Energy at Home
- Whether you are a home owner, business operator or industry professional, consider the energy efficiency savings that you could achieve through engaging with the Mass Save initiative, sponsored by Massachusetts’ gas and electric utilities and energy efficiency service providers.
- Lower the temperature on your hot water heater.
- Use less hot water. Heating water consumes a lot of energy. Try installing a low-flow showerhead and washing your clothes in cold or warm water instead of hot. Annual carbon dioxide savings: 850 pounds.
- Set your thermostat 2 degrees Fahrenheit lower in winter and 2 degrees higher in summer. Heating and cooling account for half of all energy use at home. Annual carbon dioxide savings: 2,000 pounds.
- Wrap an insulation blanket around your water heater. While you're at it, set the unit's thermostat to no higher than 120 degrees Fahrenheit. Annual carbon dioxide savings: 1,850 pounds.
- Unplug your cell phone when the battery is full.
- Wash clothing in cold water.
- Replace regular light bulbs with compact fluorescent lamps. New fluorescent bulbs use 60 percent less energy than old-style incandescent light bulbs. Handle them carefully, as they contain small amounts of mercury. Annual carbon dioxide savings: 300 pounds.
- Schedule a home energy audit. Many utilities check customers' homes, provide simple energy-saving devices for free, and offer suggestions on improving insulation and energy efficiency. Annual carbon dioxide savings: 1,000 pounds (plus a 30 percent savings on your home heating and cooling bill).
- When purchasing appliances look for Energy Star ratings.
- Use sustainably harvested timber.
- Recycle as much waste as possible. Learn about recycling programs in your community. Annual carbon dioxide savings of recycling half of your household waste: 2,400 pounds.
- Avoid products with excessive packaging. This simple step can reduce the amount of trash you need to recycle or throw away by 10 percent. Annual carbon dioxide savings: 1,200 pounds.
- When working on larger projects please refer to our page at MassDEP for Information and resources on managing waste from construction and demolition.
- If you work at a large or small businesses from an industrial sectors or part of an institutions such as a hospital, school, college or universities, as well as state, local, and tribal governments, take the time to enroll your organization in the Waste Wise program for free.
- When parting with wanted consumer electronics refer to the resources available at DEP for the appropriate disposal methods.
- Try to identify ways that your community can reduce waste through the DEP’s waste reduction program.
Transportation and Smart Growth
- Walk, ride your bike, carpool with a friend, or take mass transit whenever possible. Learn more about transportation options in your area from MassRIDES. Annual carbon dioxide savings from avoiding just 10 miles of driving per week: 500 pounds.
- When replacing your car, choose a more fuel-efficient vehicle. See the U.S. Fuel Economy Ratings. Annual carbon dioxide savings if your new car gets only 3 miles per gallon more than your old one: 3,000 pounds. (For additional fuel-saving ideas, see Gas Tips from the Massachusetts Executive Office of Transportation.)
- Drive the posted speed limit or the minimum allowed. Vehicle fuel consumption increases about 5% for every 5 miles per hour driven above 60 mph. Overal savings in fuel costs from slower driving can range from 7% to 23%.
- Check your tire pressure monthly - an estimated 25% of all vehicles are running on under inflated tires. Proper tire pressure is safer, extends tire life and can improve mpg by up to 3%.
- Vacation closer to home. Air travel is more popular than every and jet fuel combustion is a major contributor to climate change. Carbon dioxide savings from not taking one round-trip flight of 1,600 miles: 720 pounds.
- Use the resources available at Mass Grown to find locally grown foods.
- When shopping bring your own bag.
- Learn about Climate Change through any of these resources, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, City of Boston & Climate Change, EPA Climate Change Site, NASA.
- Calculate your personal or household impact on climate change using the Nature Conservancy Carbon Calculator.
- Find out how your home electricity use affects air quality and global climate change with the EPA Power Profiler.