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What is energy conservation?

3 min read

Living a “Green Life” can conjure up several images in people’s minds. Many might picture blue bins along their street where they put their recyclables. It may include more efficient and sustainable energy sources, such as solar or wind power. And for some it may mean changing their diet to exclude meat, hoping to contribute to the reduction of dangerous bi-products caused by demands on the farming industry.

Many people put their version of green living neatly into one of these little boxes and have a healthy routine of contributing in their way. But many don’t realize that “green living” is more of a system rather than any one practice. It’s about putting all these things together to make a really big change. And one of the most important elements is energy conservation.

And one of the best ways we can improve our use of energy is to decrease the demand for it. But energy conservation isn’t always the first thing that comes to mind. While I’ve made it a habit to turn off the lights around the house and to avoid water waste, energy conservation goes far beyond that and can be a major tool in decreasing the demand. And it has the added benefit of reducing the power you consume from your utility, which means more savings.

Energy conservation is any effort to make your energy go further. Every step you make to waste less is part of this process. And with conservation-focused design, the effects can be far-reaching. Even the concerns of power generation limitations fade away because we simply will not need as much power to keep up with our needs.

So you may wonder what are the steps you can take to start conserving your power. Here are just a few:

Choose your stove burner wisely.

Many people simply put on the pan and turn up the heat, but even using a burner that is slightly too large allows much of the heat to escape up the sides of the pot rather than actually cooking your food. Use a burner that matches your pot.

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Fill your washers

Make your dishwasher and washing machine more efficient by filling them before running them. They do the same work for a full load of dishes as for half a load, so get more from your power by utilizing all that space. Be conscious of your machines limit though. Pushing it can cause damage.

Use LED bulbs

LED’s can be more expensive than a traditional incandescent bulbs. Though they may seem pricier, LEDs last much longer and will save you more in the long run.

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Use Smart Power strips

Idle Electronics will still pull power from your home. You can prevent this with smart power strips that will shut down unused electronics, making sure you don’t draw energy you’re not using.

Seal any leaks

Your energy might be escaping your home through subtle cracks where the door or window meets the wall. Check all openings in your house and seal up any loose exits with some calk.

Hotter Summers, Cooler Winters

Get comfortable with temperatures a bit outside your current routine. You can save a lot of energy by making sure your AC system does not work so hard. Opt for a blanket instead of the extra heating and utilize your heat during winters by doing the previous step.

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Making simple changes to your life will make any other green living step you take go even further. By focusing on the system as a whole and building that into our future home designs and current practices, the positive impact we have on the earth is going to make a major difference much sooner.

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