If one of your New Year’s resolutions was to be more eco-conscious this year, the easiest place you can start is by re-assessing your energy choices and the impact that they have on the environment. Renewable energy is energy that’s created using earth’s inexhaustible and naturally replenishing resources. The major types of natural energy sources include wind, solar, geothermal, hydropower, and biomass.
Thanks to Energy Choice and through tools like renewable energy certificates (RECs) or solar panels, you have various options when it comes to powering your home. In fact, a comprehensive study by the Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) shows that the U.S. can generate most of its electricity from renewable energy by 2050.
So you might find yourself wondering – what’s so great about powering your home in a more sustainable way? We’ve outlined below some of the top benefits and why it’s something you should consider supporting in some form or another as you kick off your new year.
Less global warming
- Most renewable energy sources produce little to no global warming emissions, even when considering “life cycle” emissions of clean energy (including manufacturing, installation, operation, etc). Increasing the supply of renewables would allow us to replace carbon-intensive energy sources
Job creation and other economic benefits
- Compared with fossil fuel technologies, the renewable energy industry is much more labor intensive. This means that, on average, more jobs are created from renewable sources than from fossil fuels
- Because renewable energy uses primarily indigenous resources, most of the energy dollars are kept at home and thus help us diversify our energy supply
- The taxes paid by renewable energy companies also strengthen the area’s economic base, ultimately reducing the burden on individual taxpayers in the community
Renewable energy is inexhaustible
- Strong winds, sunny skies, plant matter, heat from the earth, and fast-moving water can all provide a continuous supply of energy
Good for you for including our planet as part of your 2019 New Year’s resolution! Here are a few additional ideas for living a more sustainable year:
- Be more energy efficient (this can be easily accomplished with some simple lifestyle modifications and home upgrades)
- Start composting your food scraps, not only at home but in the office
- Opt for a greener commute (biking, walking, carpooling, and choosing public transportation are sustainable alternatives to driving alone)
- Say no to plastic and opt for reusables
- Choose cloth over paper
- Find alternatives for throwing away (reusing/upcycling and donating old items are all great options)
- Shop locally
- Make sure that you’re recycling everything that can be recycled (including electronics, batteries, etc)
- Reduce your consumption of meat and other animal products (an easy way to start is by beginning a Meatless Monday tradition in your home)
- Instead of buying new (books or a lawnmower, for example) borrow from a friend or neighbor
- Opt out of junk mail and sign up for paperless billing
- Grow your own produce
If you live in a deregulated energy state, you have the option to choose from different energy suppliers, like Kiwi energy for example. We purchase renewable energy certificates (RECs) to offset your electricity usage. RECs are contractual instruments that represent the full suite of attributes of 1 Megawatt-hour of renewable energy generation on the electricity grid. Click here to learn about Kiwi Clean + Wind REC, our electricity plan that’s matched 100% with Green-e Energy Certified Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) sourced from national wind.