Change the World Wednesday – 26th Jun

It doesn't look like much, but when the kids get hold of it...

It doesn’t look like much, but when the kids get hold of it…

This week it wasn’t my neighbour’s dog that littered the praça, but the local kids. One of the neighbours had put out the polystyrene packaging from a new fridge in the kerbside rubbish. The kids found it and broke it into a zillion pieces, it looked like it had been snowing in the praça.

I spent an hour and cleaned up the area in front of my place, about a quarter of the praça, the hardest hit part. It nearly killed me, but when one neighbour showed his appreciation, a bottle of beer, the near death experience was worth it.

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This week’s CTWW, is one that I have already taken in hand, mostly.

This week, find at least one way to reduce energy use in your home. Need some ideas? If you have an incandescent light bulb, replace it with a LED or CFL. If your computer, modem and accessories are always on, try turning them off for a time. Try using table top appliances like a crock pot, toaster oven or steamer instead of your oven. If you use air conditioning or heat, try adjusting it by a couple of degrees. Unplug cell phone chargers, coffee makers or electronic docking stations. The goal is to take one step more to reduce energy use.

Ghostly white light

I have long resisted energy efficient light bulbs in favour of the incandescent ones, on two grounds. Firstly, the ghastly white light, secondly the environmental cost of disposal or breakage.

I did try one about eight years ago, but found that it didn’t last any longer than a regular bulb, about three months. Considering the cost, it just wasn’t worth it and gave up the idea, resisting it ever since.

Recently, I have had to replace my regular bulb three times in as many months. In frustration, I got a CFL type. At first the horrid white light was annoying, but I have got used to it.

When the next bulb blew in the living room, I replaced that with a CFL too. Once again, it took some getting used to the glare while watching TV, but now I don’t notice it…. so much.

I will continue the replacement programme as other bulbs blow.

My one appliance that has a standby feature is the TV. I don’t use it, I manually switch the set off instead of using the remote control ‘Off’. My TV spends more time Off, than On, there’s not a lot that interests me on Brazilian TV, except the news.

Basically, my home is devoid of electrical appliances. The kitchen has a fridge and a blender (the stove is gas); the living room  has the TV and a 12″ fan; the bedroom/office a 15″ fan and a PC which is 24/7, but I manually switch off the screen at night or when I am out of the house. My battery rechargers are disconnected when not in use (I have one for the cell phone, and one USB for the camera). There are only six light bulbs in the house, so my energy usage is pretty minimal.

So that’s it, challenge met.




9 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Alex Jones on June 26, 2013 at 11:01 am

    The immediate gain from saving electricity is a lower energy bill, win for everyone.



  2. Posted by Kipley herr on June 26, 2013 at 12:07 pm

    We shied away from the CFL for the same reasons, but found they are now available in softer shades… unfortunately they can not be used well in lights with many in our home are.



  3. I can’t bear CFLs because the ones I had were too yellow and the flickering annoys my sensitive eyes.
    However, I love, love, love LEDs because they are like incandescents and I have to admit to liking the incandescent light quality 😉
    Sounds like your electricity bill must be really tiny; I’d love that – ours is huge…



    • >mrs green, I am a newbie to these CFLs, just trying them after so long resisting the move. I should perhaps look for LEDs, I haven’t seen them in Brazil, yet.

      I agree, the incandescent light quality is far superior.

      In USDs my power bill is about $35-40 per month.




  4. Other than the fact that you own a tv, my electric usage appears very similar to yours. I don’t care for the CFLs, although I have some, I have been switching mine out with LEDs which I like much better and they are better for the environment.



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