The “Weather Channel” for Your Energy Supply
New White Paper Released
Sabreez has just completed our year-long assessment of California’s renewable energy production relative to hourly consumer demand in terms of the Wind Number and Solar Boost. The assessment presents a monthly summary of the Wind Number and Solar Boost for October 2016, January 2017, April 2017, and July 2017. The monthly data show seasonal variations in clean energy production, the best and worst hours of the day to use electric power, and discusses challenges in achieving further reduction of carbon pollution, which is shown to be inversely correlated with the Wind Number and Solar Boost.
Sabreez is a residential demand response company serving the utility industry in California. We propagate a daily consumer-facing clean energy forecast showing energy consumers when their electric power supply is clean or dirty. The clean energy forecast provides actionable data to encourage load shifting on a daily and weekly basis, and informs energy consumers when critical peak pricing events are anticipated to avoid unnecessary energy use during periods of extreme demand. We also show energy consumers how to use cleaner energy to reduce their energy costs either through the existing technology in their home, or through the acquisition of new smart home devices and technology. Please visit our About Us page or Contact Us for more information.
Stay Cool During Wind Power Season
It’s Cooling Season
In the Summer, California’s electric rates are higher in the afternoon when air conditioning loads push demand higher. So here is an easy way to lower your costs by up to One Dollar or more per day and stay comfortable on those Hot Summer Afternoons;
- Know when your peak hours are on your chosen time of use electric rate.
- Know your comfortable temperature setting, i.e. 68 degrees, 72 degrees, or whatever feels comfortable.
- One hour before the start of your peak time period adjust the temperature setting one or two degrees cooler to pre-cool your home. In California, there is now so much solar, this is often a time when the energy supply is very clean.
- If you have a multi-story home, turn off the downstairs air conditioning unit during the peak period. You might leave the fan on to circulate cool air descending from the upper story.
- Around 7 or 8 pm, turn the temperature setting on the air conditioning higher by 2-3 degrees, but leave the fan on. If you time it right, you can avoid that last kWh that needs to turn on each day around 9pm to meet systemwide demand.
The reason we do this is to lower our energy costs, but also to decrease the amount electric power that needs to come from natural gas peaker plants each day. Natural gas peaker plants are the main way that California balances electric power supply with your energy demand. They are expensive, and create more pollution than typical natural-gas-combined-cycle plants that operate over the whole day.
Most modern connected thermostats like the Nest, Ecobee, or the Honeywell Lyric offer a high degree of control, but they often have no way of knowing your electric rate tariff. Utilities sometimes partner with thermostat companies to better manage energy use, but in the case of California, that’s often done by companies like Sabreez. Register and we’ll help lower your bill by up to 20%.
It’s Wind Power Season
California has so much solar now that the hours between 9am and 3pm are often the time of day when energy is cleanest. After the evening peak has passed, wind power is often cranking up to meet overnight power demand. California’s clean energy is abundant and being developed more and more each year, but it’s not always “on.” When it is “on,” electric costs drop, and if you’re not already saving money with a time of use electric rate, you will be in a year and a half when California switches to mandatory time of use electric rates.
Beyond the thermostat, there are a range of methods you can use to decrease the pollution during these hours of the day. Just remember, you don’t have to sacrifice comfort to make the “switch” to cleaner energy.
California’s electric rates are rising, but you don’t have to pay more if you switch to times when energy is cleaner. Using this method and understanding the energy supply is great way to reduce your impact on the environment and save money using cleaner energy.
California’s Clean Energy Ecosystem- Part 1
California Leads Our Nation in Clean Energy
California has created an energy ecosystem that is among the cleanest in the world. With ever increasing amounts of solar and wind power generating electricity, electric power pricing is becoming increasingly variable depending on whether it’s sunny or windy. When it’s sunny and windy and fewer people are using electric power, prices turn negative to provide an incentive for people to use the electric power. This is reflected in the Wind Number, which trends higher during these periods. We provide daily clean energy forecasting to energy consumers so that you can save money using energy when it’s cleaner.
