We have had some pretty surprising successes in our efforts to reduce energy consumption. But there are a number of things we have tried that don’t work as well as we want.
We have had great success with most compact fluorescent bulbs. Even in a couple years, they have gotten a lot better at producing bulbs whose color balance is pleasing and warm. But quality has been spotty in some cases, and dimmable CF bulbs aren’t there, yet. We have had several cases where bulbs seem to output about 1/2 their rated output after we turn them on, and then maybe brighten up a little later. We had one bulb that just seems to have failed in this way and a couple others that may be in the same boat. Dimmable bulbs do not live up to their color balance ratings when they are even slightly dimmed, and they buzz.
I bought a snow scoop to replace my snowblower. It has only snowed once so far this year, but the snow scoop was no easier to use than any other shovel.
We tried composting, but I don’t think it’s worthwhile for us.
I totally love our Prius’s, but it is true that their mileage decreases during the winter. Not sure if regular cars do as well.
The jury is still out on GreenDimes, the service we used to help reduce junk mail. It’s a little hard to say if the reason we get less junk mail is due to our efforts or theirs. IdealBite has gotten a little stale, and focused a lot more on organic or natural products for women.
My greatest disappointment is that we don’t seem to have been very good at helping people think about the issues of energy conservation and global warming in a way that causes them to actually change their habits. I guess it’s just a personal decision about what each person chooses to think important. But “lead and they shall follow” doesn’t really seem to be working.