Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Today's Energy Insight

A district employee asked me the following: "Does washing dishes by hand use less energy than running an electric dishwasher?"

Thanks to current technology, running a dishwasher actually uses less energy than washing dishes by hand. According to a recent Ohio State University study, energy-efficient models use about six fewer gallons of water per load than you would use washing the same number of dishes by hand. Using six fewer gallons of water means heating six fewer gallons of water thus saving energy.

Another study at the University of Bonn in Germany has proven that an efficient dishwasher uses only half the energy, one-sixth of the water and less soap than hand washing. This study also rated the cleanliness achieved and found in favor of the machine verses washing by hand.

Good question, thanks for asking!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

ESC Update

The Education Service Center is an all-electric building. In light of the electrical fire at the ESC in June, as the building is slowly getting back up to full occupancy, now more than ever, the staff in the building needs to be extremely mindful of their energy use. It’s not just about conserving energy to save money and reduce greenhouse gas emissions; it’s about safety and the building operating on reduced power. Please keep in mind the following:
  • Turn off lights when you leave an office or area and it’s unoccupied.
  • Do not use fans or space heaters, layer your clothing for the temp.
  • Put printers/copiers into sleep or energy saver mode where possible.
  • Be mindful of your energy use and look for ways you can conserve.
  • Perhaps use the stairs instead of the elevator.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

The Dog Days of Summer

With temperatures reaching close to triple digits this week, below are just a few things to keep in mind during these dog days of summer:
  • Choose meals that don't contribute additional heat to your home (use a microwave or outdoor grill instead of an oven).
  • Delay running the dishwasher until after 10 p.m.
  • Delay washing clothes until after 10 p.m.
  • Turn off excess lights and keep curtains and draperies closed.
  • Turn off computers and other electrical equipment when not in use.
  • Avoid leaving doors open for extended periods of time.
  • If you're using an air conditioner, turn your thermostat up a couple degrees to save energy.
  • Consider traveling to a nearby mall, movie theater or restaurant to beat the heat.
  • Only run fans and ceiling fans when a room is occupied. Fans cool people not space.
  • Keep yourself and any children or pets hydrated.
  •  Keep in mind, this won't last... remember early May? And before we know it, fall weather will be upon us. Enjoy the diversity of the seasons in Minnesota!