Great consumer brands are emerging in this new ecosystem. These companies solve global warming while providing value to energy consumers. You may already have some of their products in your home, but as we’ll see, you don’t need a shiny new “smart thing” to use cleaner energy. If you want to reduce your energy consumption, use energy when it’s cleaner, and save money while helping the environment, these are the names that you need to know.
There are dozens of wifi-enabled thermostats now, but none has a more loyal following than Nest. Wifi-enabled thermostats increase your comfort control, but also give the thermostat company data that can help you to save money using a range of automated controls. For example, homes that have two cooling systems can stagger compressor operation to decrease maximum household load. They can also shift a kWh or two to either side of the peak load for the day without affecting comfort. In the case of Nest, you get a monthly report providing energy insights that can reduce your bill by up to 10%.
Teslas are popping up everywhere in the country now, which is remarkable given their price, which ranges from $60,000 to $138,800. When Tesla offered a mid-price vehicle in 2016, people jumped at the chance to wait more than a year to get one. The fuel costs are negligible using an electric vehicle, and maintenance costs are smaller too. The new Chevy Spark is set to be the cheapest form of transportation next to taking public transportation. Since electric power is now cheapest when it’s cleanest, your transportation can be environmentally friendly, if you charge your vehicle when Wind Numbers are high.
There are hundreds of ways to go solar in California, but as the first company to offer a residential power purchase agreement, SunRun has always been at the top of the pack. Now in California, you can add battery storage to your system to power your home in the morning and late afternoon when natural gas peaker plants are cranking up. There is so much solar on both sides of the electric meter in California, that when’s it’s sunny during periods of low demand, prices often turn negative due to a surplus of electric power. That’s especially true when it’s sunny and windy at the same time! These are great times to stock up on clean energy, and when used in conjunction with the Wind Number, allow double the pay back. Using clean energy is a great way to save money, whether the solar is on your roof, someone else’s, or out in a sunny field in another part of the state. If you have a sunny rooftop, now is the time to get a quote!
Cree LED lighting
Replacing any incandescent lighting you still have in your home with LEDs is the best clean energy investment you can make. An LED light bulb can last for more than 10,000 hours, and save about 50 watts per bulb. What would you have paid for that 500 kWh per bulb? In California, it’s more than $100, which proves that LEDs are a great return on investment. Since there is a strong correlation between lighting needs and the time of day when peaker plants are cranking out pollution to meet demand, there is also a significant reduction in your home’s carbon footprint when you make the switch. That’s why Sabreez often gives away free LED lighting to our subscribers.
Appliances have featured delay buttons for years, but did you know they can be used to operate your appliances on cleaner energy? Now GE offers an App to take control to the next level. You can control when to pre-heat your oven or see when your laundry is done, among a plethora of other features. To reduce your carbon footprint, you can also clean your dishes or clothes when Wind Numbers are higher; soon you’ll just hit “auto” to run them on cleaner energy!
General Electric might not be the first brand you think of when you think of “smart home,” but GE has been a leader in the shift toward energy-efficient appliances. They even make the wind turbines that provide the wind power!
The Wind Number Method
All of these great new technologies work with our patent-pending Wind Number Method to increase your clean energy consumption, lower your energy bill, and decrease your impact on the environment. As we introduce more and more clean energy into the system, it becomes increasingly important to consider Mother Nature’s natural energy production schedule. Once solar and wind power generators are installed to harvest energy when it’s available, it saves money to use cleaner energy.
There are many ways to use the Wind Number clean energy information system. When combined with your utility’s new time-variable electric rates, it’s easy to save 10-20% on your bill. Download our app, follow us on social media, or subscribe to our newsletter today and start saving.
California’s Energy Supply and Demand
The amount of clean energy feeding California homes is incredible now, and it’s growing rapidly each year. California’s hydroelectric power has been around for a long time, but increasingly electricity from Wind and Solar are making a huge dent in the need for fossil fuels. Fossil fuels are rapidly becoming the auxiliary fuel to power the State’s economy.
California developed some of the Nation’s first Wind Farms, and the technology has come a long way since then. More than 4,000 MW of California’s electric power is generated during windy periods. In a much shorter period of time, California has installed more than 15,000 MW of Solar across the State, and plans to install much more over the next 5 years. With today’s peak electric-power demand of 31,000 MW, it’s easy to see that there will be times when the clean energy supply will exceed California’s demand for electricity.
