Reducing greenhouse gas emissions isn’t just about installing solar panels on your roof or buying an electric car. While some actions to reduce your carbon footprint are too costly for most, saving energy is certainly something that everyone can do. There are many ways to save energy, and they range from making small investments on energy-efficient lightbulbs and appliances to simply adjusting some habits. In this post, DOER staff members share what they do personally to save energy. We hope to inspire Energy Smarts readers to do the same.
“I reduced my energy bill by 35% when I super-insulated my roof in 2009. On average I drive less than 3 miles a day.” – Lawrence Masland, Energy Efficiency Planner
“I bike to and from work every day. I use window wrap or covering on all of my windows during the winter to mitigate heat loss. I compost all excess food waste, and I use power strips on all my appliances or electronics to prevent usage waste.” – Edward Dobbin, Clean Energy Fellow
“I recycle! Paper, plastic, metal, glass – you name it, it gets a second life. I try to buy locally-grown produce to reduce the energy used to get food to the table. I drive a Prius….and keep it on Eco-Mode.” – Lisa Capone, Green Communities Deputy Director
“I moved recently and was really surprised that all the bulbs in my new place were incandescent. I have changed all but one light to LEDs (I like the quality of light much better than CFLs) including overhead fixtures and lamps. I seldom use the one light that hasn’t changed.” – Eileen McHugh, Green Communities Municipal Programs Coordinator
“We superinsulated our house with interior and exterior foam, and only CFLs and LEDs and ENERGY STAR® appliances are installed in our home. I commute by express bus and walk to and from home and work stops. Our kids walk to school every day, regardless of the weather.” – Eric Friedman, Leading By Example Director
“When our town, Sudbury, joined the Solarize Mass program, we put an 8.5 kW solar electric array on our roof. During the sunnier months, it’s great not having to write a check to our electric utility. We paid a relatively small amount up front and spend nothing for the power generated by the solar system. When I park at the commuter rail station, regardless of the temperature, I never idle.” – Tom Witkin, Marketing & Collaboration Coordinator
“I walk or bike to friends’ houses who live nearby instead of driving. I turn off all lights when leaving a room and I unplug my phone charger and computer charger from their outlets when I’m not using them.” – Katherine Kyrios, Marketing Intern
“I bike to work. I unplug electronics when not in use. I keep my heat low – sometimes wear hats to bed in the winter, as I sleep better in the cold. I talk with friends and family about energy issues and ways to save.” – Ben Pignatelli, Energy Efficiency Analyst
“I use a power strip with a switch to turn off plugged-in appliances. When I stay at a hotel, I turn the A/C off (or heat down if in the winter) before leaving for the day. I also always use the Do Not Disturb sign so that housekeeping doesn’t change the sheets and towels.” – XiaoZhi Lim, Marketing Intern
“I ride my bike or walk everywhere I need to go in the city. I turn off the AC or heat before leaving home every morning. I use canvas bags or my backpack when I go to the grocery store. I use energy efficient light bulbs in my home.” – Emma Krause, Rooftop Solar Challenge Coordinator
“I take public transportation to work every day. I walk to and from the T station every day. I had an energy audit performed on my home through the Mass Save® program. As a result of the audit, I added additional attic insulation, eave-space and knee wall insulation, and increased roof ventilation. I replaced all incandescent bulbs in my home with either CFL or LED bulbs. I reduced my household waste by more than 70% by improving my composting and recycling practices.” – Charlie Tuttle, Emerging Clean Energy Technology Specialist
“I changed all my lightbulbs to energy-saving LEDs. My washer, dryer and refrigerator are all ENERGY STAR®-rated appliances. I walk to work.” Chantavy Sor, Budget Administrator
“I picked up a Community Supported Agriculture share to support local agriculture. I ride a bike to work.” – Bram Claeys, Renewable Policy Director
We hope Energy Smarts readers will be able to pick up some ideas to save energy in your lives too. For more ideas, visit the Mass Save® website. Every energy saving action, no matter how small, adds up and makes a difference.
Women Shaping the Agenda in Energy and the Environment posted on Jul 28
I joined the Department of Energy Resources (DOER) as an intern in the Renewable Energy Division at the start of the summer. As a recent graduate, one of my main internship goals has been not only to learn about the energy industry and policy, but …Continue Reading Women Shaping the Agenda in Energy and the Environment
Getting Started and Gaining Insight into Energy Storage posted on Jul 14
I joined the Department of Energy Resources (DOER) team a few months ago and, as you might imagine, have been introduced to a mountain of new information. Before I joined DOER, I had a very general understanding of what the department actually did for the …Continue Reading Getting Started and Gaining Insight into Energy Storage
Leading By Example Earns EPA Award posted on Jun 16
This spring, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s New England Office chose this historic hall to recognize bold action and innovation of a different kind. It recognized Massachusetts state government’s Leading by Example (LBE) program during a 2015 Earth Day event at Faneuil Hall, awarding LBE a 2015 Environmental Merit Award in the governmental category.