17 July 2008

How To Save The World

Treehugger reports that David MacKay of the Cambridge University physics department has identified what he considers the eight most important things to do to reduce power consumption. He's written about this in detail in his book Sustainable Energy - Without the Hot Air, available for free download here.

Here are MacKay's Eight:

1. Put on a woollen sweater and turn down your heating’s thermostat (to 69 or 72 degrees, say). Put individual thermostats on all radiators. Make sure the heating’s off when no-one’s at home. Do the same at work.
Could save: 20 kWh per day

2. Read all your meters (gas, electricity, water) every week, and identify easy changes to reduce consumption (e.g., switching things off). Compare competitively with a friend. Read the meters at your place of work too, creating a perpetual live energy audit.
Could save: 4 kWh per day

3. Stop flying.
Could save: 35 kWh per day

4. Drive less, drive slower, drive more gently, use an electric car, join a car club, cycle, walk, use trains and buses.
Could save: 20 kWh per day

5. Keep using old gadgets (e.g. computers); don’t replace them early.
Could save: 4 kWh per day

6. Change lights to fluorescent or LED.
Could save: 4 kWh per day

7. Don’t buy clutter. Avoid packaging.
Could save: 20 kWh per day

8. Eat vegetarian, six days out of seven.
Could save: 10 kWh per day

Treehugger's report on this estimates that besides all the kilowatt hours saved, this could save you more than $7000 a year.

Now, if I could just stop blogging and shut off my computer, I could save even more energy.