California has a diverse mix of other electric power resources, but the electric power supply is generally balanced with demand by natural gas power plants that generate more pollution and greenhouse gases. They’re expensive to operate, because they only run for a few hours per day. Now that renewables are more cost-competitive than ever, the emerging problem is decreasing the run time of these natural gas plants.
Running your appliances on Mother Nature’s schedule saves money on your electric bill, and it’s been that way for years. Most people are wasting hundreds of dollars each year and don’t know it. Using a rate program that varies over the hours of the day has been optional; However, that’s going to change in a couple of years. California is switching to mandatory time of use pricing in 2019.
There are a number of ways to use cleaner energy today with the technologies already in your home. Even better, more and more new technologies are being offered to consumers to reduce global warming. Using power at the hours of the day when clean energy is abundant reduces the need for fossil fuel power plants. Just check our website to monitor clean energy production, download our mobile App, or subscribe to our newsletter to start saving money today. Clean Energy Costs Less!
Using Natural Energy
Summer’s Last Gasp- Start of Duck Season
The last week of September began with unusually hot weather and wrapped up with near record Wind Numbers over the weekend as wind and solar power were peaking during periods of low energy demand. The Wind Numbers over the period are illustrated below.
September Heat Wave-
Monday’s high pressure led to a complete absence of Wind Power and excessive heat, leading to high seasonal air conditioning load. As a result, we saw afternoon spikes in energy prices up to $80 or more per MWh, as shown below.
Wind Numbers picked up early Friday morning as high pressure moved out and temperatures cooled. The energy supply was exceptionally clean all day Sunday as system-wide Wind Power generation remained above 2 GW while Solar Power plants were cranking up simultaneously. As solar began falling off from it’s daily peak production of approximately 8 GW around 5 pm, Wind Power peaked at approximately 4 GW, then slowly dropped to about 2.5 GW by the early morning hours Monday. During the daytime hours, marginal energy costs ranged from $16 to $20 per MWh, rising moderately higher with peaker plant operation starting around 6 pm.
Still a Peaker Problem-
Comparing Wind Numbers from Monday and the following Sunday, a strong correlation can be observed between the Wind Number and real time pricing. The Wind Number is defined as the ratio of Wind Power over power from thermal power plants (times 100), so this should be expected. Total system-wide net electric-power demand (demand less solar and wind) remained remarkably stable through the middle of the day on Sunday, then spiked more than 10 GW in the late afternoon. It would be helpful if consumers used less power during these afternoon hours, and there are a range of technologies that provide consumers with the power to control when they use electric power. Take a look at our earlier Blog posts to learn some these technologies that can be used to increase your consumption of cleaner energy. Using Cleaner Energy Sabreez.
Energy is Changing
California is leading the United States away from fossil fuels and into a natural system of energy production from Wind and Solar. When combined with energy efficient technologies like LED lighting, smart appliances, wifi-enabled thermostats, home solar, and electric vehicles, people are helping to create a more sustainable energy system that costs significantly less in the long run.
In the short run however, energy costs have risen quite a lot in California. The good news is you don’t have to pay more if you adapt to this new system. Here are a few easy ways to start saving today;
1. Replace your lighting with LED light bulbs. A six pack of LEDs can save 300 watts every hour they’re used, then last for 20,000 hours. That’s about 6 cents per hour in California, or $100 per year, and more than $1,000 over their lifetime.
2. Go on a time of use rate today rather than waiting until 2019. On a time of use rate, you’ll pay less all Winter and only pay more during peak Summer hours. The Wind Number shows you when rates are low.
3. Install a smart thermostat that improves control of your heating and cooling system.
4. Use the delay button on your appliances to run them when Wind Numbers are high and rates are lower.
5. Take a look at your electric bill online. PG&E, SCE, and SDG&E provide all kinds of free money-saving tips that in many cases are personalized to your household’s energy use.
6. Consider rooftop solar if you are a home owner. If you are not, there are other ways to replace your energy consumption with clean energy.
