Blog to Save Energy | Alliance to Save Energy


Smart phones can make us smart about energy use.
Smartphones have become a significant part of our lives. When was the last time you walked into a local coffee shop and did not see the majority of people looking down at their devices? The cellphone has been the most rapidly adopted consumer technology in history, and there are currently 1.76 billion working smartphones around the globe, a 25 percent increase from last year. The U.S. follows the global trend, as two-thirds of consumers — an estimated 163.9 million people — use these mobile devices.
The coffee industry uses a substantial amount of energy from start to finish.
Last week, the world celebrated International Coffee Day, a day that not only provides us with an excuse to enjoy more coffee, but also intends to encourage the production and consumption of fair trade coffee. Though there is a growing consciousness of the social and economic costs associated with the coffee industry, many may not realize that the process of transforming coffee from a bean to a drink is also extremely energy-intensive. And with the average Americans drinking three cups a day, adding up to 587 million cups consumed each day in the U.S., the amount of energy used to make coffee becomes even more important to consider.
A look at House and Senate Appropriations budgets.
In June, both the House and Senate Committees on Appropriations developed and released their own recommendations for the FY2015 federal budget. Among other focus areas, the Energy and Water Development Subcommittees in both chambers have the authority to determine the budget for the Department of Energy (DOE), which includes the majority of the provisions relating to energy efficiency through the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE).
Celebrate National Energy Awareness Month during October!
October means football season, pumpkin lattes, Halloween costumes and many other fun seasonal changes. While we’re excited for all things autumn, here at the Alliance we're welcoming this new month for another reason. On September 1991, President George Bush declared October as National Energy Awareness Month, encouraging government and organizations to raise awareness of the importance of sustainably managing the nation’s energy resources.
New York City is a leader in energy efficiency policy.
We’re stopping in New York City on Monday for our latest Energy 2030 On the Road event! We’ll be garnering more endorsements to double our nation’s energy productivity, and there will undoubtedly be great dialogues with local stakeholders about maximizing the potential of reaching our goal. We’ll be live tweeting conversations from the event, but while we plan for what’s ahead, we also want to acknowledge what the City has already accomplished for a more efficient future.
New standards mean greater energy efficiency for your refrigerator.
In 2011, the Department of Energy (DOE) issued standards for home refrigerators, refrigerator-freezers and freezers to increase the energy efficiency of these commonly-used appliances. The standards reflect several recommendations made to the Department of Energy from states, home appliances manufacturers, consumer groups and efficiency proponents — including the Alliance and several of our Associates.
Even in an election year, improving federal energy efficiency is an issue that politicians from both sides of the aisle can embrace. Identical bipartisan resolutions were introduced today in the House and Senate urging a change in the scoring practice used by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) to evaluate energy efficiency performance contracts. These resolutions, introduced by Alliance Honorary Vice-Chair Chris Coons (D-DE) and Senator John Hoeven (R-ND) in the Senate and by Alliance Honorary Vice-Chair Peter Welch (D-VT) and Cory Gardner (R-CO) in the House, have 49 total sponsors including Alliance Honorary Vice-Chairs McKinley (R-WV), Kinzinger (R-IL), Shaheen (D-NH), Portman (R-OH), Collins (R-ME), Wyden (D-OR) and Markey (D-MA).
As the school year kicks off, so does the CCN.
Get your meters ready! Registration opens today for Campus Conservation Nationals 2015 (CCN) hosted by the Alliance to Save Energy, Lucid Design Group, National Wildlife Federation and The Center for Green Schools at the USGBC. In its fifth year, CCN empowers colleges across the country to reduce their water and energy use through education, feedback and programming. All of this happens during a three-week competition window each spring that after months of planning, is over in the blink of an eye. The nationwide savings are impressive — CCN 2014 saw the equivalent of 201 homes removed from the grid for a year and stopped 1.8 million 1L bottles of water from running down the drain. To top it off, the student and staff enthusiasm created by the competition is undeniably inspiring. However, when the excitement dies down, does that mean water and energy usage return to normal as well? It’s perfectly reasonable to question the sustainability of a short-term sustainability program like CCN.
Installing efficient light bulbs is an incredibly cost-effective way to save energy.

Installing energy efficient light bulbs is one of the easiest and most cost effective ways to save energy.

Recognizing the huge potential for energy savings that is possible through simple light bulb upgrades, the U.S. Congress adopted energy efficiency standards for everyday light bulbs and established a timeline for a progressive phase-out of inefficient bulbs. President Bush signed the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (EISA) into law. The standards do not ban any specific light bulb type, but stipulate that light bulbs must use at least 25% less energy.

Saving water and energy are two issues that are greatly interconnected.
California is facing one of the most severe droughts ever recorded. For the last three years, the state has been enduring water shortages, destructive wildfires, crop losses and state restrictions on water use. According to the U.S. Drought Monitor, nearly 82 percent of the state is in extreme or exceptional drought. The drought has implications far beyond California’s borders — the Golden State produces 70 percent of the nation’s top fruits, nuts and vegetables. Soon, the continued loss in agriculture due to the drought could result in increased food prices across the nation. It is estimated that the drought will inflict a total of $2.2 billion in losses for the agricultural industry.