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Unplug for Climate Change

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by Jodi Lee

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We all know to turn the lights off when we leave a room can save over 74 pounds of CO2 a year, 9,144/48,025,409 metric tons of coal, 37/2,682 pounds of Hg a year, 37/10 gallons of gasoline, 74,000/1,341 kwh of energy, a 74/447 cubic meter lake, 14,800/9,387 metric tons of Pb, a 37/1,832 cubic meter container of oil, 14,800/687 acres of soil from being polluted, 3,700/1,341 metric tons of limestone, 90 pounds of air pollution per year, 23,125/4,023 tons of waste, 296/167,625 tons of fly ash, 817/500 metric tons of fossil fuels, 37 pounds of biomass, 817 kilograms of carbon monoxide, 817/5 kilograms of nitrogen oxide, 7,353/625 metric tons of life, 7,585/21,456 tons of methane, 2,451/955 metric tons of ethanol, 740/52,299 metric tons of Zn, 37/2,235 tons of coke, 817/23 tons of soda ash, 1,040/27 pounds of dust each year, 46,250/8,931 metric tons of global warming, 7,696/146,765 tons of acid rain, 9/2 pounds of particulates each year, 13,889/100,000 metric tons of solid particles, 225/16 cubic meters of rain, 6 pounds of ozone each year, 19,608/5 square meters of natural habitat potential, 3,388/75 decibels of sound intensity, 12,255/1,012 tons of steam, enough energy to power a CFL for 1,147/391,572 years, gain almost 390 pounds of O per year, over $5.00


turning off the lights before leaving a classroom for one hour could keep over 2 pounds of pollutants out of the environment


turn the TV off when we aren’t watching saves over 111/11 pounds of CO2 a year, 1,850/2,519 gallons of oil, 2,775/10,076 tons of greenhouse gases, a 37/1,639 cubic meter lake, 37/19,668 pounds of Hg a year, 37,000/4,917 kwh of energy, 111/220 gallons of gasoline, 7,400/34,419 metric tons of Pb, 7,400/2,519 acres of soil from being polluted, 1,850/4,917 metric tons of limestone, enough energy to power 3/22 rooms, 111/22 power strips, over $110.00.


turning off a tv for 1 hour could save 4,000/31 kwh of energy, 1,341/15,500 tons of co2, a 1,341/28,396 cubic meter container of oil, 1/31 pounds of mercury a year, 8/155 tons of coal, a 12/31 cubic meter lake, 33,525/7,099 tons of greenhouse gases, 1,341/155 gallons of gasoline, 800/217 metric tons of toxic lead, 357,600/7,099 acres of soil from being polluted, 200/31 metric tons of limestone, 256/31 pounds of fly ash, enough energy to power a CFL for 5/2 days, over $10.00


turning off a 60 watt light bulb for 1 hour could save 321/26 watts and 2,725/13 btu's of energy, 321/32,500 pounds of coal, 3,957/8,757,115 tons of greenhouse gases, 321/910 kilograms of toxic lead, 321/32,500 gallons of water


turning off a 100-watt light bulb for 1 hour could save 1,000/93 kwh of energy, 447/31 pounds of co2, 7,450/7,099 gallons of oil, 4/93 ounces of mercury a year, a 1/31 cubic meter lake, 447/620 gallons of gasoline, 200/651 metric tons of toxic lead, 800/93 pounds of coal, 29,800/7,099 acres of soil from being polluted, 321/520 kilograms of limestone, enough energy to power a CFL for 5 hours,


turning off a CFL for 1 hour could save 200/93 kwh of energy, 447/155 pounds of co2, 1,490/7,099 gallons of oil, a 44,700,000/7,099 cubic meter lake from being polluted, 160/93 pounds of coal, a 1/155 cubic meter lake, 2,235/28,396 tons of greenhouse gases, 4/465 ounces of mercury a year, 447/3,100 gallons of gasoline, 40/651 metric tons of toxic lead, 5,960/7,099 acres of soil from being polluted, 10/93 metric tons of limestone, over $30.00


