Sustainability is about meeting our needs at the present without damaging the ability of future generations to meet their needs. When it comes to sustainability and environmental conservation, many advancements in technology can help improve energy efficiency and water conservation, while also reducing your carbon footprint, minimizing waste, and providing cost savings. Let's look at some of the ways technology can be used in your home and business to help you lead a more sustainable, greener lifestyle.
INSTALL A SMART THERMOSTAT
According to Eurostat, on average, more than half of each European household’s annual energy consumption is used for heating and cooling. And furthermore, this is an area where many people tend to waste a significant amount of energy and money. You can reduce energy consumption for heating and cooling by sealing drafty doors and windows, changing air filters often, and retiring old HVAC equipment.
Also, by installing a smart thermostat, you can reduce your carbon footprint while saving on your energy bills. You can set this type of thermostat to only turn on the heat or air conditioning when someone is at home. You can also set it to shut off an hour or so after you go to sleep. And of course, if you forget to turn it off when you are away from the house, you can use an app to shut it off with your smartphone.
SWITCH YOUR LIGHTING
According to LEDone, lighting creates 17 percent of carbon emissions. However switching to LED bulbs can help. Replacing just one incandescent bulb with an LED bulb can save 6 tons of household emissions each year. LED bulbs also have a significantly longer life than traditional bulbs, therefore reducing your carbon footprint even further.
Like smart thermostats, smart lighting can save energy. Smart lighting systems can allow you to adjust the brightness of your lights as well as turn them on and off. You can even find smart light bulbs with built-in motion sensors that stay off unless someone enters the room, which is especially useful in less trafficked areas of your home. Smart lighting can be controlled by your smartphone, tablet, computer, or voice assistant program.
USE CLOUD COMPUTING
Some studies indicate that cloud computing significantly reduces the energy footprint for information technology. Using cloud computing reduces the real estate needed to house servers, optimizes hardware resources, and maximizes energy efficiency. With cloud computing, a number of virtual servers are hosted on one powerful server. Cloud facilities also use very highly efficient systems to manage the environment, so they don’t use the tremendous amounts of energy that are used to control traditional, ice-cold server facilities.
SAVE WATER WITH TECHNOLOGY
Tankless water heaters, low-flow toilets and showerheads, and energy-efficient washing machines and dishwashers can help you conserve water in your home. And you can save on outdoor watering as well. HomeSelfe estimates that using a smart sprinkler system can save 50 percent on your outdoor water usage. With these systems, you can schedule their run times based on the weather forecast, thus avoiding overwatering, and control them from your smartphone or computer at any time.
To avoid massive leaks, flooding, and water damage in your home, you can install leak detectors which are connected to your smartphone. These detectors monitor moisture around pipes and notify you at the first sign of any leak or condensation.
Technology is changing our lives in amazing ways. To reduce your carbon footprint, save energy, lower water consumption, and live a more sustainable lifestyle, you can use everyday tech to your advantage. Though gadgets and electronics can’t do it alone, they can provide the assistance you need to start living more clean and green.