Last week the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change issued a terrifying report on our current climate crisis, possibly more of a prognosis than an update. With this new information comes responsibility, and action is required. Not only is it up to the collective to make sustainable lifestyle choices, its up to the individual to examine their lifestyle and be honest with themselves about ways they can improve. In our Environmental Series, we will look at various aspects of home design and how they relate to our carbon footprint, energy costs and sustainability.
Did you know that the average household only needs about 35% of the annual electricity they use? With an average annual spend of $1,368.36 (Visual Capitalist) on electricity per household, that means that we spend approximately $890 USD more than necessary on power.
For the purpose of both your finances and the environment, lets look at ways to reduce unnecessary energy costs at home.
Something to consider before diving into this infographic is the term “vampire appliance” – a vampire appliance or electronic is one that continues to use energy even when it’s not in direct use. These are things like printers, heating furnaces, games and consoles, DVR systems, televisions and microwaves. It is best to turn these appliances off completely when they’re not being used, instead of leaving them idle or “asleep.”
This infographic from Connect4Climate shows the breakdown of energy use in a single family home.
According to the graphic above, below are the biggest energy consumers in your home.
- Cooling and heating: 47% of energy use
- Water heater: 14% of energy use
- Washer and dryer: 13% of energy use
- Lighting: 12% of energy use
- Refrigerator: 4% of energy use
- Electric oven: 3-4% of energy use
- TV, DVD, cable box: 3% of energy use
- Dishwasher: 2% of energy use
- Computer: 1% of energy use
Now more than ever it is important for us to make smart, conscious consumer choices. We must make adjustments to our standard lifestyles in an effort to preserve the sanctity of our environment for the generations to come, and it all starts at home.
Stay tuned for our next article on the importance of steel and sustainability.