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Top 10 energy-saving tips to help the environment

So what can we all do to help save our environment? We make less mess and use less energy. That’s the idea, at least. But can we all do our part?

an image of a crescent Earth as viewed from spaceSo what can we all do to help save our environment? We make less mess and use less energy. That’s the idea, at least. But can we all do our part?

We’re making a total mess of our world. It’s pretty simple if the various arguments aren’t. Right now, I want to discuss solutions, not more problems.

10 top tips to help you help the environment

Here’s ten top energy-saving tips taken from the Energy Saving Trust website:

1. Brush up on energy saving
Eliminate draughts and wasted heat by installing a cheap, easy-to-fix brush or PVC seal on your exterior doors. Letterboxes and keyholes should be covered too.

2. Draught dodgers
Draughts also get in through gaps in floorboards and skirting boards, which also allow heat to escape in the winter months. Filling them with newspaper, beading or sealant will help you stop throwing heat (and your money!) away.

3. A bright idea & buy an energy saving light bulb
Trade your ordinary light bulbs for energy saving ones. Costing from just £3.50, energy saving light bulbs last 12 times longer and for each bulb you fit, you could save up to £9 on your annual electricity bill or £100 over the bulb’s lifetime.

4. Treat your tank & give it a jacket
An insulating jacket for a hot water tank only costs a few pounds and pays for itself within months. Fit one that’s at least 75mm (3″) thick and you could save around £20 a year. If every UK household fitted a jacket on their tank tomorrow, we’d save over £95 million of energy every year!

5. Lofty ambitions
Insulating your loft is one of the simplest ways to save energy and you can even install it yourself. Insulate you loft today and in a year you could between £180 and £220.

6. Look for cavities
Around 33% of the heat lost in your home is through the walls, so insulating them can be the most cost-effective way to save energy in the home – you could save £130 to £160 on your annual heating bills! Cavity wall insulation will also keep you cool in the summer and warm in winter. It’s straightforward, inexpensive and hassle-free. If we all had our cavity walls filled tomorrow, together we’d save over £962 million of energy every year.

7. Boilers – it may not be broke but it might still need fixing!
If your boiler is over 15 years old it’s probably time to replace it. By law, new boilers must now be of the high-efficiency condensing type. They can help you save up to a third on your heating bills and even more if you upgrade to modern controls.

8. Look for the logo
When replacing appliances, look for ones displaying the energy saving recommended logo. Energy saving appliances use less energy and could save you up to £45 a year.

9. See double … and cut heat loss by 50%
Double-glazing cuts heat loss through windows by 50% and could cut your heating bill by £80 to £100.

10. Take our online home energy check
Still not sure which are your home’s weak spots? Why not complete our online home energy check? If you’d prefer to speak to someone you can call a local energy efficiency advisor on 0800 512 012.

More energy-saving resources

For more on saving energy to save money, go to the Carbon Trust website. Also, for yet more energy-saving tips, pay a visit to the Energy Solutions Alberta website, too.

The cold, hard facts

Believe me when I say that there are some exceptionally smart people working on the less-is-more thing with regards to energy consumption.

So while the guys at Eneco busy themselves with saving the world one chip at a time, we can still be doing our part, too.

Affecting social change isn’t easy, nor is it something that happens over night, or within a decade, even. And for we British, we head a list which isn’t the kind of list anyone would wish to be the top of:

“Britons are the worst energy wasters in Europe with bad habits which could cost £11bn by 2010, a survey of Europe’s five most populous nations suggests … If the levels of wastage continue, an extra 43m tonnes of carbon dioxide will be pumped into the atmosphere by then, the Energy Saving Trust said.

[Energy Saving Trust] interviewed 5,000 people in the UK, France, Germany, Spain and Italy.

Figures in the Habits of a Lifetime report, commissioned to mark the start of Energy Saving Week, said 71% of UK consumers admit to leaving standby buttons on once a week.

Meanwhile, 65% of UK consumers leave chargers on once a week and 63% forget to switch the lights off when leaving the room.”

I’ll not depress you with the rest of the figures. If you want, you can follow the BBC article up for yourself.

If everyone pulls together and plays their part, not only can we help ourselves save a little money, but we can also help save our environment, too.

Now go hug a tree, or something…

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By Wayne Smallman

Wayne is the man behind the Blah, Blah! Technology website, and the creator of the Under Cloud, a digital research assistant for journalists and academics.

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