... and how to be energy-wise every day
Earth Hour 2018 takes place on March 24 from 8:30 to 9:30 p.m.
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What is Earth Hour?
Earth Hour is a worldwide movement organized by the WWF - formerly the World Wildlife Fund, now renamed the World Wide Fund for Nature. The event is held annually, encouraging individuals, communities and businesses to turn off non-essential electric lights for one hour. The event takes place from 8:30 to 9:30 pm on a specific day towards the end of March.
How does one hour a year help the environment?
Earth Hour itself has two main purposes - it is a symbol of commitment to the planet, and it reminds people to take a closer look at their energy consumption and think about ways to reduce it all year long.
What can we do the rest of the year to reduce energy use?
Here are some things you can do every season do protect the Earth, as well as save money.
- service your air conditioner, and clean your vents, ducts and the coils of appliances - when these appliances run efficiently, they use less power
- plant shade trees to reduce the need for A/C come summer
- check for leaks around windows and doors, then seal them
- set the thermostat a degree higher than you did last year - you'll probably get used to it quicker than you think
- open the windows at night if it's cool out
- Going on vacation? unplug everything you possibly can before you go away (use power bars or smart switches to make this less of a hassle) and set the thermostat to come on only minimally
- pull the shades on windows in rooms you're not using
- service your furnace - it will run cleaner and use less power
- winterize your A/C and water lines to prevent heat from escaping
- keep the thermostat a degree lower than you did last year and keep a sweater handy
- set ceiling fans to turn the opposite way - when run counterclockwise, fans push warm air down
- close the curtains and blinds, especially at night - window coverings help keep the heat in
- choose energy efficient holiday lights that do not emit heat, and set them on timers
- turn down the water heater just a few degrees - up to 30% of your home's energy costs may be going to heating water
- close vents in unused or rarely used rooms and keep the doors closed so you're not heating or cooling them
- keep your fridge and freezer energy efficient by using glass storage containers instead of plastic, not storing leftovers until they've cooled, and setting the temperature right - fridges should be set between 2.5°C and 5°C and freezers should be kept at around -17°C