Low Energy Lifestyles

Courtesy: Professor Bop (Flickr)
Courtesy: Professor Bop (Flickr)

Individuals, Galway Energy Agency

It is too often overlooked that the most effective, quickest and cheapest way to reduce our environmental impact is to reduce the amount of energy we use in the first place. Choices we make everyday determine how sustainably we live. Not only are these types of lifestyle greener but they are usually healthier, cheaper and often more satisfying than high energy lifestyles.

We can opt for a low energy lifestyle by making certain choices in terms of:
– how far we live from where we work or study (the nearer the better)
– how we commute to work/school/college (walking, cycling, public transport are preferable to car use and carpooling is better than single person car use). For example, tram users use only 23% of the energy of car users comparing an average loaded tram (40 passengers) to an average loaded car (1.35 passengers).
– how energy efficient our homes are (houses with a better BER (Building Energy Rating) are less wasteful)
– the food we eat (the more local the better, less processed is better, less meat is better).
– the products we buy (certain products need less energy than equivalent products)
– how frequently and how far we travel by air (the less and the shorter the better)
– living with more people is less wasteful than solo occupancy
– how we use electric showers: the lowest of the 3 power settings can save about €60 per person per year (the middle power can save about €50 per person).