“There is precious treasure and oil in the dwelling of the wise, But a foolish man swallows it up.”
To reduce the effects of climate change we all need to reduce our use of electricity and gas. This does not mean drastic changes to our lifestyles. Here are some simple tips for use in your home and church that could add up to significant savings. Some of these tips are for use at home, some in church buildings, but they are useful for both.
1: Stay warm, cut costs
Turning your home heating thermostat down by 1°C can save you as much as £60 per year as well as reducing your carbon emissions.
2: Put an extra blanket on the bed
Putting an extra blanket on the bed means you won’t get tempted to turn the heating up during the night.
3: Use the right ring for the right thing
If your using a small pan, use a small ring. Its common sense, but it will reduce the impact your cooking has on the planet.
4: Shrink your bills, not your clothes
90% of a washing machine’s energy expenditure is spent on heating the water, so wash at 30°C to save a substantial amount of energy. Click Here for the ultimate guide to washing at 30 degrees.
5: Hang up your laundry
Air-dry your laundry rather than tumble drying it, especially in the summer.
6: Don’t over tumble.
If you do use a tumble dryer take them out before they’re completely dry – they’ll iron much quicker and you’ll use less energy. Some modern tumble dryers monitor the level of moisture in the clothing and can stop when it reaches ironing level.
7: Switch it off and save
Try to switch something off before you switch something else on. It’s not always possible, but it is a good energy saving habit to get into. Make sure you switch off lights when you leave a room.
8: Learn how your heating controls work
70% of most churches energy is used heating their building. Ideally, the heating should be turned on so that comfort temperature is reached just as the congregation arrives and turned off as soon as the service ends, with thermostatic control in between. Accurate control of this timing is essential. Automatic controllers are available but they need careful setting.
9: Do an energy survey.
Get some advice from the Home Energy Efficiency Programmes for Scotland (Click Here for further details), or Carry out your own walk through energy audit of your church building (download a survey form here).
10: Switch to LED lighting
Consider changing your church light fittings to LED ones. These use about a quarter of the energy of compact fluorescents and because they last so long they reduce maintenance costs for lighting situated in high ceilings.
This material was researched and produced by Gordon Hudson at Eco-Congregation Scotland.