At Home

Part of the Climate Change exhibition.

Energy-efficient light bulb.

Getting a home energy audit

Local utility companies will often provide an inspection or guidelines to do it yourself.

Using less electricity

Every kilowatt-hour of electricity generated produces about 0.8 kilograms (1.7 pounds) of CO2.

Installing a "smart meter"

A pilot project in Brighton, England, showed that people watch their energy habits more closely when they can see how much they use.

Switching your light bulbs

Switching from a 60-watt incandescent bulb to a 13-watt compact fluorescent light bulb (CFL) can save 360 kilograms (800 pounds) of CO2 emissions over the life of the CFL.

Unplugging idle electronics

In standby mode, a digital cable TV box uses 26 watts and a home desktop computer 4 watts.

Using energy-efficient appliances

Energy Star labels say how much energy an item uses—and saves.

Running dishwashers and washing machines only for full loads

Line-drying your clothes

Turning to renewable energy

Wind, solar, and hydroelectric power provide energy without emitting CO2

Asking the power company about energy options

Some local governments provide economic incentives to switch to clean energy.

Installing solar panels

Every kilowatt-hour of electricity generated by sunlight reduces what's drawn from the power company. Financial incentives may be available.


Sealing air leaks in walls and attics

Replacing drafty windows with double-glazed ones

Insulating hot water heater and pipes

Keeping an eye on the thermostat
Heating and cooling uses more than half of the energy in an average home.

Installing a programmable thermostat

Lowering the temperature from 21 to 18°C (70 to 65°F) can save up to 10 percent on heating costs.

Replacing an old furnace or air conditioner

Installing a ceiling fan or opening a window instead of using air conditioning

Setting your air conditioner temperature at 23°C (75°F) or higher

Using less hot water

It takes energy to heat water.

Setting the water heater at 50°C (122°F) or lower

Washing dishes and clothes in cold water

Installing low-flow faucets and showers

A flow rate of 5.7 to 9.5 liters (1.5 to 2.5 gallons) a minute can save up to 60 percent on hot water use.

Taking showers, not baths