How to Reduce Energy Use — Starting at Home

How to Reduce Energy Use — Starting at Home |

The world watched a few weeks ago as President Trump announced the United States would be pulling out of the Paris Climate Agreement. This decision spurred many, including myself, to consider how they could better help the environment within their homes and communities.

It’s important for each of us to share in the responsibility of reducing our carbon footprint and it’s as simple as starting in our own home.

Reduce Energy Use in the Home

Making sure your home is insulated and sealed will help save energy as well as money on your energy bill. Find out if your state offers any incentives for insulating your home.

Smart home accessories and programmable thermostats are a simple way to help people use their heaters and air conditioners only when they really need it. Another way to make an impact, upgrade any older appliances to an Energy Star appliance for better efficiency. Additionally, you may be entitled to various incentives. You can find out by going to the Energy Star website.  Switch out your lightbulbs for LED bulbs, just make sure you properly dispose of any used lightbulbs. And finally, if you are able to make the investment, adding solar panels can save you a considerable amount of money over the years.

Reduce Waste

It doesn’t stop inside the house, let’s hit the outside too. If you haven’t started already, it’s time to start composting!  And if you’re wondering just how to start, check out Composting 101 for a simple guide to get you going. Many neighborhoods have community gardens where everyone grows their own fruits and vegetables. Buying your produce from locally growers is a good way to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

My parents grew up in the Great Depression and growing up we were not allowed to waste food. Period!  Little did we know back then that we were helping the environment. Wasting food is not only throwing money away, but think about what it took to get those vegetables or meats into our refrigerator. Fortunately, there are several things you can do to prevent wasting food.

One of the easiest ways to help the environment is to recycle. Most of us are pretty good about recycling paper but there are a lot of recyclable items that end up in the trash. Take a few minutes to understand what can be recycled and which bin it goes in.

By avoiding driving during rush-hour and sitting in traffic, you will not only save your sanity but you will reduce your carbon footprint. Take advantage of apps like Waze that will lead you to the road less traveled!

The U.S. Department of Energy offers a Home Energy Savers guide and calculator to help consumers save energy and in turn, save money.