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Published on April 28th, 2014 | by Sandy Dechert


Cut Home Energy Use, Save Money, & Help Re-Green The Earth

April 28th, 2014 by  

For Earth Day this year, Jeff Flowers of Living Direct introduced a detailed infographic showing a few things homeowners can do to cut energy use around their homes, save money, and help re-green the earth. Earth Day is essentially every day for us, so we’re just getting around to sharing it today.

A company called oBiz Media helped create the home energy chart. It’s called The Homeowner’s Guide to Saving Money & Energy. Almost 80% of the information comes from official US government measures and estimates.

The Homeowner’s Guide contains four sections. We’re going to break them down for you below the infographic, because the graphic is really designed for scrolling, and we’d like to discuss each of its main points separately.


In the first section, Living Direct discusses Energy Star, the government’s labeling program to certify products as energy-efficient for consumers. Over the past two decades, more than 4.5 billion of these products—appliances, lighting, home electronics, office equipment, and HVAC systems—have been sold. About one and a half million homes are Energy Star-certified. And since 1995, when EPA started labeling homes, owners have saved over $4 billion on utility bills and protected the world environment from over 39 billion pounds of greenhouse gas emissions.

Second comes “Saving Money.” This section singles out savings made with windows and doors, washing machines (including water savings), refrigerators (75% more efficient than in 1970s, top freezers more efficient than side-by-sides), and HVAC savings. The graphic also displays 2013 federal tax credits available for purchase of Energy Star products. Some of these (biomass stoves, for example) have received mixed reviews in terms of greenhouse gas emissions.

The third block of the graphic concerns shopping and details energy savings in terms of watts saved by nine popular appliances.

Finally, “Saving the Environment” presents 2009 values (the most recent available?) of the carbon footprints in six consumer sectors. It also analyzes single- and double-pane replacement window savings in terms of dollars as well as pounds of CO2 and gallons of gas saved.

Since energy efficiency standards were developed, Living Direct says consumers have saved $2000 per household, numbers expected to double in the next 20 years. Finally, the graphic discusses water savings from efficient toilets and WaterSense faucets. 

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About the Author

covers environmental, health, renewable and conventional energy, and climate change news. She's currently on the climate beat for Important Media, having attended last year's COP20 in Lima Peru. Sandy has also worked for groundbreaking environmental consultants and a Fortune 100 health care firm. She writes for several weblogs and attributes her modest success to an "indelible habit of poking around to satisfy my own curiosity."

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