10 Simple Things You Can Do To Fight Climate Change
Feeling a bit out of control these days? We hear you. This Energy Awareness Month (October), let’s get some easy wins for ourselves – and bonus – help the planet and save some money too. Do one or do them all, just make sure you pat yourself on the back.
- Wash your clothes in cold water and hang to dry. When washing your clothes in hot water, water heating can account for up to 90% of energy usage! By washing in cold water, you’ll still have clean clothes while saving a lot of energy. Hang dry for even bigger savings.
- Use advanced power strips. Even when they’re turned off, electronics like your computer, cable box and speakers still drain energy if they’re plugged in. These “vampire” loads can be prevented by unplugging electronics that you’re not using or by using advanced power strips that shut off power for you.
- Set your water heater on a timer. One of the biggest ways we use electricity in our home is water heating. But by setting your water heater on a timer, you’ll save it from heating water when you’re not using it – like at night. Why pay to heat water that you’re not even using?
- Swap all your lightbulbs to LEDs. One of the easiest ways to save energy is switching to LED lightbulbs, which can last 25x longer and use 75% less energy than incandescent bulbs. Check out our online marketplace for great discounts and flat-rate shipping on bulbs.
- Set your thermostat higher. Turning up the temperature up just a couple of degrees won’t feel noticeable, but will lead to big savings in energy and money! The smaller the difference between the indoor and outdoor temperatures, the lower the energy use (and your overall cooling bill) will be. Alternatively, save even more by using fans or open windows instead of AC.
- Clean or replace your air filters. The longer you leave your filters in place, the more dust and other pollutants clog it, decreasing efficiency. Clean or change your air filters every 90 days not only to help your AC system operate more efficiently, but to ensure cleaner air in your home too!
- Shorten your showers to 5 minutes or less. With water heating being one of the biggest energy users in our home, cutting back shower time can have a big impact! By shaving off just 3 minutes a day, you’d save nearly 500 lbs of CO2 in a year! Hawai'i Energy even has a shower song playlist for a fun and easy way to keep your showers in check.
- Don’t set your fridge colder than necessary. Between 37-40°F is best for the fridge, and 0-5°F for the freezer. In addition, make sure your fridge is placed away from windows, stoves, and ovens so that heat from the sun or cooking appliances doesn’t cause it to use more energy to stay cool.
- Stop peeking in the oven. Every time you peek, the temperature drops 25°F and the oven has to use even more energy to bring the temperature back up. Not to mention, your food takes longer to cook!
- Get educated. Even if energy efficiency’s not your thing, there are lots of ways you can channel your passion for sustainability. Check out these awesome local organizations for a start: Blue Planet Foundation, Ulupono Initiative, Kupu Hawaii, Kanu Hawaii, and Bikeshare Hawai'i.
Want even more ideas on actions you can take to save energy? Check out hawaiienergy.com/tips.