Over the past few decades, innovations have been geared towards being, cheaper, faster, more efficient and portable. At the core of all these technological innovations was energy which has been, and continues to be the power driving the gadgets, appliances and machines. The over emphasis on the cost and portability gradually overshadowed the most integral aspect; energy. For long, the main energy source was from non-renewable sources including fossil fuels. With renewed vigor however, efforts have been made towards sparingly utilizing these sources, finding alternative sources and modifying electrical gadgets to be energy efficient. But does energy consumption reduction and preservation benefit my local city?
Benefits of energy efficiency
There are innumerable reasons that compels both you and me to be energy efficient. The top reasons being;
- Saving the environment
Power generating companies, fuel producing plants and other large industries burn coal and other fossil fuels to produce energy. The gas emissions and resulting by-products at some point are emitted to the environment. To compound this, the source of the fuels is the ever-diminishing reservoirs whose replenishing rate is close to 50 times slower than usage. The causality of both the emission and provision is none other than the environment. Any efforts therefore, to help abate these catastrophic effects against our cities’ environment are but welcome.
The increasing demand for energy has progressively seen ecosystems destroyed, degraded or altered. The fauna and flora that previously called such ecosystems home have as result been forced to migrate, evolve or at worst driven to extinction. Industrial accidents, fires and oil spills have caused unimaginable losses. For the sake of diversity, continuity and aesthetics therefore energy efficiency should be a priority for the human race.
3.Enhancing quality of life
Polluted air, water and poisoned food are the order of the day for most people. This can be traced to emissions from cars, power plants and even oil spills in water bodies. These are but the few examples of the end effects of the pursuit for more and more energy. Were alternative eco-friendly energy sources invented, fresh and pure air, healthy sea foods, reduced industrial related afflictions such as cancer could be the result which in turn, would result to an improved quality of life.
4.It spurs innovation
Needs are the mother of innovation, so they say. With more resources and efforts focused to a green economy and environment in general, creative minds come up with inventions and innovations which create employment, which in turn reduce dependence improving the economy and the overall wellbeing of the population.
Energy efficiency will help you cut down on monthly expenditure on electricity bills both in the workplace and at home. The resultant savings, depending on amount, can be put to good use including paying mortgagees, paying health premiums and even boost business startup capital.
Tips on how to preserve energy
Different cities have in place policies and incentives to initiate and sustain energy saving tendencies. If statistics are anything to go by, the cities that have by far implemented the commendable energy saving tips are the envy of many. Awards and recognition by world renown organizations has had them branded the green cities. Following are tips that you can adapt to help your city rank among the top green cities;
Unplugging electrical appliances when not in use and switching switches contributes to overall saving on energy consumption. Research indicates that, idle and plugged appliances consume about 1% of the total energy they consume when in use.
2.Buy energy efficient gadgets and appliances.
The more the number of the stars the better. They may be costly yes, but that is just the initial purchase price. Cumulatively, the cost of energy spent in the long run raises the cost by a margin of between 5 to 10% more than the energy efficient gadgets. It is therefore more prudent and cost effective to go for the energy efficient gadgets.
3.Make use of natural lighting.
Reduction in dependence of artificial lighting can prove worthwhile especially for large households and commercial units. This may however depend on the light intensity and building orientation. But overall, blinders should be folded to allow for seeping of natural light during the day.
4.Use renewable energy source.
Wind and solar have over time proven to be alternative, reliable, renewable and by far cheaper energy sources. These alternatives if adapted can improve your energy saving efforts, preserve energy and conserve the environment for the well being of the future generations.
5.Insulate water pipes.
Insulation prevents heat leakages and conduction of heat from pipes. This can cut down on the annual energy bills by a minimum of $25 per household.
- Turn off light that isn’t in use
All rooms and alleys that are not in use should have their lights off. Proper timing with as a transition form day night or vice versa should also be closely monitored. If need be, the lighting, if possible should be automated.
7.Timely repair, servicing and repair of fans and coolers.
Well maintained and serviced fans work optimally thereby reducing the energy expenditure. Malfunctioning and obstructed ones on the other hand overwork and overuse energy.
Preserving energy should be a collaborative effort that calls for participation from all stakeholders. Continued awareness, incentives such as tax reliefs for purchase and consequent use, policy implementation and energy efficient technologies are some of the most appropriate ways through which our cities can inch closer to being energy efficient.