turning off a computer for 1 hour could save 160,000/31 kwh of energy, 2,682/775 tons of co2, a 13,410/7,099 cubic meter container of oil, 40/31 pounds of mercury a year, 64/31 tons of coal, a 480/31 cubic meter lake, a 4,023/3,100 cubic meter tank of gasoline, 32,000/217 metric tons of toxic lead, 5,440,315,538/73 btu's of energy, 14,304,000/7,099 acres of soil from being polluted, 8,000/31 metric tons of limestone, enough energy to power a CFL for 100/7 weeks, almost $620.00


turning off a home could save 115,480/21 kwh and 280,000,000/3 btu's of energy, 860,326/1,603 gallons of oil, 2,887/4,200,000 tons of mercury a year, 5,774/2,625 tons of coal, a 2,887/175 cubic meter lake, 23,096/147 metric tons of toxic lead, 3,441,304/1,603 acres of soil from being polluted, 5,774/21 metric tons of limestone, $560.00


turning off a home for 1 hour could save 713/170 kwh and 900,000/73 btu's of energy, 713/680,000 pounds of mercury a year, 1,426/425 pounds of coal, a 2,139/170,000 cubic meter lake, 713/5,950 metric tons of toxic lead, 713/3,400 metric tons of limestone, 8,473/60,094,385 metric tons of fossil fuels, 900/10,147 gallons of diesel fuel


We know to choose low energy appliances, low flush toilets, and CFL lights. We know about all those ‘big’ ways to save the environment and reducing emissions.

But did you know that often the biggest energy drain in your home is from all the stuff you so conscientiously turned off? Huh? But it’s off, you claim. Yes, but is it still plugged in?

Vampire power or parasitic energy refers to the small bits of energy that continually flow through the plug and up the cord even though your appliance or doodad may be turned off. Until you unplug it or turn off the power strip that your electronics are plugged into, you have not completely stopped the flow of power.

Go tour your house. How many things are plugged in right now that you are not using? Microwaves, alarm clocks, toasters, coffee makers, toaster ovens, stereos, cell chargers, bed side lamps, blenders, kettles, air fresheners (get rid of these altogether), and the list goes on and on…

Shockingly, these small oversights are costing us billions of dollars and zillions of kilowatts. The ACEE(American Council of Energy Efficiency) and Energy Star estimates that this costs us between $1 to $3.5 BILLION dollars, and that’s in the US alone.

While it’s not practical to unplug your alarm clock every morning and reset it every night, it does make sense to unplug the toaster and coffee pot. As an added benefit, you use the switches less and your small appliances will last longer. Cell phone chargers are especially bad – in a family you may have several phones. Leaving the chargers plugged in with no phone on the other end drains power and increases your energy bill.

Consider unplugging more things if you go away for the weekend or extended vacation. Our TV has been known to be unplugged for weeks at a time in the summer. We’re not watching it so why give it energy?

This simple and easy action paves the way to a significant climate change solution. For more ‘going green’ ideas, tips, and strategies,take our free assessment.

turning off a power strip or unplugging a charger can save over 2 pounds of co2 a year, 100/687 gallons of oil, 4,000/111 kwh and 3,400,000/37 btu’s of energy, 25/458 tons of greenhouse gases, enough energy to power over 17/100,000 cars for a year, 1/37 bedroom house for an entire year, a CFL for 155/1,554 weeks, one car to travel 500/229 miles, a 1,000,000/229 cubic meter lake from being polluted, 403/78,314,400 metric tons of coal, 8/1,341 ounces of mercury a year, a 4/37 cubic meter lake, 2/5 quarts of gasoline

Happy unplugging!


Recycling in (USA, UK, Brazil, Canada, Ireland, Japan, Netherlands, Long Island)


Water resources (China) •


Water pollution (plastic particle) (USA, China, India, Brazil, Japan, New Zealand, Canterbury, The West Coast Region) •


Flood (2011 Thailand, Bangladesh, 2010 Pakistan,) •


Rainwater harvesting (UK, Kerala) •

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