What Electricity Sustainability Today Means for the Environment Tomorrow
What usually comes to mind when you hear the word sustainability? You’re not that far off when you think about reducing carbon emissions and renewable fuel resources. But it is more than that. When a sustainable environment is created, social and environmental benefits come in. But how do you achieve sustainability?
Sustainability aims to study the various aspects needed to maintain ecological balance, which includes humans and their daily activities, technology and environmental science, and social sciences and civil engineering. Suffice to say that anyone and everyone can help achieve sustainable development. There are several ways to create a sustainable environment, and the easiest is to implement electricity sustainability at every opportunity.
Reduce energy cost and consumption and save the environment from further damage.
Make that switch from energy-hogging appliances to energy efficient products, such as lights, fans, electric hot water systems, and energy-efficient lighting control systems. Even the use of an energy efficient TV system takes you one step closer to achieving sustainability.
So make that switch. Call TFT Electrical to install energy-efficient products.
Perth Sustainability for Energy Efficient Outcomes
In Perth, environment and sustainability are in the forefront of many community events. So much so that Perth sustainability was created to encourage everyone to participate in local government initiatives related to renewable energy. And everything starts with the electricity sector.
With 87% of electricity coming from coal and gas-fired power stations, the electricity sector in Australia is the largest contributor of greenhouse emissions. Only a number of people have switched to renewable energy, such as hydro, wind and solar power. But this is about to change.
There are now many retailers that invest in renewables, and some smaller, newer companies are taking the same direction. When you invest your money in these companies, you do your share in developing Perth electricity sustainability. This also tells Australian energy companies that you’re serious about climate change, and in creating a Perth environment that cares.
How to Achieve Energy Efficiency in the Home or Office
Reducing energy costs and pollution generated from electricity is the cheapest and quickest way to create a sustainable environment. There are small changes you can do that will make a huge difference, and there are major changes that can be carried out that will result in large scale electricity sustainability.
What do you need to do then?
1. Make that switch
Ditch sentimentality for lower energy consumption and utility bills. Those old refrigerator and TV system that have been handed down from your loving parents or grandparents not only occupies a huge space in your heart, but also that of carbon footprint percentage. Why not immortalise them in your mind, but do pull the plug to give electricity sustainability a chance to flourish and improve the Perth environment? The same thing goes for any old appliances around your home or office.
Here’s a powerful fact – appliances from the 1990s have a higher energy efficiency ratio (EER) that indicates the level of energy consumption. The lower the number, the higher the electricity demand. An old air conditioner, for example, has an EER rating of 10, while modern ones have an EER rating of 7.
Anything that is 20 years old or more is definitely up for an upgrade. When shopping for a replacement, make sure they are energy-star rated. Read the label or ask around. The keyword is energy efficient. Don’t settle for anything else.
2. Employ best practices to save energy at home
Change, as they say, should start at home. So if you want to do your share in Perth sustainability, start saving energy right in your own backyard.
- Turn off the equipment, electronic appliances, and lights when not in use. Better yet, use a programmable lighting system, so you can afford to forget to turn off the lights.
- Switch to a programmable thermostat that will help you easily and efficiently control heating and cooling systems.
- Set your thermostat between 18 and 20 degrees during winter, and set to 26 degrees or above during summer. Avoid setting the temperature above 20 degrees during the cold months, as every degree added is equivalent to 10% increase to your heating bill.
- Unplug home electronics when not in use, as some of them may still use several watts of power while in standby mode.
- Air dry clothes and dishes, instead of using the dryer and a dishwasher’s drying cycle, respectively.
- Wash only full loads of clothes and dishes. Wash clothes in cold water.
- Make sure windows and doors are closed and tightly sealed when heating and cooling your home. This is one way to keep your heating and cooling system from working doubly hard, and eating massive amounts of energy.
- Save as much energy as you can in the kitchen. Use the microwave instead of an electric oven as it consumes less energy. Reduce cooking time by thawing frozen food and keeping the lid on pots while cooking.
In addition, you should wear the right clothes. Funny as it sounds, but failure to dress for the temperature plays a role in how you use electrical appliances and can hamper any efforts on Perth electricity sustainability.
Wearing wool in winter will not only keep you warm, but also encourages you to turn down the heater. It’s common sense, yes. But not everyone uses common sense as they should. And whether you admit it or not, clothes and sustainability may not be something you’d normally connect.
3. Take advantage of renewable energy and sustainability schemes
The City of Perth has adopted the Environment Strategy that supports its growth as a sustainable, healthy, energy resilient and responsive city. There are several programmes that the community can take advantage of to improve the home, office or the city as a whole.
Combine them with government initiatives and you and the rest of the community can enjoy several incentives.
- Renewable Energy Trust (RET): RET encourages the electricity sector to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and continue to find ways to generate electricity from renewable and sustainable resources. It has been recently amended to help ensure the amount of large-scale renewable energy will double by 2020.
- Solar Towns Program: what better way to achieve a sustainable Perth environment than to make it a community effort? Programs, such as Solar Towns, will enable Australian communities to engage with renewable energy at a local level that’ll improve the local environment and community outcomes.
- Solar Communities Program: this program provides the funds to support responses to climate change, and the delivery of low cost electricity for community organisations. Selected regions in Australia will receive funding to install solar hot water, rooftop solar PV and solar-connected Battery Systems.
The Clean Energy Finance Corporation and the National Wind Farm Commissioner round up the Renewable Energy programs of the Australian government.
4. Make your home as energy efficient as possible
Ready to move on to electricity sustainability? Making changes to your home not only improves energy consumption levels, but ensures comfortability as well. Deliberate and systematic management of the indoor environment, can do wonders for your home. It is one way to feel better within the comforts of your home, literally.
Whether you are building a house from scratch or renovating, add energy efficient home components, such as outdoor water barrier, indoor moisture barrier, continuous air barrier, thermal barrier and window system, high efficient heating, low-flow fixtures, and high efficient hot water tank.
You should also follow best practices in home ventilation, which involves calculating the right percentage for space heating, water heating, cooling, lighting and appliances. For example, water heating should only take up 30% of your home’s total energy consumption. Space heating, on the other hand, should only be at 46%. Anything more than this can result in higher energy cost and pollution.
They’re also small changes that you can do to keep your home sustainable, such as adding awnings on windows on the northern side, using double- or triple-glazed windows to let the sun in but without the glare and heat.
It is also important to check that there are no holes or cracks that will allow heat to escape and cold air to penetrate your home during winter, and for the opposite to happen during summer. Any leaks in your home can take a toll on energy consumption.
Sufficient insulation would also go a long way, especially an insulated ceiling. Make sure insulation has the right rating or R-value. In Perth, R-value for insulated ceiling should be at 4.1, and walls at 2.8.
These are just some of the few things you can do to ensure sustainability today and in the future. Most of the information above revolves around electricity sustainability, but there’s plenty more you can do to create a healthier and more energy efficient environment.
Why care for the Perth environment?
Cities are growing rapidly, and the need to reduce their carbon footprint grows with them as well. Perth is no exception. But if the city is to provide a liveable place for humans, while minimising environmental impact, the entire community has to do their share.
The good news is renewable systems are steadily on the rise. According to Curtin University’s Professor of Sustainability, Peter Newman, “There’s now 200 megawatts of (solar panels) on the rooftops of Perth homes”, which is a small step to bigger things. Perth electricity sustainability is definitely here, and will stay with sustained efforts from everyone in the community, including you.
Call TFT Electrical today to help you take the first step to sustainability.