Energy may go even higher

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one more illustration of income - real disposable income.
(this is already adjusted for inflation). The idea of having a bunch of excess income to play with in the first place is relatively recent. I may expose myself here - but I like guitars - I have 25 of them. I made 7 of them. How is that possible? They're mostly used and disposable income combined with automation in manufacture makes them often the price of a few expensive dinners.

What about guitaring in the late 1950s? Gibson sold something like 150 1959 les paul standards. I could be off by a factor of two. You'd have needed to be well to do to afford one in a first place, and what was available at low cost was junk (like guitars with bent wood tops to not pay for solid wood, or guitars that had tops made of thick rotary sawn veneer instead of dried spruce).

The average person now can get a les paul standard if they want one. In the 1950s, it would've cost more than the average household income for the year. For one guitar.

What's not changed over time? I was born in the 1970s - i vaguely recall the very tail end as a kid because its when I was 3 or 4 years old and started hearing how bad things were becoming. How high prices for everything were, all the while, more cars per household each year, nicer cars, more eating out at restaurants, more TVs, more cable....all the way along.
In March red diesel will no longer be available so transport costs and production costs will be going up. Another price rise in the pipeline. Not mentioned anywhere.
Red diesel will still be available, just not to as many sectors as before…..although I agree that it will result in increased costs.
Another stealth tax, and to be honest, I’m rather surprised that the usual suspects in the media haven’t cottoned on and made a big fuss. I suppose it just goes to show the lapse in journalistic standards along with all the others.
Ok, let's do some "simple arithmetic". Looking at Energy Cost Comparison (10/2021 figures, other similar tables are available) for example, assuming a new oil boiler running at 90% efficiency (i.e. a perfect installation & commission), that's 6.44p and 0.298 kg CO2 per kWh . The efficiency of an oil condensing boiler drops with age to about 80-85% after 10 years (I need to source a definitive reference for that).

The GSHP figures with a COP of 3.5 (not the more typical 4, newest systems are 5) is 6.76p and 0.083 kg CO2 per kWh - this also doesn't take into account Economy 7 which is about half the cost and where many GSHPs (ours included) run the most. GSHP do not lose efficiency with time - after setup, they run at installation efficiency. Oh, and we're 3-phase, which again improves our COP slightly.

So GSHPs are pretty much the same cost/kWh even if you don't take into account Economy 7 (which it's bonkers not to), plus the GSHP produces about 1/4 of the CO2/kWh - again, many GSHP users get their electricity from 100% renewable suppliers (I know we do!), regardless of what you may think of that. We pay 23.97p/kWh day, 14.33p/kWh nights - as our house has mahoosive thermal store slabs between the ground and first floors as well as under the ground floor, most of our GSHP usage is in the night, keeping the slabs up to temperature.

Then, of course, you have the maintenance, or lack of it in the case of a GSHP - we've not needed annual maintenance on our GSHP for 16 years now - a few very minor things have been replaced (a circulation pump for instance - a standard Grundfos unit) and all you need to do is top up the water lost to osmosis (about 2 litres a year) and check that the filters are clean (10 minute job). How much does your oil/gas fired boiler cost annually?
My comparisons would be for ASHP, as GS would be difficult.
We currently pay 3.82p per kWh for gas, compared with 20.2p for electricity. As I said, this may change soon...
We have an admittedly quite old gas boiler, but it is condensing, so supposed to be in the high 90s for efficiency. So according to my calculations, it would cost about 5 times as much to heat the house with electricity. If an ASHP ran at 300%, I'd still be poorer. And of course there's the initial outlay and my limited life expectancy to consider.
I may be missing something, but I always thought economy 7 was a night rate, so I'm not sure how that would help, especially since, as I understand things, economy 7 puts up the daytime rate.
As it happens, I don't think our converted barn is suitable for a heat pump, without extensive modification.
All of which is depressing, as I would love to be greener. We do have solar panels, both for hot water and PV.

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