GLOBE Foundation

Are you winning the home energy management challenge?


Source: GLOBE Foundation

A new report just released by Statistics Canada found that Canadians were getting ahead of the energy saving game by turning off computer monitors not in use and washing laundry in cold water. Does this sound like you?

Four out of Five (82%) households reported that they practiced at least one energy saving option, but a full 58% reported that they either turned of computer monitors or used the cold water cycle on their washing machine.

What are some other energy saving practices that Canadians tried? Programmable thermostats, compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs), turning off gas pilot lights in the summer, and air-drying dishes in the dishwasher.

What other ways can you save money and help the environment by reducing energy consumption at home?

Stats Canada has some suggestions. Some are easy to do and others require some investment and physical changes to your house or apartment. Programmable thermostats, compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs) and drying racks are sensible options. Physical changes would include installation of more efficient heating and cooling systems, upgrading the insulation and caulking air-leaking windows and doors.

The published report, ' Households and the Environment: Energy Use' (data from 2011) included some interesting highlights:

Heating Equipment and fuel

  • Furnaces were the most common type of heating system used by Canadian Household (57%), next were electric baseboards (27%) and boilers (5%).
  • Natural gas was the heating fuel in 50 per cent of Canadian homes.
  • Electricity was the second most common fuel source used by 39 percent of households.

Energy Consumption

  • Canadian households used 4% more energy compared to 2007.
  • Households in Prince Edward Island had the highest average energy consumption followed by Alberta.
  • Lowest energy consumption households were in Quebec and New Brunswick.

Characteristics of households and dwellings

  • Apartment dwellers used less energy consumption than those in single detached homes.
  • Those that lived in rented households consumed less energy than those who owned their dwelling. Most who rented lived in apartments

Energy-saving and retrofitting practices

  • 82% of households applied at least one method to conserve energy in 2011.
  • At least one Energy Star appliance was used in 71% of households in 2011.
  • To improve energy efficiency, 37% of Canadian households made at least one improvement to their home between 2008 and 2011.

For those wanting to join the winner's circle on home energy management, reduce energy consumption and save on energy costs, this report has plenty of suggestions anyone can put into practice

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