Count your kilowatt hours — and your summer vacation luggage!

Happy Canada Day!

Here are some interesting energy-use and conservation tidbits from Canadian Geographic magazine’s June 2012 insert, “Energy Use in Canada,” plus some of my own commentary:

The kilowatt hour (kWh) is a common unit for measuring energy use.  You’ll see it on your monthly hydro bill.  Next time you read your bill, consider the following:

  • One kilowatt hour runs a hot shower for three minutes.
  • One hundred kilowatt hours powers 50 loads of laundry.
  • Most of us keep appliances and electronic equipment plugged in 24/7.  If every resident of British Columbia were to unplug all their electronic gadgets and gizmos for just one hour a week, the province would save nearly 270 million kilowatt hours per year — enough to power about 24,500 homes. (Consider that the combined population of Quesnel, B.C., and Williams Lake, B.C., is 20, 839.  If every person in Quesnel and Williams Lake owned a home, this province-wide, weekly one-hour energy conservation strategy would power those homes for an entire year — and then some!)

Going on a road trip this summer?  Pack light!  Consider that:

  • for every extra 45 kilograms you carry in your car, your fuel efficiency can drop by up to two per cent.  (Forty-five kilograms is equal to 99 pounds — or two maximum-weight suitcases checked on WestJet or Air Canada!)
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