Each of these money-saving tips can lower your bill by 5-10% or even more. Sabreez is a residential energy service company that provides free LEDs when you register to get real time clean energy information. Our service is free to California energy consumers. Just because California is making a huge investment to solve global warming, it doesn’t mean that you have to pay more.
California’s power system is pure awesomeness. Here at Sabreez, we’ve been watching California’s renewable energy development for years now, and it just keeps getting better. There are times of the day when solar and wind power are cranking out more than 12 GW (pronounced Gee-Ga Whats) of electric power. That’s huge! So much in fact, that it’s time for utilities to start discounting clean energy to encourage consumers to shift their energy usage to times of the day when energy is clean and abundant. Sabreez shows people when energy is cleaner and costs less with the Wind Number.
California has a variety of power plants, including hydroelectric, nuclear, geothermal, fossil fuel burning plants, and other renewable energy resources. Very little of California’s power comes from coal; most of it comes from natural gas power plants. When solar and wind power are being naturally delivered, it decreases fuel costs and consumer prices. This natural rhythm driven by the sun leads to a spike in prices each afternoon. Prices are lower the rest of the day, and all night long (when wind is strongest). The Wind Number is a measure of this natural energy system. When Wind Numbers are high, prices are low and your power supply is cleaner. What’s not to like?
So you’re probably wondering, how can I take advantage of this to save money? It’s easy, and we’ll tell you how in the coming weeks. Yes, some ways require solar and other energy saving products, but anybody can reduce their bill by more than 10% with just a little knowledge and our new App that shows you clean energy production in real time. Follow Wind Number on Facebook or subscribe to our free service to learn how to save money using cleaner energy. It’s too easy.
California’s Energy Ecosystem
California now has over 8 GW of solar power and over 4 GW of wind power on a daily basis. It’s not always sunny or windy, so we still need on-demand natural-gas power plants to fill in the gaps, but fuel costs (and overall costs) are dropping like a rock. Conversely, there are times when it’s simultaneously sunny and windy, and there is a whole lot of cheap power available; that’s why Sabreez shows people when energy is cleaner using the concept of the Wind Number. Mother Nature supplies enough power to meet all of our energy needs, and modern technology is quickly developing to make that a reality. Overall, a dynamic energy ecosystem is emerging.
Wind Numbers over 70 mean power is clean. When Wind Numbers are dropping, it means demand is outpacing supply and fossil-fuel power plants are cranking up to meet your needs. The Wind Number is a simple way to see how clean your energy supply is. With California’s new electric rates, the fuel-cost-savings are passed on to you. It’s easy to save 10-20% on your electric bill if you sign up for a time of use rate with your utility and then use cleaner energy with the Wind Number.
Home solar is a great way to use cleaner energy. So is driving an electric car. During the Summer, it’s best to charge the electric car between 11 pm and 5 am when Wind Numbers are high. Your home solar system can meet your needs and feed the grid to power other people’s air conditioning use. Setting your thermostat a couple of degrees higher on Summer afternoons reduces the need for additional power plants to turn on. LED lighting helps too; it barely uses electricity. Finally, running your appliances using the “delay” button can shift energy usage away from the afternoon hours and effectively decrease your impact on the environment. As appliances become wi-fi connected, you’ll be able to hit auto and run them when Wind Numbers are high. Here at Sabreez, we can’t wait for that!
California’s energy ecosystem is illustrated on the California Independent System Operator’s (CAISO) website. CAISO shows electric power generation from different sources, but it also shows energy demand. Supply and demand must always be in balance. People installing solar and charging their electric vehicles is starting to show up in demand. This is a new development over the last couple of years, but the trend is going to continue, and even accelerate. It’s time to increase our energy awareness and use more clean energy and less fossil fuels.
Here’s the thing to remember; when you use energy matters now more than ever before. Reducing energy use near sundown is a good thing. The Wind Number is designed to let you know when energy is cleaner so that you can make an informed choice as an energy consumer, and reduce your energy costs using cleaner energy.
