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Question of the Week: What have you done to meet your Energy Star pledge?

2009 September 28

“Change the World, Start with ENERGY STAR” is a national campaign encouraging all Americans to take small, individual steps that make a big difference in the fight against global warming. Take the Energy Star pledge.

What have you done to meet your Energy Star pledge?

Each week we ask a question related to the environment. Please let us know your thoughts as comments. Feel free to respond to earlier comments or post new ideas. Previous questions.

Editor's Note: The opinions expressed in Greenversations are those of the author. They do not reflect EPA policy, endorsement, or action, and EPA does not verify the accuracy or science of the contents of the blog.

27 Responses leave one →
  1. Mariojose Angeles permalink
    September 28, 2009

    Dear Friends,
    The work we are doing to change the world.
    It begins in our thoughts and in our physical bodies.
    We are the microcosm of the macrocosm.
    Greetings,
    Mariojose Angeles.

  2. porco permalink
    September 28, 2009

    parlez moi de l energie de l humain et de l energie cinétique et de la rotation de la terre et de la lune et de mars qui est une énergie illimitée sans parler de la fusion froide et de l antimatiere au numero atomique 113- et 114- et surtout 115

    et je vous dit que le mythe d anthée est vrai on peut faire de l energie en tout point de l univers et notamment par le subnucleaire et l energie du vide cosmique de l atmosphere par les ions positifs et negatifs des atmospheres sans parler de l hydrogene des pierres de mars et de la lune et de la terre et du sable des deserts

    dites moi ce qu il manque pour faire un paradis sur terre dites le au cfr je m en occupe personnellement

  3. Marty permalink
    September 28, 2009

    My husband and I are using energy efficient lightbulbs throughout the house. We have installed a new furnace & air conditioning unit.
    We have replaced the windows in our house (only 2 to go!) and have added more insulation in the attic. Sealing nooks and crannies
    with caulking helps too. 2 years ago, we purchased new kitchen appliances–all with the energy star approval labels. We are looking at more ways to improve our environment (and our lives)and are really thankful for the government deductions on our income tax for doing the “star” program.

  4. Jackenson Durand permalink
    September 28, 2009

    Continuing to spread the word even that having serious impact on child, family and real personality.

  5. Dave permalink
    September 28, 2009

    We installed Thermal curtains throughout the house, converted to
    CFL bulbs, wrapped hot water heater w/blanket and installed a timer (for the hw heater). We are in Central Fla. where wer’e still having 90 + temps, in addition to that our house faces East, so needless to say, we’ve been taking a beating on the power bills.
    More improvements to come.

  6. Bgcoffeelover permalink
    September 28, 2009

    As an engineer I have long dreamed of building “The House” from a Green perspective, In 2006 the dream came true! The Energy Star program drove all of our choices for appliances, lighting, HVAC, etc. Some of the items we did include the following:
    1. All new appliances – Front Load washer (He) and dryer, chest freezer, instant hot water in remote master bath, kitchen appliances.
    2. We have recessed lighting throughout and around the exterior of our house. I use CF 100w “Daylight ” in most of them. That is a 74% savings over std bulbs.
    3. Wrapping the primary “tank” of the hot water supply, and adjusting the temperature to 118 deg F.
    4. Timers on driveway lighting and pool pump.
    5. Positioning of the home for passive solar effect.

    The overall savings comes to about 30% in this all electric home.
    Live Green!
    Tony

  7. Johnny R. permalink
    September 28, 2009

    I’ve been using 10 year light bulbs for about 3 years now and haven’t needed to replace any yet. In fact, the lamp switch wears out before the bulb. Lamps come and go, but the bulbs go on and on, so I may have to include them in my Will.

  8. h.breeze permalink
    September 28, 2009

    Hello,

    I bypassed a 120va/c appliance and made my own that uses 12v 45ma. with Savings, Health & Luxury style benefits.

    If the nation had my innovation. It would create jobs in every state and become the energy conservation darling of the 21st Century.

    You should forward my email to DOE and President Obama.

