Energy saved is more valuable than energy generated, even from renewable sources. That’s because energy saving by cutting demand often costs less than adding renewable energy. Every watt saved also has more impact, because for all the energy we generate, less than half is actually used – the rest gets lost as heat or inefficiencies in energy transportation and storage. That’s why the concept of a “negawatt,” or a watt that is cut from demand, is very important when talking about energy efficiency and sustainability.
But what’s the best way to use that information, and encourage people’s awareness of their energy use? If you thought saving money or saving the environment were the shoo-in answers, check out this TED talk by Alex Lasky, recently featured on Treehugger.com.
It turns out, thinking others are doing it, and doing it better than you, is the best way to motivate change.
Do you want to know how your negawatts are adding up? Go to the PG&E site, login to your account, and click the “my Usage” tab to see how you are doing compared to your neighbors.