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Dang it Dori: Why is Puget Sound Energy giving people new refrigerators?

Want a new refrigerator? Puget Sound Energy is glad to give you one in place of your old energy hog. And that's got some people saying "Dang It Dori." (AP image)

Want a new refrigerator? Puget Sound Energy is glad to give you one. And that’s got some people saying “Dang It Dori.”

In the latest installment of Dori Monson’s new feature that gives listeners the soapbox, Brian in Redmond wonders why Puget Sound Energy is offering free replacements.

“Dang it Dori, next time Puget Sound Energy says they need to hike our rates this is why: free refrigerators for all,” Richard complained.

So Dori got PSE’s energy expert Dennis Rominger on the line to explain what’s going on.

“You’re buying somebody else’s refrigerator because we’re all working together to save ourselves energy,” Rominger said.

There’s a big catch. PSE is only replacing the worst of the old energy hogs. They have to be at least 20-years-old, in working condition, and still in use in the kitchen.

We all save money in the long run because the energy savings mean fewer power plants, substations and transmission lines, PSE claims. And Rominger said that means lower rates for everyone.

“They just need an extra nudge to make them finally get these old energy hogs off the grid.”

PSE estimates a new energy-efficient refrigerator can save up to $200 a year in energy costs.

But Dori isn’t buying it. He wants to know why we have to pay for other people to get a nice new appliance at our expense.

“Why not a zero interest loan to them and make them pay?” said Dori.

Dori tried to talk Rominger out of a new refrigerator to replace his aging freezer out in the garage. Sadly, it doesn’t make the cut.

“I’m still annoyed by this because I know that if I’m buying somebody a free refrigerator and they just have more money for their iPhone,” Dori complained.

But at least PSE is willing to take Dori’s old freezer, recycle it for free, and give him $50 towards a new energy-efficient model.

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