Community Resilience Challenge Action Ideas (Energy)

  • Hang a clothes line
  • Conduct a home energy efficiency audit to diagnose areas for improvement
  • Unplug and tune-in to Nature
  • Go reusable — water bottle, coffee or tea mug, food containers, shopping bags and diapers
  • Buy fresh produce and bulk goods — it’s healthier, produces less packaging and usually cost less
  • Install a programmable thermostat and set it comfortably high in summer and comfortably low in winter — enjoy a cozy sweater!
  • Lower the thermostat on your hot water heater to 120 degrees Fahrenheit
  • When washing clothes or dishes follow load guidelines — only run when the machine houses a full load
  • Air dry dishes rather than using heated drying cycle
  • Wash clothes with cold water — it not only reduces energy used for hot water, but it’s better for your clothes 
  • Commit to walking or biking — it’s good for you and good for the earth
  • Shift your use off-peak — do laundry and other high-energy activities in the morning or at night when demand on the grid is low and energy is cheaper
  • Upgrade to more efficient compact fluorescents, or better LED light bulbs — they use less energy and last longer  
  • Plant deciduous vines or trees to shade south facing windows in summer to reduce cooling needs
  • Record your monthly energy use and look for places to reduce
  • Shorten the supply chain — source locally and simplify your needs
  • Instead of driving, chaperone a walking or biking bus to school for your kids and their friends
  • Buy with foresight — preference quality, durable goods that are slow to wear out and can be fixed if they break
  • Make it a “car-party” — up the efficiency of your ride and spend time with friends by carpooling  
  • Cook or cure with sun — build a solar oven or dehydrator, or use the dashboard of your hot car
  • Recycle — clothes, batteries, motor oil, light bulbs, scrap wood and metal, furniture, Mother’s day wrapping paper!
  • Dust off refrigerator coils to save energy by improving its efficiency
  • Set computers and monitors to power down when not in use
  • Buy higher efficiency Energy Star label appliances
  • Rethink travel — uses conference calls or web meetings to reduce employee travel
  • Turn off lights in unoccupied areas — install timers or motion sensors to help

 Going Deeper (Energy)

  • Tap into alternative  energy sources — solar, wind, micro hydro, human, animal (horses pull plows, chickens turn beds, sheep mow lawns)
  • Go solar thermal — use the sun to heat the water for your home, pool or sun-tea
  • Get grounded — use the constant 58 oF of the earth’s crust as a heat exchanger to help heat or cool your home
  • Replace old conductive single pane windows with high-efficiency double pane alternatives
  • Install solartubes or skylights to bring in the sun’s mood-enhancing rays instead of using electric lighting
  • Add additional insulation to your attic or crawlspaces to reduce your home’s heat loss and gain
  • Install insulated blinds on windows to reduce heating and cooling needs
  • Seal the cracks — reduce unnecessary heating or cooling losses from your building

Additional Resources (Energy)

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