Energy consumption in the home consists of the use of electricity and for most people either oil, gas, coal or wood for heating and sometimes cooking. Electricity is usually generated by the burning of fossil fuels such as oil, gas or coal. It can also be generated at nuclear or hydro-electric plants. Renewable sources of energy such as solar and wind can be used to generate electricity, but most of the electricity that is used in the United States is generated locally at power plants that burn fossil fuels.
The burning of fossil fuels is a major source of air pollution. The combustion of oil, coal or gas leads to the release of nitrogen dioxide, sulfur dioxide, particulate matter and greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide. Nitrogen dioxide, sulfur dioxide and particulate matter are major components of smog and lead to the formation of acid rain. Carbon dioxide is the gas most often associated with the greenhouse effect which may be contributing to global warming.
The overall goal of the Clean Air Act Amendments is to reduce the pollutants in our air by 56 billion pounds a year224 pounds for every man, woman, and childwhen the law is fully phased in by the year 2005. Energy conservation in the home can help meet that goal. The less energy you use in your home, the less fuel the power plant that serves your home has to burn, and the less fuel power plants have to burn, the less pollution is emitted to the atmosphere. In addition, the mining and transportation of fossil fuels can result in various types of pollution, including acid mine drainage, oil spills, and natural gas leaks. In other words, energy conservation is pollution prevention!
CCE’s 25 Energy Saving Tips Under $100
Citizens Campaign for the Environment celebrates its 25nd anniversary in 2010 with 25 ways to save energy, money, and the environment! CCE has compiled a list of helpful ways to reduce energy consumption, save on costly monthly energy bills, and prevent pollution. In fact, many of these ideas are free to implement and can save significant dollars on home energy bills. Now is the time to become energy efficient! Energy conservation combined with renewable energy will bring us one step closer to energy independence and solving global warming. We encourage you to do your part and conserve energy all year round!
Download "Stay Cool! Conserve Energy at Home", a flier produced by CCE, the Stay Cool! Program (sponsored by the New York Energy $mart Program), Long Island Power Authority, and the New York Power Authority
The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) provides information on New York State programs that provide financial and technical assistance to residences, apartment owners, and businesses to install energy efficient appliances and lighting.
The Long Island Green Homes program is a collaboration between NYSERDA, LIPA, National Grid, and 7 Long Island towns that have made it easier than ever to upgrade your home's energy performance.
- Start by getting a comprehensive Home Energy Audit - it's free or at a reduced cost for most Long Islanders. A program-approved, BPI-accredited contractor will perform a comprehensive analysis of your home, then provide you with a report of the existing conditions in your house and recommended upgrades with associated costs and estimated energy savings. Then you can have the energy-saving measures installed, knowing that they will pay for themselves. With available low-cost financing, you could have no out-of-pocket expenses. The savings in your energy bills will pay for the improvements to your home and continue to save money and help the environment.
Updated by bsmith 8/1/11