For many decades, more than half of all residential energy use went to heating and cooling our homes. In recent years we’ve seen that number come down thanks to more efficient equipment, better insulation, more energy efficient windows and energy conservation minded customers. Yet, at the same time we’ve seen energy consumption for heating and cooling decline, energy use for appliances and electronics continues to rise, increasing the total amount of energy needed to meet residential electricity demand.
Considering all the devices that we use daily – computers, televisions, microwaves, appliances and more – it should come as no surprise that each of us is responsible for increased energy consumption. The United States represents 19% of the world’s total energy consumption, and each person in the U.S. uses an average of 312 million British Thermal Units (BTU) of energy a year – equivalent to burning 312 million matches, or 850,000 matches every day! The U.S. isn’t alone in increased energy use. World energy consumption, led by Asia, is estimated to increase by over 50 percent in the next three decades.
A BTU is a unit of measurement used to calculate energy consumption, with one BTU approximately equal to the amount of energy needed to burn one wooden match.
Our energy use is the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S. Greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide accumulating in the earth’s atmosphere cause the earth to warm up, resulting in changes in climatic patterns. The environmental impact resulting from climate change is multi-faceted and can be seen in rising seas, temperature extremes, violent storms and more – all of which, in turn, affect how we produce, deliver and consume energy.
As your energy supplier, we have a special role to play in efforts to curb these potentially devastating climate effects. To this end, we have established Energy Savings Programs to help our customers begin to work with us on this important issue.
Together, we can help address the complex issues related to climate change and the increasing demand for energy through energy conservation, energy efficiency improvements and increased use of renewable energy. If we all play our part, we can ensure that future generations can enjoy clean air, reliable energy, and a healthy environment.
There are many easy ways to save energy and lower your monthly bills. You can read the energy tips below and download the Helpful Ways to Save brochure for Atlantic City Electric for even more energy saving tips.
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, household appliances account for about 13% of your home’s total energy cost. When purchasing new appliances, it’s important to consider not just the purchase price, but also the appliance’s operating cost. The federal government now requires appliance manufacturers to display bright yellow and black EnergyGuide labels to help consumers calculate the full cost of each appliance. EnergyGuide contains key information such as yearly operating cost and yearly electricity consumption that can help you purchase the most energy efficient – and ultimately money-saving – appliance.
ENERGY STAR is a set of energy efficiency standards originally established in 1992 by the Environmental Protection Agency to help consumers identify products that have superior energy efficiency. The ENERGY STAR label is now used on everything from appliances to home heating and cooling equipment, home electronics to lighting and new homes. The label has become a highly respected badge of energy conservation. The program is credited with helping American consumers save $11.5 billion annually on utility bills, showing that energy efficiency is both environmentally and wallet-friendly.
The ENERGY STAR label guarantees a product that meets, and usually exceeds, the minimum federal standards for efficiency and quality. For example, ENERGY STAR washing machines use about 20% less energy than standard machines. So next time you’re shopping for new appliances or electronics, installing a new water heather or HVAC unit, or thinking of doing some home improvements, look for the ENERGY STAR label on certain products and materials – it’s an easy way to save energy and save money.
Parents may be the ones paying the monthly utility bills, but kids can help reduce a home’s energy consumption. Follow these energy saving tips so you can lower your energy use and begin protecting our planet:
Inefficient incandescent light bulbs are still used in 70% of sockets in the U.S. As of January 1, 2014 incandescent bulbs will no longer be manufactured. With the average household devoting 6% of its total energy use to lighting, replacing these traditional bulbs you may still be using with longer-lasting, energy efficient lighting is a quick way to start conserving energy.
Look for these popular energy efficient light bulbs at your local hardware store:
Adding dimmers, timers, and motion sensors to your lighting fixtures can also go a long way towards reducing energy usage. And when possible, keep curtains and blinds open to allow natural daylight to do the lighting work for you.
The federal government now requires light blub packaging to include a Lighting Facts label allowing consumers to more accurately compare bulbs. These black and white labels, similar to the EnergyGuide labels on appliances, contain important information such as annual energy cost, lifespan, brightness, energy usage and light warmth to help you choose the most appropriate and cost-effective bulb for your home or business.