“Mrs Foster and her son, Ken Harcombe, have built a house at Whangateau, near Leigh, which is completely self-sufficient in energy with a windmill, four photovoltaic solar energy panels, a solar water heater and a woodburning stove. The house cost only $200,000. But the windmill cost just over $2000, the four solar panels cost $2000 each plus $4000 for an “inverter”, which allows them to run normal appliances, the solar water heater cost more than $3000 and the wood stove, $12,000.”
A Total of $29k for self sufficiency, no grid power connected at all since it was going to cost $20k for the line. The article points out that a cheaper stove could have been chosen. What the article dosnt say though is what lifestyle choices had to be made to accomdate this situation nor what the running and maintenance costs might be.
On the surface this looks a great arrangement and goes a long way to proving that NZ can avoid problems with energy shortages that have
plagued us since before the second world war. While this lifestyle will not be everyones choice I am sure the reduction of the domestic component it could provide would go a long way to reducing the demand currently on our generation resources.
Even if only solar water heating was used by all new domestic buildings (and smaller commercial buildings) the demand reduction would be
significant, but is the Govt (or the energy companies) considering this, no and NO, and why not? Because they lose too much!