Today, saving energy is increasingly critical. One reason is likely due to your monthly and yearly costs. Using energy-saving practices, you can save hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars every year.
With that being said, many people also choose to conserve energy to help preserve the environment. You’ve probably heard experts say that using less energy will help the environment. However, how does this help the environment?
This article tackles how saving energy can help the world around you. Some of the factors are obvious, but many of them aren’t.
However, each point could warrant a book on the subject, so we must condense everything.
- How Saving Energy Helps the Environment: 8 Crucial Ways + More
- 1. Fewer Fossil Fuels Burned
- 2. Fewer Resources Used to Maintain Green Energy Sources
- 3. Reducing the Load on Local Electricity Grids
- 4. Preserving Our World’s Limited Resources
- 5. Reducing the Impact of Climate Change
- 6. Preserving Natural Habitats and Animals
- 7. Reducing Air Pollution & Making People Healthier
- 8. Keeping Natural Water Sources Cleaner
How Saving Energy Helps the Environment: 8 Crucial Ways + More
Here are eight ways in which saving energy helps the environment. This list isn’t exhaustive, but it covers the most critical issues.
1. Fewer Fossil Fuels Burned
In one way or another, fossil fuels are made of oil, and many homes are powered by fossil fuels. But, whether it’s natural gas, propane, oil, or gas, burning them is not good for the environment.
First, getting those fossil fuels out of the ground is highly energy-intensive and costly. The mining, extraction, and refining of oil require tremendous energy.
Moreover, refining oil and other fossil fuels is a dirty process. Many toxic byproducts are created through these processes released into the environment.
We also have to consider the energy used to transport these fossil fuels. Whether trains, trucks, boats, or pipelines, they all use energy; fossil fuel transport also uses fossil fuel.
Then, to extract and refine fossil fuels, great swathes of land have to be destroyed, energy is used, and water is wasted. Then, when you burn fossil fuels, they create greenhouse gases released into the atmosphere.
2. Fewer Resources Used to Maintain Green Energy Sources
We’ll talk more about dirty energy sources and fossil fuels below. However, discussing renewable or green sources of energy is essential as well.
Green energy sources are much better for the environment than burning fossil fuels and other dirty energy sources. We are talking about geothermal energy, hydropower, and solar energy. They are better for the environment than using coal or fossil fuels, but this doesn’t mean they are good for the environment.
For instance, large tracts of land have been cleared to build hydro dams. Then, the land will be destroyed due to flooding from those hydro dams. Hydro dams tend to make water nearby completely unlivable for animals.
Building and maintaining wind turbines is not overly energy efficient. In addition, they contain many materials mined from the ground and then processed, which is also detrimental to the environment in several ways.
Unfortunately, so-called green energy sources aren’t always as green as we think.
3. Reducing the Load on Local Electricity Grids
Here is one of the less-obvious points that many people might not think about. Energy has to get to your home for you to use, and this is usually done through power lines and your local electricity grid. Therefore, the more electricity used, the more load the grid carries, and the grid will require maintenance sooner rather than later.
Even simple things will waste energy. For instance, if part of the electricity grid is overloaded, it might suffer damage that has to be repaired by a team of professionals. That team needs to use a car that uses energy to get to the site for the repair.
The less energy you use, the less strain you put on your electricity grid. This will therefore lead to lower maintenance and upkeep requirements.
4. Preserving Our World’s Limited Resources
Although economists don’t believe so, our world does have limited resources, and using tremendous amounts of energy reduces them.
Coal processing plants, nuclear plants, refining oil, and more use water. Even fresh water is a limited resource, and water transportation also requires energy.
Another natural resource is wood. Many people use wood to heat their homes. Unfortunately, deforestation in the world is a genuine problem.
There are many other natural resources, such as oil and coal. The bottom line is that we use more energy than the world can provide in the long run. The less energy you use now, the more of these natural resources you preserve for future generations.
5. Reducing the Impact of Climate Change
Saving energy and climate change is a topic we could write a whole book about. However, the vital thing to note is that using energy leads to climate change. This is especially the case if we talk about dirty and unreliable energy sources such as fossil fuels.
These materials’ extraction, refining, and transportation waste resources and energy. This, in turn, leads to climate change. However, what we are really talking about is burning fossil fuels.
Climate change is caused primarily by the release of carbon dioxide into the air. This causes rising temperatures, heatwaves, droughts, higher sea levels, abnormal weather patterns, increased natural disasters, smog, acid rain, etc.
The bottom line is that they’re all terrible for the environment, and they’re bad for you.
6. Preserving Natural Habitats and Animals
Natural habitats are being destroyed because we’re wasting energy. This also has to do with how we use resources.
For example, large tracts of land are destroyed by oil mining and refining processes. This is also true of coal mines. As a result, animals are either killed or driven away, and plant life dies. In addition, the mining, extraction, and refining of these materials often create very toxic byproducts that are then released back into the environment.
Even creating large-scale wind turbine facilities or hydroelectricity destroys vast swathes of land. It makes them uninhabitable for people, animals, and often for plants. Of course, seeing as many of the world’s species are at risk of extinction, this is a huge issue to tackle.
7. Reducing Air Pollution & Making People Healthier
We already talked about carbon dioxide, burning fossil fuels, and air pollution. However, we have to worry about not just climate change, rising sea levels, and increased heatwaves.
Air pollution and climate change also have severe impacts on human health. Increased levels of air pollution mean that we regularly breathe more toxic chemicals. In addition, various breathing conditions, and even cancers, can be associated with high levels of air pollution.
The more energy we use, the more fossil fuels we burn, the greater the negative impact we are placing on our own health and all beings on this planet.
8. Keeping Natural Water Sources Cleaner
The last thing we want to touch on is water. We mentioned above that the world’s natural and fresh water supplies are in jeopardy.
Coal plants, oil plants, nuclear plants, and more all release very toxic chemicals into the environment, and these often find their way back into our water sources. Many lakes and rivers in the world have been polluted by power plants to the point where they are no longer inhabitable or usable.
In addition, every step of the energy production process wastes water. Unfortunately, our world doesn’t have enough fresh water to waste, and conserving energy will help prevent this.
As you can see, saving energy can help the environment. So if you want our future generations to have a chance on this planet, now is the time to start saving energy.