A new community conservation project is underfoot and I am right in the middle of it. In short, I am right where I want to be. You may know that I work locally on my island to promote preservation of our watershed. I belong to several national organizations that sponsor individual efforts to save energy in one’s area by campaigning to the public. There is power in numbers. There are various means to do this well. You can do radio and newspapers ads, particularly effective in small towns, and you can have events with local speakers. Put out flyers and posters and post about it on Facebook. If the mayor or other municipal officials are willing to participate, your turnout will be better. Several of these environmental organizations have prototypes you can follow so you only have to commit to the project and provide a date. They give you all kinds of ideas and publicity stunts. It is all part of a pre-planned package and there is no charge.
Energy consumption is an important issue and I enjoy promoting it as most anyone can do something about it at home. We must draw attention to wasteful practices like leaving lights on all day when no one is home. And then there is the TV on for hours all weekend long. You can also switch out your old water heater for the new more efficient tankless kind. I have a long list of items that are energy eaters, mostly old appliances. A huge part of anyone’s utility bill is the heating and air conditioning system. It is a problem in most climates since there are periods of extreme hot or cold—southern California excepted. It is recommended to keep temperatures at 72 degrees in the winter and 78 degrees or more in the summer. These is a comfortable range for most people. I would give some leeway to the elderly.
But wait! There is more. The Watershed Counsel on my island has started a campaign of its own to get people to choose from this web page a ceiling fan for their home, as an energy-efficient, more environmentally friendly alternative to air conditioners. I find this to be an exceptional idea. They are inexpensive, unless you want a special decorator model with a solid brass fixture, and easy to install. They look appropriate in most rooms of the house. While one in every room might look a bit foolish, a few strategic places will help cool everyone off when the temperature soars. Ceiling fans come in many finishes and the blades can be wood, plastic or metal as you wish. People enjoy the breeze they generate and the lack of stuffiness in the house when the windows are closed. To help change our evil ways in the community, a local supplier has agreed to discount fans that are purchased specifically to save energy. This is how a grass roots project gets going. Everyone sooner or later wants to help. You can also get on board a recycling train and maximize your efforts.