Another month of my consumption challenge has passed. The challenge this month was energy. Even as the challenge was introduced I knew I was going to fail it, but let me break it down.
Contact your energy supplier and check what sources YOUR energy comes from. Also investigate what green/renewable options you have.
Check! Our supplier only delivers electricity from renewable sources – hydro, wind and biofuel. However, in a life cycle perspective wind power has pretty high CO2-emissions per produced energy, so for me that is not the best option.
Vacuum behind your fridge and freezer (and on their backs) and then defrost them – it will increase their efficiency and save energy.
Fail! Our fridge is fairly new, so it could be done, but I admit to laziness. Our freezer is old and is a freezer box, it could use defrosting, but it was just too warm, we have plenty of food in it. Yes, I’m lazy.
Check that your fridge and freezer temperature is not colder that what is really needed: +5C and -18C respectively (41F / 0F)
Check and dunno! Our fridge is at +6C. Our freezer I have no idea. I think it’s so old that there is no actual setting just on and off.
Leave nothing on standby overnight this month.
Fail! I could easily just switch off everything but it’s usually husband who goes to bed last. He doesn’t think it’s necessary and to be honest it doesn’t make that much of a difference. I know excuses… One positive thing we did last winter was to change windows in our bedroom, it was freezing before and now we don’t need to heat is as much. We usually charge our phones and the tablet overnight, but will pull the plugs when not charging.
No washing dishes under running water.
Fail! We try to stuff the machine as much as we can, so we only have a few items to hand wash every night. We don’t pile them up, so each night it’s a few things under running water. (In my defense my shower time usually averages about 5-7 minutes).
I have not bought anything this month. However, I don’t see it as a self-fulfilling goal to save all your points and have the most by the end of the year. I’m thinking that this is pretty much a challenge that can go on and on forever and then you need to buy things. For example, right now I need new Spring shoes. I will buy them, reduce my points and hopefully they’ll last me a few seasons. Next year I might need a winter jacket and no spring shoes. I’m not saying I need to stick to exactly these points, but be aware of my consumption for the years to come and spread it out. No point in having all my points by the end of the year and shop everything in January. My conclusion: I shouldn’t be afraid to spend points on things I need. Period.
With nothing bought and a failed challenge I’m still on 75 points. In April shopping will begin and I think I can do a pretty good job in the April challenge regarding paper as well.