    Good luck to you.
    H.Breeze

  9. Sandi permalink
    September 28, 2009

    We’ve purchased energy star appliances, buy as little and recycle everything we can, take reusable bags to stores and for lunches (almost all the time!), use reusable containers instead of plastic ziploc bags, are much more careful about water use (save water to use on plants, etc.), are getting rid of 1/2 our grass and are planting fruit trees and vegetables, are using all “natural” cleaners, we’ve converted to CFL light bulbs, use a fan in addition to A/C to use less energy, joined a CSA, and “cluster” errands to use less gas. We also are keeping our cars until they die (they are not hybrids, but they will go to a landfill somewhere then so we’re keeping them maintained well and will totally use them up!)

  10. Gordon Chamberlain permalink
    September 28, 2009

    To h.breeze It would be better if your patened your a/c then approach the a/c manufacturers as they would be able to get your innovation to market the quickest. There has got to be a way to get innovation to market in as userfriendly a manner as possible. The US Paten office might have some info. Best wishes

  11. Jon permalink
    September 28, 2009

    We have replaced mostly all our light bulbs with CFL bulbs (there are no three-way CFLs) and we just replaced our wicked-old washer with an energy-star top loader…which is sweet! We have an energry-star flat-screen tv and dvd player, we have those surge-protectors that switch off the power when the computer or tv is off…which saves a lot of that power that you don’t think gets sucked when your items are turned off. We also unplug the toaster and fans when they aren’t in use.

  12. Bill Mc permalink
    September 28, 2009

    After a lot of diligent research on the GHG/climate change issue, I am totally unconcerned with my GHG footprint. The period between this interglacial, the Holocene, and the previous one, the Eemian (or MIS 5e) preserved in the Greenland cores categorically precludes the probability that GHGs cause climate change. At best, on the B and C class Dansgaard-Oeschger oscillations GHGs seem to ease the last half of the cooling phase but are not involved with any of the 24 8-10C rises which initiated the natural warming cycles. GHGs play no role at all in the A class cycles. No one knows what causes D-O events, but it is a certainty they are not involved in the natural warmings of any kind to date. Like us, GHGs are mere spectators to the dramatically larger, reliable and probably completely unavoidable natural climate change events. If you want an anthropogenic one, have plenty of offspring (aggravating resource demand), allow the rainforests to be devastated, and remember that 13 of our 16 largest cities squat on estuaries.

    Having said that, I am the only person I know that owns both a windmill and solar panels and have made the investments in the third rail of alternative energy, storage systems. I power my entire living room (lights, TV and cpu system) independent from the grid, and am designing a homemade magnetic bearing flywheel system to increase the rate of charge capture that batteries cannot offer with respect to spurious generation systems such as wind and solar.

    But I have fathered no children, and I have done what I can to minimize forest product consumption to be specific on your question.

  13. David permalink
    September 28, 2009

    My roommates and I are three graduate students at UT Austin. Our house has been renovated with new insulation, better windows, dual air conditioners and high efficiency appliances. We also have CFLs in every room and constantly run the air above “normal”, i.e., around 80-82F – even in the summer!

  14. Michael E. Bailey permalink
    September 29, 2009

    I have the 10 year bulbs for all the lights. Also, the Energy Star air conditioner is on a thermastat and won’t come on until it gets 83. Also doing laundry and dishes with only full loads. I am also on the homeowners’ association board of directors and we will be looking at retrofitting our complex street lights from standard bulbs to LED bulbs. This would cut the cost of the street lighting budget by at least 50% and direct the light where it needs to go, to the street, instead of having light pollution where a portion of it shines up into the sky. Best wishes, Michael E. Bailey.

  15. Mary in PA permalink
    September 29, 2009

    I work at a rural electric utility and teach energy efficiency/energy star every day. Personally, I have Energy Star appliances new furnace/heat pump and make a commitment to turning things off when not in use. More insulation and eventually windows are on my to do list.

  16. Mary in PA permalink
    September 29, 2009

    What appliance are you talking about?

  17. ellen permalink
    September 29, 2009

    I bought an energy star approved dvd player for $23 over the weekend.