Time to Use Renewable Energy
It’s June, and that means it’s renewable energy season! Both Wind and Solar should be cranking this Summer thanks to California’s investment in clean energy. We all know global warming is a problem, and that the solution is using more clean energy, but you might not know WHEN energy is clean or dirty. The Wind Number is a measure of clean energy production in California; higher Wind Numbers mean cleaner energy. The chart below shows last month’s average Wind Numbers throughout the day, and when they are high, low, or in between. We’ve highlighted good times to use power, and times when a peaker plant (red) needs to turn on to meet your energy needs.
Here’s the solution to global warming; Use More Clean Energy- and less fossil fuels. It’s that easy. Since the Wind Number is the ratio of clean energy to fossil fuels, the Wind Number is a great tool to help people solve global warming! If you register now, you’ll get a free box of LEDs to help you start saving. One box of LEDs can save you $100 per year, so it’s worth the effort. We’ll also let you know when energy is cleaner each day. If you call your utility and go on a time of use rate, using clean energy saves money. Using your new rate with the Wind Number can lower bill by more than 10%. How cool is that!
The chart above is a great tool for saving money, but there are easy techniques to shift your energy usage to times when energy is cleaner. Conversely, every time we use power in the late afternoon, it adds to the problem. Be a part of the solution and register today. It’s easy to save more than 10% on your bill and it’s free, so why wait.
A Rising Tide
Sea level has risen 3.8 centimeters (cm) since President Obama took office. #ThanksObama. That’s one and a half inches in just over 7 years. Although the trend is accelerating, if sea level rise just continued at it’s present rate, it would be a foot higher in 2100. Most experts think it’s more like 2-3 feet higher given development trends. There are measures that we’ll have to take before the end of the century to prevent it from rising much further. That’s one reason why we’ve installed lots of clean energy power plants like wind turbines and solar farms. That effort has led to a rapid decrease in costs, making clean energy less expensive than electric power generated from fossil fuel burning plants. We’ve always known that one day clean energy would cost less than fossil fuels, and it’s happening right now, before our eyes. In some places it happened a while ago. We don’t have to worry about running out of fossil fuels anymore. Enough clean energy is available every day to power the planet. All we have to do as individuals, is make an effort to use it, and save money in the process.
It costs a lot to turn on that last power plant each day to meet demand, and you are that demand. On top of this, renewable energy is delivered on Mother Nature’s schedule, not yours. Wind is often cranking at night, and solar is on when it’s sunny, but there are gaps in between. It’s complex, but with new information technology, you can make an informed decision about whether you need to use power during the time period when that last natural-gas-peaker plant needs to turn on to meet your needs. You have options, and saving money using clean energy is one of them.
The Wind Number is a patent pending method of reducing energy costs by using more clean energy and less fossil fuels. The Wind Number is the ratio of power coming from wind over fossil fuels. Your Home’s Wind Number is dependent on the time of day when you draw power from the electric grid. All of the smart home technologies like solar, wifi-enabled thermostats and smart devices, LED lighting, and electric vehicles have the potential to decrease your home’s energy consumption during peak hours. People don’t go to the gas station to fuel their electric vehicle, but can take clean energy a step further by charging their car when mother nature is meeting their energy needs with solar and wind power, rather than charging during peak hours when that last natural gas plant needs to turn on to fuel their battery. Clean energy costs less. Moreover, every home has the ability to use more clean energy by flipping the light switch, using the delay button on the appliances, turning off the HVAC fan, or anything else that reduces power consumption during those 2-3 hours a day when those last dirty power plants need to crank up to meet your demand. The messaging system associated with the Wind Number informs our Users when energy is cleaner.
Our website now shows energy consumers when energy is cleanest and costs are lowest. The Wind Number is the ratio of power coming from Wind over Fossil Fuels. Wind Numbers are highest between 11 pm and 5 am each night, and lowest between the hours of 7 and 9 am, and 5 and 9 pm. Solar power also increases the Wind Number by decreasing fossil fuel consumption during the middle of the day. Using wind power is a breeze once you see when energy is cleanest. As individuals make the switch to clean energy, it will help mitigate the rising tides associated with global warming. Using Wind Power Sabreez.