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The 7th annual National Energy Efficiency Day falls on Wednesday, October 5, this year. Since its launch in 2016, this special day to reflect on our energy use has always taken place on the first Wednesday of October.
While energy efficiency is a cause worth celebrating all by itself, the main purpose of this annual event is to generate greater energy awareness that translates into energy efficient habits that last all year long. This year the coalition of organizers behind the event have a simple, overarching message: "Save Money. Cut Pollution. Create Jobs."
If you're interested in specific ways you can get in on the #EEDay2022 action, we've outlined several ways below.
How can I celebrate Energy Efficiency Day?
If you're interested in specific ways you can get in on the #EEDay2022 action, we've outlined several ways below. We'll start with the smallest, simplest ways you can participate around your home and then consider larger ways you can get others involved.
1. Start small. Start with you.
The best way to start your observance of #EEDay2022 is with reflection.
Consider your daily routine for how much energy it requires. Are there any energy-intensive habits you have that you could cut back on or forego altogether? How about leaving the lights or TV on when no one's around? Maybe keeping the thermostat cooler or hotter than it needs to be? Perhaps keeping the fridge door open for 15 minutes at a time while you debate what you want to eat?
Make a list of behaviors you could modify to use energy more responsibly and hold yourself accountable. Here are some ideas to get you started.
- Walk, bike or use public transport instead of driving your own car.
- Make use of natural air and light for cooling your home and avoiding artificial lighting.
- Check to see if your thermostat and water heater are set to U.S. Department of Energy recommendations.
- Replace any old incandescent lightbulbs to more efficient LEDs.
- Use smart power strips that prevent unused devices from using "phantom energy".
- Improve your insulation and weatherproof any leaky spots in your home's exterior.
- Switch your home over to a 100% renewable energy plan.
- If you really want to get serious about being energy efficient, you could even hire an energy efficiency consultant to give you a home energy audit and personalized recommendations for energy efficiency.
2. Get your business on board as well.
Modifying your own habits to be more energy efficient is great and perhaps the most easily accomplished item on this list of ways to celebrate #EEDay2022. Your life is your own responsibility, after all.
That said, businesses and corporations often operate on a much larger scale than your household and have significantly greater energy needs. For example, the top ten largest tech companies, among them Samsung, Alphabet (Google), Microsoft, Meta (Facebook), and Apple, used a combined 92,598,000 kWhs in 2021 – that's equal to nearly 9,000 U.S. households. That's why it's critical to encourage them to improve their efficiency as well.
The easiest company for you to encourage to celebrate #EEDay2022 is your own. Talk to your boss or organize a group of colleagues to petition corporate leadership to observe the day. Have your business add their name to the list of participating organizations. On the official Energy Efficiency Day website, you can also find a collection of resources for improving your business's energy use, as well as a social media toolkit to help your business spread the word on social media. You'll definitely want to make any energy-efficient improvements known to your customers, as these values will resonate with many of them and boost your reputation in their eyes.
3. Urge your town or city to issue a proclamation.
A similarly audacious way to celebrate #EEDay2022 is to get your local elected leaders to issue a proclamation that your hometown or city is observing Energy Efficiency Day. Such an official announcement will, on the one hand, encourage residents and local businesses to conduct their own energy audits. On the other hand, it may also spur local environmental, non-profit and other relevant organizations to conceive of their own unique ways to celebrate, like with a ride-your-bike-to-work event or a tree-planting campaign.
4. Spread the word using #EEDay2022 on social media.
You've probably noticed that throughout this article we've used the hashtag #EEDay2022. That's because that's the official hashtag for Energy Efficiency Day this year. To generate greater awareness about using energy responsibly – you know, what the day is all about! Another thing you can do is include the hashtag on any social media posts you make related to the day. This will help others learn about this important day and maybe experience some helpful FOMO that will make them want to join in next year.
Energy efficiency should be a year-round lifestyle.
Like any other day, Energy Efficiency Day is only 24 hours long. However, its intent is to create changes that last year-round and well into the future because the viability of our planet depends on it. If you'd like to learn more about how you could live a more energy efficient lifestyle, browse the resources available at EnergyEfficiencyDay.org/learn-more.