Electricity might not directly emit fumes like coal and natural gas, but it still has a big impact on our environment. That’s because, according to the EPA, about 40% of the total energy consumed in the U.S. is used to generate electricity. And while it’s true that a small percentage of electricity is generated from renewable resources like solar, geothermal, and wind power, most of it is generated by burning fossil fuels such as oil, coal, and natural gas.
In celebration of Earth Day on April 22nd, below are some big ways you can cut down on your energy use and reduce your carbon footprint. As a bonus, you’ll be cutting down on your electricity bills, too!
But First: How Does Electricity Use Fossil Fuels?
If you are looking for an electrician in Apex, we’re guessing that it has probably been a long time since you sat in a science classroom and learned how electricity is generated. No problem! Here’s a bit of a refresher. First, the power plant burns the fuel in order to create heat. The heat is then used to create steam, which turns huge turbines and generates electricity. Some power plants use water, wind turbines, nuclear power, or other sources, but less prevalent than those that use fossil fuels. In 2019, natural gas and coal provided 63% percent of U.S. electricity, while 18% came from nuclear power, and 18% came from renewable resources.
So, even though electricity may seem like a very clean power source on the surface, the more you use, the more fossil fuels are being consumed.
How Your Electrician Can Help You Cut Back on Your Electrical Use
Don’t get us wrong: we love electricity. It’s an amazing force that has revolutionized the care and quality of life for millions of people around the globe. With that said, we are also happy to help our clients find ways to reduce their energy consumption. And there are a lot of ways your local electrician can help you do that! Some options include:
- Installing LED lighting everywhere possible. Modern LED lights are much warmer than older versions, and use only a tiny fraction of energy used by regular bulbs (about 75% less!) LEDs also last up to 25 times as long, saving you even more money in the long run.
- Installing ceiling fans can help cool your home using wind power, not air conditioning, cutting your energy costs.
- Installing a programmable thermostat helps you eliminate wasteful energy use when you are away from home. The thermostat adjust itself by a few degrees when you are away.
- Upgrade to energy-efficient appliances. Large household appliances are responsible for roughly 13% of your total household energy use. Although energy-efficient appliances usually have higher up-front costs, their annual operating costs are 9-25% lower than conventional models.
- Drive an electric or a hybrid vehicle. Even though an electric car still consumes fossil fuels indirectly in the way we mentioned above, research has shown that they emit less greenhouse gases and air pollutants over their lifetime than a fuel-burning car, even with electricity generation fuel factored into consideration. Because of this, many states also offer tax incentives for households who switch to electric vehicles! Your local electrician can install an electric vehicle charger in your home garage for easy power-ups.
Ready to Install Energy-Efficient Solutions in Your Home or Business? Call Our Apex Electrician Today!
If you would like to install energy-saving solutions in your commercial or residential Apex property, call Alternate Current Solutions today. Our skilled electricians can safely and securely install ceiling fans, LED lighting, electric vehicle chargers, and more. We can also perform an energy audit of your home to determine where you are expending the most energy. For a free service estimate, please contact us here!