We all need and use energy, but do we realise how much we use?
Take home heating: anyone who deals with the bills knows how dear it is to warm your house.
But how much of the world’s use of energy is used for generating heat?
Do you think it’s 27%, 37%, 47% or 57%?
It’s 47%! Far higher than transportation, which accounts for 27%.
Test yourself more with the National Geographic Home Heating Quiz.
If you want to save energy, reduce your carbon footprint and save money, have a look at National Geographic’s 360º Energy Diet.
You can save energy by cutting down on:
–What you buy and consume
Use less water, gas and electricity, buy more organic products, borrow something instead of buying it new…
Reduce consumption of resource-intensive meat, eat sustainable fish, eat less processed food…
If you need to drive, get rid of unnecessary weight from your car and drive at an even speed to consume less fuel, use public transport whenever you can, invest in a fuel-efficient car…
Lower your thermostat by 2ºC, or increase it during the summer, use energy-saving light bulbs, hang your clothes instead of using a dryer (your clothes will last longer too!)
Give up bottled water for tap water -use filters or Brita taps for extra pure water-, turn off the tap while brushing your teeth and scrubbing dishes, have shorter showers -even 1 minute less in the shower can save a lot!-, use a low-flow shower head, collect water for the garden using a rain barrel…
–Waste disposal and reduction
Keep RRR in mind: Reduce, Reuse and Recycle!
Sending less things to landfill means fewer resources will be used to manage and transport all of it. Recycle all glass, paper, plastic aluminium, batteries and anything else, change to paperless billing, use material or long-lasting reusable bags for your shopping, compost at home, recycle or donate unwanted shoes, clothes, computers and phones and only buy what you really need.
I read a really interesting article on the 10:10 site, the organisation that focuses on cutting carbon emissions 10% at a time and that I previously wrote about regarding their Lighter Later campaign, about a family who got rid of their car in 2010.
Check how they became healthier, shopped more locally and saved a lot of money on the Giving Up The Car case study page.
Also have a look at the Household Energy Saving Booklet for more energy and money-saving tips. It’s incredible how much heating energy is lost through poor insulation.
If you are renting a home, there are useful tips for tenants and landlords on the booklet too.
More links to look at:
10:10 expert advice on how to cut your emissions which includes tips and stories about how councils and hospitals cut their carbon footprint
Berti Investments, A business programme supported by Dragon’s Den’s James Caan which helps UK low-carbon businesses
Energy Bill Revolution Turn carbon taxes into funds to make homes super-energy efficient by signing this petition, what an investment!
Another great site I would like to recommend if you would like to save energy and money and see evident results in a year is a site that my journalist friend, The New Journalist blogger, told me about.
GGT: Going Green today.
Sign up, it only takes a few minutes to complete the initial questionnaire to determine how much energy is used in your home, what kind of light bulbs you use, what devices you use to listen to music, how much you travel, how often you cook at home, how much meat you consume , what sort of water heater you use… when it asks you about your furnace’s filter, it means your central heating system’s boiler (this site is American and I had to look it up as I wasn’t even aware I had a furnace 🙂 )
At the end of the survey you can choose to receive “Green Reminders” posted on your Facebook wall to ease your way into being greener day by day.
You also get a report with the number of steps you could take in a year to be greener. With 58 free steps I could save $5,304 in a year! Great!
It’s also good to see some companies, such as British Gas and their energy App, are making easier for us to monitor our day-to-day energy use.
Whatever you do in life, there’s always a green, sustainable way of doing it.
What are you willing to do in order to save energy and money? Would you consider giving up your car?
What have you already done to save energy and money? Do you have any advice or suggestions?