Plug-in Load - Energy Savings

Now that you have built an inventory of devices and figured out how much energy they use, what it costs, and the CO2 associated with that use, can you think of a way to reduce it?

In most cases, you won't be able to reduce the amount of power the device uses, that part is fixed once you buy it. You can almost always change how long you use it for. With this in mind, when considering purchasing a new light bulb for a lamp, look at the two labels. on the left, a typical incandescent bulb, on the right, an LED.


To compare them, we have to make sure the brightness is close; which it is (20 lumens difference). What's a lumen? The amount of visible light (to the human eye) emitted by an object. For the same brightness, the power usage of the LED is seven times less, this could result in substantial savings depending on how long the bulb is on for. This is one example of why choosing the fixed "wattage" at the start is important for energy savings.

Go through your inventory of devices and brainstorm ways energy could be saved for each device. Are people leaving their computers/laptops on overnight while not using them? Do photocopiers or smartboards have energy saving functions? Could motion sensors or other solutions be used to turn things off when people are not around or not in use?

Make a table similar to worksheet 3 and 4 that includes at least one energy saving idea for each device. Try to be as realistic as possible. Next, test your idea and calculate how much energy, money, and CO2 you could save. For the lighting example above, I could change the power being used (by switching to LED) compared to something like a computer where you will probably change how long (or what state) it is on for. Keep these two concepts in mind.

A wind turbine at the Kent Hills wind farm near Petitcodiac has a max power rating of 3MW (mega watts), or 3,000,000 Watts. Could all the energy saving ideas you envisioned, if applied across the school, come close to turning off one wind turbine?

Last modified: Wednesday, 13 January 2016, 11:39 AM