Easy ways to save energy
It's really easy to do your bit! Here's a whole list of things you can do to save energy and water which will help to reduce the harmful CO2 emissions that contribute to global warming.
Even better, they will help to save cash too!
1. Turn off lights when you leave a room
This will save 25kg of CO2 each year for each room and help keep bills and rents down. If it’s sunny enough, why not turn them off anyway? And….why not encourage this sort of thing in lecture rooms – maybe remind the lecturer at the end of the lecture…
2. Turn off TVs, stereos, computers and other equipment instead of switching them to standby.
Britons waste the equivalent of around two power stations' worth of electricity each year by leaving TV sets and other gadgets on standby – you could reduce this amount by turning gadgets off at the plug
3. Turn off your chargers
Most mobile phone chargers continue to draw electricity even when the phone isn't plugged into it. If your mobile phone charger is plugged in all the time, it is the equivalent in CO2 emissions of driving a petrol car for 130 miles. The same applies to your other electronic equipment – like laptops, iPods and digital cameras. Unplug them when they are not in use.
4. Take a brisk shower, not a leisurely bath, to save hot water
A five minute shower uses 35 litres of water, compared to a bath that uses 80 litres – this can save over 300 litres of water a week (beware though, power showers can use more hot water than a bath).
5. Only put the amount of water you need in the kettle when you are making a hot drink
If you fill a kettle full (8 cups) it will take around 10 minutes to boil and if you calculate this for the full year, it will cost you £58.40 per year just to run your kettle. If you were to just fill the kettle for 2 cups each time you boiled it, it would only take around 2 minutes to boil, if you calculate this for the full year it will cost you £11.68.
6. Turn the tap off
By leaving the water running while you brush your teeth, you can waste 150 gallons of water per month—that's 1,800 gallons a year! Turning the water off while you brush can save several gallons of water per minute.
7. Shut it!
Keep windows and doors closed where possible when the heating is on. If you’re too hot then turn the radiator
down. If you’re always too hot report it as the heating may be faulty. Draw your curtains at dusk to keep the heat in. And if it’s
cold why not put on that nice jumper you got for Xmas…..
8. Refuse plastic carrier bags, or at least re-use them.
Every week each person uses an average of 9 plastic carrier bags, each one of these plastic bags is made from petrochemicals (oil and gas) and takes 500 years to decay in a landfill site. The 5p carrier bag charge has gone a long way in reducing the amount but people are still using them. Cloth bags are much better – they’re reusable, sturdy and stylish and they won’t split on you.
9. Find that boiler
If you’re renting a house, find out where the heating and hot water come from and what sort of controls
they have (e.g. a time clock) – does it really all need to be on all the time? If in doubt ask your nice friendly landlord how it works and ask him to add a programmable timer if there isn’t one.
10. Drink tap water
Instead of buying water in plastic bottles and ending up with lots of empty bottles, consider refilling a reusable bottle.
11. Cook for friends
It may (or may not!) help to increase your popularity! Also, large quantities of food use less packaging than the same quantity in individual portions and take less time (and energy) to cook.
12. Reduce, reuse and recycle.
Buy rechargeable batteries, print/write on both sides of paper, re-use envelopes, and register with the mailing preference service to stop junk mail: www.mpsonline.org.uk/mpsr/.
Think before you bin anything. Use the local council's recycling scheme to dispose of paper, glass and plastics.
13. Buy local, fresh food
This way, energy is not wasted on transportation. Fresh food uses less packaging (and it tastes nicer and is better for you). Frozen food uses 10 times more energy to produce.
14. Use public transport
Use shared public transport wherever possible or if you must drive, try to share any car journeys with friends, or make new ones at carshare.com Walk or cycle as much as you can – it’ll help keep you fit as well as well as saving cash and reducing pollution.
15 . Report any dripping taps or leaks.
A dripping tap can waste up to 140 litres of water a week (enough for 4 showers!). Make sure it gets fixed and you’ll be helping the environment. Also report any energy wastage that could be changed – e.g. lights left on in unused areas.
16. Wash your clothes with your flatmates’ instead of wasting water on half-empty loads.
Alternatively, use the half-load or economy programme if your machine has one. Also, remember that modern detergents work just as well at low temperatures – 40-50°C is fine.