Earth Hour

By Katie Murray, ZooTampa Green Team

Did you know 75% of the electricity used to power electronics such as TVs, computers, and kitchen appliances is consumed while products are turned off? An estimated 15 trillion watts of power are used world-wide at any given time, that’s the equivalent of ten billion 100-watt light bulbs being used at the same time!

Many of our daily activities contribute to greenhouse gas emissions, and these emissions make up our carbon footprint. It may come as a shock, but at this very moment—simply by reading this blog—you are contributing to your carbon footprint!

There are things you can do to lessen your footprint which include: shutting off your computer when you leave work for the day, opting for LED lightbulbs, unplugging idle electronics, turning off lights when you leave a room, and insulating your home properly, among many others.

There is one more SIMPLE thing you can do to lessen your carbon footprint- celebrate Earth Hour on March 30th from 8:30pm-9:30pm in your time zone. Earth Hour is the largest grassroots movement for the environment, inspiring people like you and me to take action for the planet! Be a part of the conversation simply by unplugging. Switch off those lights and any non-essential electronics.

So what do you do when you have no electronics and lights for ONE WHOLE HOUR? Well, go old school: play cards, tell scary stories, curl up with a book by candlelight or hit the sack early that night. We’ve all experienced a power outage before, so think of this as a self-induced power outage and make the best of it in honor of the planet we love!

If this wasn’t convincing enough, check out these facts that will leave you even more shocked:

  • 48 people riding bikes for 24 hours can generate enough power to run a TV for ONE WHOLE WEEK!
  • The energy it takes to conduct 10 searches on Google could power a 60-watt light bulb. At any given time the energy used by the search engine could power 200,000 homes.
  • Americans waste an estimated $300 billion on inefficient appliances, drafty windows and doors, poor insulation, and other fixable energy wasters!
  • The most energy efficient appliance in most kitchens? The Microwave! Microwaves use one-third of the wattage the average oven uses.

 

Interested in finding out your carbon footprint? Visit: https://www3.epa.gov/carbon-footprint-calculator/.