Going green, in many cases, can lead to a self-chosen, simplified lifestyle. Because of this, tech lovers might assume that adopting eco-friendly habits could only result in having to give up the digital doodads they cherish most.
With solar panels, electric cars, and smart homes at the focus of technological trends, we know this is far from the truth. Going green doesn’t mean you have to go back in time. In fact, it really encourages you to move forward with energy efficiency. Technology makes our lives faster, more convenient and easier. That’s a win in itself. Selecting eco-friendly electronics is sort of like a technological upgrade for your technology. You see, going green with your gadgets can improve their efficiency and durability. What’s more, you get to enjoy cutting-edge digital enhancements while lowering home energy costs and reducing your carbon footprint.
According to Live Science, the average household contains about 25 gadgets that consume 10 to 15 percent of an average home’s electricity bill. Choosing energy efficient models and following these best practices can lower your energy bills while reducing - and in some cases all together preventing - the release of carbon dioxide, which is the main pollutant emitted by human activities.
Whether you’re purchasing a gift or replacing a broken down device, shopping smart for green technology upgrades can save you green and is easy to do if you know what to look for. Here are our top 5 Eco-friendly Tech Tips:
The bright blue Energy Star label is your first indicator that your product is going to be more efficient than a standard model, saving you money while helping the planet. All efficacy specifications vary by category but are established by comparing the product’s efficiency to the standard set by the government. Energy Star labeled room air conditioners must be at least 10 percent more efficient than other models. However, Energy Star heating and cooling systems (HVAC) operate with as much as 45 percent more efficiency than the conventional models.
Growing in popularity, bamboo products are safe for the environment and durable. Bamboo grows up to five times faster than wood materials and is one of the most renewable resources on the planet. As a result bamboo products are becoming trendy in the tech world. In terms of durability, it can handle stress better than steel and it can be used to replace plastic parts and other toxic materials in electonics. From iPhone speakers to laptop cases, bamboo offers durability and design.
Laptops and tablets are designed to be energy efficient to maximize battery life and last as long as possible. An iPad uses 35 percent less energy than the average desktop. So if you’re in the market for something new, consider downsizing to a laptop instead of buying another desktop.
- Go Solar
Want to skip on the energy bill all together? Of course, we know that you can solar power your home to cut down on energy costs as you eliminate pollution. But what happens when you’re outside of home? Or what if you rent and have no control of how utilities are organized in your building. The great news is that solar options are becoming plentiful and affordable. Not to mention that they offer a lot of flexibility. Conventional phone charging would have you wandering around, looking for a power outlet. For around $20, you can grab a solar cell phone charger and power up anywhere under the sun!
Smart settings on your TV and computers can impact energy by as much 20 percent when it comes to brightness. And screen savers can actually use more energy by making computers work harder. It all adds up, but nearly every gadgets you currently own, has settings to help make it run smoother and use less power. Taking the time to do this now is worth it. By putting game consoles like PS3 and Xbox 360 into power down mode, you can save nearly $100 a year in electricity costs. Also, avoid streaming video through your game consoles. They can require up to 30 times more energy to play than a TV that is “internet-ready” or an Apple TV box.
Improving our environmental conditions doesn’t require a drastic overhaul in lifestyle. It’s simply about becoming aware that all things can be done with more energy efficiency. Not only will you experience immediate benefits for your budget, you’ll be making a tremendous difference on the environment. According to the EPA, over the last two decades, households and business have prevented nearly two billion metric tons of greenhouse gases by using Energy Star labels and across the country, people have saved more than $230 billion on utilities bills since the program’s inception.
If you’re committed to making a difference by practicing an eco-friendly lifestyle, connect with us on Facebook for more ideas and to keep the conversation going!