What’s in Your Electricity? Energy Consumers need Energy Facts

Do you know how much pollution electric utilities are causing in your name?

Energy Facts Label: COAL - Copyright © Tony Seba

Energy Facts Label: COAL – What’s in your electricity?
Copyright ©Tony Seba

Do you know how much mercury, sludge, and volatile organic compounds you are responsible for? What about Carbon Dioxide, Nitrogen Oxide, and Methane? How much thorium and uranium get dumped in our air, water, and land to generate the kWh that you use every year?

The Smart Grid will be all about providing better data so all participants in the energy supply chain can make better and quicker decisions. Engaged consumers will want detailed and instant facts about their energy consumption (not just kWh and cost.)

So I took a page from the food industry and today I’m introducing the “Energy Fact Label” that I think utilities may want to deliver to power consumers. This is a start. Some important variables are missing. I would want more information about how much water was used to generate that energy. Others may want to know what percent of the natural gas was produced by fracking techniques.

Food Labels have shown that consumer engagement starts with open, honest information. As the Smart Grid reaches its potential and gets to be truly interactive, utilities would provide an iPhone-like platform and application developers would offer visualization and decision-making tools so that consumers can purchase power according to their own needs and wants.

Let me know what you think!

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