Last week we were looking at different actions that citizens could put into practices in their homes to become more sustainable and save money.
As you all now the most economical and greenest energy is that which we don´t use so here are a few tips on how we can save lots of energy and natural resources in easy steps.
Using green cleaning products
Consumer pantry is filled with many industrial home products that seem essential. However, there are ecological, simple and inexpensive alternatives, without the negative effects on the environment and health of excessive use of harmful chemicals. It takes many weeks and sometimes months to have a sewerage treatment plant full with good bacteria which works silently like an army eating away our unwanted organic materials. These little buddies do not like industrial chemical cleaning agents and it is almost impossible to subtract these chemicals from the sewerage treatment plants, so every time there is an upsurge of these chemicals in the sewers many millions of these aerobic bacteria die.
Water, vinegar, lemon, natural soap are some of the basic ingredients available to everyone. Another simpler option is to buy ammonia or chlorine-free commercial products, to avoid its adverse effects on our buddies.
Only buy products with high energy efficiency.
Appliances marketed in the European Union (EU), such as refrigerators, washing machines, dishwashers and vacuum cleaners, must bear a label certifying energy efficiency. In it a seven colours and letters, A green (most efficient) to G red (most wasteful), plus three additional levels of maximum efficiency (A +, A ++ and A +++) is shown.
The disadvantage is that efficient appliances are more expensive, but are amortized in no time. A refrigerator (the appliance that consumes more energy in homes, with more than 30%) Model A +++ can consume 80% less than a Class D. Over its lifetime, a refrigerator A +++ emit a ton and a half less dioxide carbon dioxide (CO2), one of the main gases linked to climate change, and save more than 1,000 € to a Class D. In order to be more economical, it is advisable to compare prices and brands, wait for the sales and the Spanish "Plan Renove ".
Furthermore, one should choose the one that best suits our needs.
The advantages of knowing and using the most efficient products have led the government to legislate its use in other consumer goods, such as light bulbs, tyres and even buildings.
Only use low energy light bulbs.
Another domestic energy expenditure corresponds to lighting (20%). Replace five incandescent lights with low-consumption can prevent up to 60 Euros per year and emissions of 340 kilos of CO2. Although more expensive, long life bulbs makes them much more economical and ecological in the long term. At present, there are many varieties of prices and models. I don't get tire of recommending the LED technology lamps: they do not contain mercury or lead, can last many years and its consumption is very very low.
Turn off the "electrical vampires".
Devices that use energy 24 hours a day even when off are another enemy of efficiency. Turn off the "stand by" appliances can save about 50€ per year. To facilitate the shutdown of multiple devices is a very useful to use an electrical strip plug.
Improve your thermal insulation at home.
To adapt our home environment to the heat and cold during the various seasons of the year can suppose a major expense. Each degree that the air conditioning is raised up 7% more energy is consumed.
To install good thermal insulation in walls and ceilings, and double glazing can reduce energy consumption by up to 30%. Several institutions do provide support for this. Use efficient boilers. Boilers for water heating or central heating system are other important energy consumption. There are various grants in Spain for renovation these installations and is a good opportunity to switch to more efficient models.
Put energy control systems. Home automation systems, thermostats, smart meters, switches with movement detector or dimming are some options that also save energy.
As you can see there are an array of methods and ways to save energy and resources and now days it is a crime not to use those energy saving devices and techniques to save energy, especially in Spain where we have a glorious sun shines for at least 10 months a year.