A few communications ago I wrote about the energy consumption of different cars. I thought I would try and give some perspective to this. Now, I haven’t done the mathematics at this point and so will be writing this as I go. I don’t know what the results are going to be.

My car, Bora Horza Gobuchul, uses 50 kWh of energy, roughly, every 100 km I drive. Given that my insurers believe I drive about 10,000 miles per year that’s a grand total of:

8000 kWh per year

Let’s see how much this costs in fuel alone. 10,000 miles is about 200 gallons of petrol, which gives, at prices of £1.20 per litre, £1,080 per year on fuel alone.

I have a small Victorian house. While it is small it has poor thermal efficiency. It has brick-thick walls with no cavity insulation and is draughty. I do have a chimney balloon in one of the chimneys and the other is boarded up. The bathroom and kitchen stick out the back and are cold all year.

A Year’s Energy

I use gas for heating, hot water and hob cooking. I use electricity for some heating and then appliances and light. As the graph above shows I used 10.5 MWh of energy in the house last year [assuming the meters are correctly calibrated]. This cost me £840 for the year.

So, loosely speaking, the amount of energy I have used to transport me and a 1.5 tonne car around is about 30% more than that I’ve used to live in my home. Considering the time I spend in the car is minimal compared to my house this seems a poor deal. Granted, my car moves around relative to the Earth but this just goes to show how much energy is needed for transportation.

The costs turn up the following figures for comparison:

House £0.08 per kWh
Car £0.135 per kWh

I think it’s time to start voting Green. We also need to start a massive system to change societies need for personal, inefficient transport. There needs to be a cultural change and it needs to start now. It’ll take 20 years to change behaviours and it’s quite likely already too late.