Watt's It All About?
A lot of the electricity produced in Canada comes from the
burning of non-renewable fossil fuels. As our demand for electricity
increases, so does the rate at which power plants need to burn
these fuels. Burning fossil fuels to produce electricity is
a primary source of greenhouse gas emissions.
- Stop window drafts by caulking gaps or adding weather stripping.
By draft proofing your home with caulking and weather stripping
you can reduce your home heating needs by up to 20% and reduce
GHG emissions by up to a half tonne. You can locate window
drafts (air leakage) by spotting condensation, feeling with
a moistened finger or by using draft detectors (try dangling
a feather or thread to check for air movement from drafts).
- Turn off lights in a room that is not in use.
Turning off one 60-watt bulb for one hour per day when not
needed can save up to 0.19 tonnes a year. The amount of electricity
needed to light a Canadian home results in almost one third
of a tonne of GHGs each year. Why not make a little reminder
note or sign and put it near light switches to remind family
members to turn off the lights.
- Replace standard incandescent light bulbs with compact
florescent light bulbs.
Compact florescent light bulbs last up to ten times
longer and use one quarter of the electricity of a standard
light bulb. Replace 5 standard incandescent light bulbs in
your home with compact florescent light bulbs and you could
reduce your GHG emissions by 1/5 of a tonne.
- Keep the fridge door closed as much as possible.
Check for air leaks around the fridge door and check the
temperature of the fridge, then adjust as necessary.
You can check the door seal of a refrigerator by using
piece of paper. The paper should be held tightly closed door
point around perimeter to see if there are air leaks. However,
the biggest leaks from a fridge occur when you leave it open!
A good idea is to think ahead about what you will be taking
out or putting into the fridge, so that the door is not not
ajar unnecessarily. Take the temperature at its most optimal
efficiency setting, between 1.7 deg C and 3.3 C, adjust accordingly.
- For every 1 degree C you lower
your thermostat, you save 2% on your heating bill. Consider
setting your house thermostat at 22 degrees Celsius or
lower during the day and 18 degrees C or less at nighttime.
Any changes in the thermostat setting should only
be done with the supervision of an adult. A reduction of
Celsius at night or when you are away during the day can
reduce you GHG's by half a tonne. A programmable thermostat
makes this easier to control.
- Turn off the computer when it is not in use or at the end
of the day
Ensure your computer system is set up to use its energy-saver
option, which can save you 1/20 tonnes. Turning off a computer
at night can save up to 0.2 tonnes. If you have the choice,
use a laptop computer instead of a desktop computer because
it can use up to 90% less energy.
- Take advantage of window coverings and curtains to save
During the summer, keep blinds, curtains and windows closed
to help keep your home cooler. Consider keeping curtains
open during winter days will allows passive solar energy
into your home while closing the curtains in the evening
helps keep out the cold air.
- Make certain that weather stripping on doors is in good
Locate door drafts by using a draft detector, a feather or
tissue strip attached to a tooth pick. Caulking or weather
stripping around doors can reduce energy costs.
Let’s go to element 2 – and
become a water spy!
Small actions add up to make a TONNE of difference!