When the temperature goes up outside, so does the demand for energy for cooling. Research shows that for every one degree Fahrenheit increase in outdoor air temperatures, demand for energy increases by 1.5 to two percent! Rising energy use can lead to an increase in air pollutant emissions, which impact human health and contribute to the formation of ground-level ozone, or smog.
Viewer Tip: As the temperature rises, give these tips a try to save energy at home while staying cool.
- Bump the thermostat up to 78 degrees when no one is home. For each degree you raise the thermostat, you’ll save three to five percent on air conditioning costs. Close shades and curtains during the day to keep the heat out.
- Run a ceiling fan to create a breeze. Raising the thermostat by just two degrees and using a ceiling fan can reduce cooling costs by up to 14 percent! Remember that fans only cool people – turn them off when you leave a room.
- If you are purchasing a room air conditioner, look for the Energy Star label. Energy Star qualified models use at least ten percent less energy than standard models.
(Sources: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. “Heat Island Impacts.” http://www.epa.gov/heatisld/impacts/index.htm; U.S. EPA, “EPA Offers Cooling Tips for Every Budget this Summer.” http://yosemite.epa.gov/opa/admpress.nsf/6424ac1caa800aab85257359003f5337/386ebff0a635644f8525773c004d84d3!OpenDocument)