Winter this year may seem much different as more people are spending time at home, perhaps working from home or home-schooling children. If the summer was any indication, more people are focusing on home improvements and outdoor leisure. London suppliers saw a large increase in sales of backyard pools, BBQ’s and bicycles. Similarly, this winter may be the opportunity to consider taking steps to make your home more “climate ready”.
Climate ready? What does that mean? Read on……..
By improving the energy efficiency of our homes, you are also reducing your heating bills and reducing greenhouse gas emissions caused by increased energy needs. A dramatic spike globally in greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere over the past several decades has caused the climate to change. These changes affect our weather and therefore the need for climate readiness.
Helping with Climate Actions
Many Londoner’s don’t realize that the largest percentage of greenhouse gas emissions in London is from our personal vehicle use and the 2nd largest contributor is our home energy use for heating and cooling. Gasoline is the community’s largest energy expense to run those cars and we spend $1.6 billion annually and city-wide on energy costs. The average household in London, living in a single-family home, spent over $450 every month on energy in 2019. Over half of this, about $240, was spent on gasoline. Electricity accounted for about $100 per month, while natural gas was under $80 per month. Factor in that none of those dollars stay in London since all our energy sources are located outside London, any money in energy savings can be spent in London.
So if you are thinking of any home improvements during the winter and spring, consider making your home more climate resilient….and save some money too!
The cheapest energy available, is the energy we don’t use!
Inside your home:
- Install a programmable thermostat and turn the heat down to 18 C when you sleep or go to work
- Have your furnace inspected annually and remember to change or clean furnace filters every two months
- Check and repair caulking and weather stripping around windows, doors, baseboards and attic hatches to reduce heat loss and cold air drafts
- Not sure if your house is leaking warm air? Icicles forming on your eaves are a good indication of heat loss and the need for added attic insulation.
- Need a new furnace? Want more insulation? Check out the Rebates and Promotions page at www.uniongas.com for more information
Water conservation measures also help the pocket book. Here are some easy tips to ‘prep’ your home, your yard and garden and allow you to take advantage of some cost savings.
Outside your home:
- Turn off all outside water faucets and fixtures from inside your home and drain any excess water
- Disconnect, drain and store garden hoses
- Empty and turn over or store rain barrels or rainwater harvesting systems
- Drain or turn off your irrigation system
- Remove weeds and store tender bulbs from your garden
- Clean your eavestroughs of any debris such as leaves, twigs, and bird nests
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