Wisconsin Environment is releasing a new guide to help Americans conserve energy and reduce wasted energy in their homes and businesses. Published on Energy Efficiency Day, with colder autumn and winter months looming, the energy-saving measures proposed by Environment America’s It’s Time to Take Charge: A Citizens’ Guide to Reducing Energy Waste guide can help tackle our national energy waste problem.
“The ways we communicate and shop and work and live have all changed dramatically in the last decade. But we still produce and consume energy the same ways we did almost a hundred years ago, putting our most basic needs at risk-- our health, the environment, and even the climate, ” said Megan Severson, State Director at Wisconsin Environment. “We must start conserving energy, right now. This guide will help people adopt energy-saving measures and tap into new technologies and appliances that increase home energy efficiency.”
Experts estimate that the United States can reduce its overall energy consumption by 40 to 60 percent by mid-century simply by using better technologies and eliminating waste across our economy. Much of the energy waste is due to inadequate insulation, inefficient heating and cooling systems, and out-of-date appliances and technologies. But our individual, everyday actions -- forgetting to shut off the lights, overheating our water heaters, machine-washing half-full loads of clothing -- also add up.
“Excessive and inefficient energy consumption is one of the greatest economic and environmental challenges of our time. Making changes, even small ones, add up to make a large impact,” shared Mary Woolsey Schlaefer, President and CEO of WECC. WECC is a mission-driven nonprofit focused on developing innovative solutions to address these challenges.
“We can have better health and a more sustainable environment, while also paying less for utility bills,” continued Severson. “Efficiency improvements pay for themselves. This guide is designed to help families cut through the clutter of information and pick the improvements that will help them minimize energy waste.”
“Americans across the country are shifting to cleaner, less risky energy sources such as solar and wind, but regardless of where our energy comes from, wastefulness is unacceptable,” concluded Severson. “Creating a clean, healthy future for our kids and grandkids will require not just replacing fossil fuels with renewable sources, but also maximizing how much energy we get from those renewable sources.”
 ACEEE, We Have the Power Report, p22