  18. ellen permalink
    September 29, 2009

    such an engaged, knowledgeable and committed person should consider parenting to pass on the smart genes

  19. Helen McCoy permalink
    September 29, 2009

    we traded in our 20 year old washer and dryer. we not only saved on our electric bill will cut our water bill in half. that old washer used a lot of water.
    we have also changed to flourescent bulbs as the old bulbs burned out. couldn’t afford to change them all at once but this hasn’t been bad and the new bulbs last a lot longer too.

  20. Sharon Washington permalink
    September 29, 2009

    I have my daughter bring her recycling to me. Her apartment has no recycling program. I am part of an active neighborhood watch and we schedule commercial dumpsters to be placed in our community twice a year to prevent illegal dumping, we go out on community clean up parties with food and fun and clean up our community, we have an enviro. awareness component planned for our library, we usually provide enviro. info. within the local activities we have throughout the year, on and on…

  21. John Cockerill permalink
    September 29, 2009

    1. I install boiler reset controls on all jobs.

    2. I walk to the RR station and to get exerecise. I carry a trash picker upper and a pail everywhere I go. It is good exercise, I feel good about a cleaner path where I walk and drive., my wife has a clean path home, folks stop to thank me, I get lots of exercise, and I pick up some verrry interesting trash. I concentrate on roadway, RR stations, Village teen hangouts, when they are not there, and fast food joints. At first folks thought I was the town Schitzo. Now they thank me. Next I will run into someone elae doing it.

  22. Tom permalink
    October 2, 2009

    My wife and I did a lot of the more obvious things (fluorescent lights, LEDs, hang-dry clothing, elimination of phantom loads, replaced ancient appliances, etc.).

    Then I shared my findings with my community in order to encourage others. I quantified the savings*, developed presentation materials, and notified the local media. I also spoke on a League of Women Voters panel on energy conservation.

    http://www.columbiabusinesstimes.com/5622/2009/09/04/tom-o%25E2%2580%2599connor-cut-his-electric-bill-80-percent-and-says-you-can-too/

    *In the month of September, we used a total of 122 kWh. (The US national average is about 1,000 kWh/month.)

  23. Cindy permalink
    October 5, 2009

    My husband and I bought an Energy Star, front-loading washing machine last weekend to replace our 30+(?) year old model – can’t wait to see the savings on our electric and water bills. He has also replaced windows in our house – the old ones were only single-paned and very drafty. 2 years ago we bought an energy star refrigerator…We have an old house so we are trying to update it as the finances alllow.

  24. Arie Louie permalink
    November 4, 2009

    Here are some ideas from my experience as a lighting designer:
    • Install motion detector lighting switches in areas that are usually easy to forget the light on. Like: Garage, walk in closets, bathrooms, storage rooms etc.
    • Where possible replace light bulbs with energy efficient light bulbs like LEDs, Compact fluorescent, etc.
    • Install a photocell/timer for all landscape lighting and time it to hours of use. Where not needed do not let the lights stay on all night.
    • Check lamp wattages and see if you can reduce them. You’ll be surprised at the energy savings..
    • Install dimmer switches, they will help you enhance your environment by allowing you to control the light intensity but will also increase lamp life and save energy.
    • Use Energy Star rated lighting fixtures.

    Enjoy the savings..
    Arie Louie

  25. Ben dicosta permalink
    May 24, 2010

    landscape lighting to decorate your yard is a wonderful idea. You can line your walkway with the lights or make a path to your home using the landscape lights.

  26. rvsolarsupply permalink
    January 31, 2011

    These Solar Panels are designed for 12 volt rechargeable battery systems. The Panels consists of 36 pieces of single crystal silicon cells in series with …

  27. Rob permalink
    June 2, 2011

    I need lighting on the outside of my home at night for safety reasons. I need to be able to see as I walk up and down the steps. Rather than running regular light bulbs in the fixtures on my house I installed low voltage landscape lighting. This way a use a ton less energy and still have the light I need to be safe. Helped me make this conversion to my home.

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