Electricity is the biggest generator of greenhouse gasses in Australia, so we need to do our bit to cut back electricity use where we can. So what can you do?
Make the Change to Green Power
Green Power is where your electricity supplier must buy an equivalent amount of energy from new renewable sources, effectively making your home carbon neutral. It will add a few dollars to your electricity bill, but you can recoup this with a few energy-efficiency measures. Check out the Green Power site at www.greenpower.com.au
Choose Energy Efficient, Environmentally Friendly Lightbulbs
Compact fluorescent lightbulbs can pay for themselves in a year, lasting up to 10 times longer than standard bulbs and will save more than 66% in lighting costs during their lifetime. Low voltage halogen down lights and feature lights will often use as much energy as incandescent lamps. Replacing halogen and feature lights with LED lamps can be up to 10-times more efficient.
Turn Off Lights and Heating When Not Really Needed
Instead, consider insulators like carpets and rugs, double-glazing and full-length thermal-lined curtains. You will quickly notice the difference, both in comfort and cost. To help, BellyBelly has these great downloadable labels which you can print and stick to light and electricity switches, as well as placing them on your monitors – at home, at work – anywhere where greenhouse gasses are at work. Click here to download your label sheet in PDF format.
Consider the Energy Consumption of a New TV Prior to Purchase
A small LCD TV will use only 60 watts whereas a large plasma can use around 450 watts. The larger the screen, the more watts it will use.
Set Your Hot Water Cylinder to 60 Degrees Celsius
This is the minimum recommended storage temperature. Insulating pipes and locating your hot water system as close as you can to hot water outlets (e.g. kitchen and bathroom) will make more energy efficient use of your hot water supply.
- Fit draft excluders to drafty windows and doors
- Shut doors so you only heat or cool the rooms you are using.
- Turn off appliances at the wall when you're not using them – standby uses five per cent of household energy.
- In winter, turn down heating and put on a jumper instead.
- Install solar hot water – it will give you free, and carbon-free, hot water and pay for itself in a few years.
- Ensure doors and windows are well fitted and sealed for the cooler months. Open them up in summer to let a cool breeze refresh the air.
- Turn off your sound system and TV at the wall when not in use. Appliances left on standby still use energy.