Climate Change | Electric Vehicles | Energy | ZEB Story

Seb Crangle – Ocean Shores

Mowing the lawn with an electric mower - charged by the sun

I recently joined the fabulous Library of STUFF Mullumbimby, motivated by being able to share useful equipment without us all needing to own it all separately. Of particular interest to me was the electric lawn mower because I wanted to "mow electric"😁, rather than use my polluting, petrol-powered lawnmower, and to charge the batteries from our rooftop solar. Even if you don't have solar, it's generally cleaner and cheaper to use electrical power rather than petrol, as is the case with electric vs ICE vehicles.

The mower was great to use - so easy to start, and so quiet.
And, because I am a self-confessed energy geek🤓, I was very interested to work out how much energy it used to mow our back yard. So, for those who share my affliction, here the math:

We have a small back yard, aprox 10m x 6m, which I mowed twice over a few weeks = total of 120m2 of mowing
I then charged the mower's batteries at a time when I knew my solar was exporting to the grid, and used an energy meter device to measure how much energy it took to charge them. The result was 0.12 kWh.
That amount of energy would cost me 3 cents to buy from the grid, with a standard energy tariff of 27c/kWh and because I'm fortunate enough to have solar PV, the value of that energy (to me) actually is more like half a cent (0.66 cents). That's based on the FIT that I get for most of the solar I export to the grid.

That's pretty cheap... 😀 AND its renewable energy, unlike the dirty petrol mower I was using before.
That's a good outcome I reckon!

But now my quandary is: in order to borrow the mower from the Library of Stuff I have to drive my diesel-powered van into Mullum... 🤦‍♂️ Until I can afford to have my own EV, I'm at least trying to make the trip into Mullum multi-purpose, and plan ahead to borrow multiple items from the library.

Seb

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