It’s no secret that we use way too much energy, especially in the United States. According to the U.S Energy Information Administration, the total annual per-capita energy consumption in the US is 98,814 kilowatt hours every year. Compare this to the annual worldwide per-capita consumption of 21,213 kilowatt hours per year.
With these kinds of figures, it’s no surprise that the average energy bill in all regions of the United States is above $100 per month.
No matter where you live, taking more progressive measures to cut your dependency on energy usage can not only mean financial savings. Energy awareness means a relief to companies constantly working to provide enough energy to millions of people every day. It’s just smart!
Try a bike!
Cities across the US know that growing populations means more gridlock on the roads. Traffic is becoming more prevalent in every urbanized region that you go, and now many cities are adapting the infrastructure from the European Union by incorporating more bike lanes in and around greater city areas.
If you are in a town or city where bike lanes exist or are being developed, take advantage! Turning your transportation reliance away from your car means less gas expenditures (therefore less energy altogether), and can mean a long string of health benefits.
Do research on bike laws in your state and city, learn about which bike is the right fit for you, and hop on the saddle!
Need some extra convincing? How about this:
- The average cost to own and operate a vehicle is $8,698 per year (AAA 2015 Your Driving Costs).
- The average cost to own and operate a bicycle is $350 per year (James Schwartz, The Urban Country).
Stop showering so much
Yes, you probably take too many showers. Apart from all of the hot water getting used, dermatologists agree that daily showers do more harm than good for your skin.
An Elite Daily article explored the topic, finding that as long as people are consistently keeping their hands clean, along with hygiene in one’s personal areas, it’s not out of the question to shower maybe two to three times per week.
Of course, if you are a more active person who makes a daily trip to the gym or spends 30 minutes going for a run, then it’s understandable that a few more showers may be necessary.
Look into smart home technologies
Home automation is becoming more common in homes across the country, and convenience is just one of the reasons. Companies such as ADT have developed Pulse (and now Canopy) to help customers control their heating/cooling, lighting, and more when they are away.
Trying to keep track of your energy usage can be tricky. While taking small measures such as unplugging unused appliances are essential to cutting back on energy usage, a home automation system carries a lot of the weight for you.
With the growing amount of demand for home automation, the availability and accessibility of such products is increasing year by year. In fact, according to Coldwell Banker, close to 45 percent of Americans will bring smart home technologies into their household by the end of 2016.