it for you, which is unlikely :-)
(Deleted comment)
From: mooism Date: April 12th, 2010 12:18 pm (UTC) (Link)
It's a shame they don't have any solid figures on their site.

A gas oven with a fan should cook more evenly than a gas oven without, surely?

(What ultraruby said for using electricity for heating.)

"well, it'd be easier if we didn't eat"

Nonono, you just get takeaways instead. And then you get to moralistically condemn the takeaway people for using so much more energy than you ;-)
addedentry From: addedentry Date: April 12th, 2010 02:05 pm (UTC) (Link)
you get to moralistically condemn the takeaway people for using so much more energy than you

One of our fellow lowcarbonistas in Oxford wants to (re)introduce community ovens. Perhaps I could argue for the economies of scale of takeaways?
From: mooism Date: April 12th, 2010 02:28 pm (UTC) (Link)
Are community ovens basically takeaways with your own ingredients? I've not encountered them before.
addedentry From: addedentry Date: April 12th, 2010 02:36 pm (UTC) (Link)
It wasn't at all clear to me, but yes, I think the idea was that you would use a baker's oven when they weren't baking. No need to enumerate the potential problems here.
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