• Three Easy Ways to Conserve Energy at Home

    Here are three easy tips that make life more pleasant and relaxing while also conserving precious energy at home:

    #1: Unplug Your Life

    First, plug the energy drain. Remember to unplug cell phone chargers and other household gadgets when they aren't being used, because those silently drain away juice while adding to your utility bills. Next, give yourself some healthy unplugged time. Instead of doing activities that consume more electricity like those that use computers, video game boxes, or television, replace those activities with others that can be just as much fun. Take a walk or bike ride in the evening, get together with friends and family and play cards or board games, or attend that great yoga class you've been postponing.

    #2: Cut Down on Yard Work

    Going green is a whole lot more fun when it means less yard work, so set up your landscape to be more sustainable and self sufficient. Mulching reduces the amount of watering (and weeding) you have to do, and replacing part of your lawn with flowerbeds, graveled walkways, or an outdoor patio or deck can greatly reduce the amount of necessary lawn mowing. Lawnmowers are, believe it or not, one of the biggest consumers of clean energy in the USA. According to the EPA they cause five percent of our nation's air pollution. That's roughly equivalent to what 43 automobiles produce in a year.  

    #3: Enjoy a Candlelit Dinner

    One of the best ways to use less electricity around the house is to fan the sparks with scheduled or impromptu candlelit dinners. Just by turning out the lights and turning on the ambience (and the romance) you can save a significant amount of energy, while enjoying a much more pleasant evening at home. Of course if you have children to feed it might help to redefine the activity by calling it a campout night. To make the event more convincing for your kids, pitch a tent in the family room and grill outdoors on the balcony or in the backyard - but don't forget to include "s'mores" for dessert.

    Adopt these three ideas and you'll make the earth a more sustainable planet while controlling energy costs, shrinking your energy consumption footprint, and adding more enjoyment to your personal life.

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  • The Benefits of Natural Gas
    With the ever increasing concerns about conservation and fuel efficiency, many consumers have been hearing that natural gas is better choice for their homes than electric. Ever wonder why? Compared to electricity, coal, and oil, natural gas is cleaner, more efficient, cost effective, and better for the environment.

    Natural Gas is Clean

    Unprocessed natural gas contains several chemicals including methane, propane, ethane, and pentane. When utility companies process natural gas they remove everything except the methane. Unlike coal and oil, which release several potentially harmful chemicals when burned, the only byproducts from natural gas are carbon dioxide and water vapor. Both of these byproducts are safe, which is why natural gas is considered a clean fuel.

    Natural Gas is More Efficient

    Currently most electricity in the United States comes from coal. Coal not only produces far more pollution than natural gas, it is also much less efficient. Less than 30% of the energy produced in coal-fired electricity ever reaches consumers. In contrast more than 90% of the natural gas produced is delivered for consumers' use - making it three times more efficient. But this impressive efficiency doesn't stop there. In the kitchen, natural gas provides more accurate temperature control in cooking and delivers better heat distribution for baking. This is why the vast majority of restaurants use gas for preparing meals.

    Natural Gas is Cheaper

    The Department of Energy estimates that natural gas costs less than 30% of the cost of electricity. Take clothes drying as an example. In an electric drying it costs about 30-40 cents to dry each load. Using a gas dryer that same load of laundry costs 15-20 cents - half the cost of electric. According to the Department of Energy's projections for fuel costs this year, natural gas will cost approximately $11.12 per unit. This is significantly lower than the estimated costs for electricity ($33.41), oil ($16.22), or propane ($21.02).

    For consumers and the environment, natural gas is a fuel source that offers considerable advantages over electric, coal, and oil. Natural gas provides a clean, safe energy source that is not only better for the environment, but better for consumers' wallets as well.
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