ENERGY STAR Earth Day Tips ENERGY STAR Earth Day Tips

Courtesy of Energy Star
The Environmental Protection Agency is launching a year-long "Change the World: Start with Energy Star" campaign. The EPA is asking consumers to pledge to take steps to reduce their carbon footprint and combat climate change. These steps include replacing at least one light with an energy-efficient compact fluorescent light and choosing Energy Star-rated products when replacing appliances. Individuals can take the pledge online at: www.energystar.gov/changetheworld. To celebrate the launch of the campaign ENERGY STAR sent over some tips to help you reduce your footprint:

Change your lights: ENERGY STAR-qualified lighting provides bright, warm light, but uses at least 2/3 less energy than standard lighting, generates 70 percent less heat and lasts up to ten times longer. To save the most energy and money, replace your most used fixtures or the light bulbs in them with energy-efficient models. If every household in the U.S. replaced their five most frequently used lights, we would prevent greenhouse gases equivalent to the emissions from nearly 10 million cars.

Green your home: The first step to a green home is using energy efficiently. The energy we use in our homes often comes from the burning of fossil fuels at power plants, which contributes to smog, acid rain and global warming. The less energy we use in our homes, the less greenhouse gases we create. Check out ENERGY STAR @ Home and the ENERGY STAR Home Advisor at energystar.gov for tips on how to seal up your home, heat and cool your home efficiently and use programmable thermostats to save energy. And while on the ENERGY STAR Web site, enter your utility bills into the Home Energy Yardstick to see how your home's efficiency 'measures up' to others in your area.

Use green power: Green power is environmentally friendly electricity that is generated from renewable energy sources such as wind and the sun. By choosing green power, you’re supporting the development of renewable energy sources, which reduces the burning of fossil fuels like coal, oil and natural gas that produce greenhouse gas emissions. Visit epa.gov/greenpower for more information.

Look for the ENERGY STAR where you work, play, shop and learn: Products in more than 50 categories, from refrigerators to DVD players, qualify for the ENERGY STAR. These labeled products use less energy, save money and help protect the environment. ENERGY STAR-qualified products incorporate advanced technologies that use 10–50 percent less energy and water than standard models. Buildings across the country from supermarkets, schools, hotels, hospitals and office buildings can also earn the government's ENERGY STAR. These buildings are the best in the nation for energy performance and use, on average, 35 percent less energy than other buildings. Learn more at energystar.gov/buildings.

Know your carbon footprint: We all contribute to global warming every day. Calculating your personal output of greenhouse gas emissions is the first step toward making improvements. You may be surprised to see how leaving the lights on affects your carbon footprint. Even if you can’t carpool every day, you can still cut your carbon footprint by making improvements around your home. Visit epa.gov/climatechange to get started.

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