<a href="https://www.greenlifestylemag.com.au/blogs/julie#">Green challenges</a>

Green challenges

Thinking global and acting local, Julie Grundy takes on any challenge we throw at her.

Cut 10% of your electricity emissions with the flick of a switch

Credit: iStockphoto

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It's just a little red light, isn't it? A little digital clock on your microwave or DVD player? Surely it can't be that bad for the environment!

But it's the little things that really add up over time. When you turn your electronics off with the remote, they still draw electricity - they're built that way so that you can flick them on again in an instant using the remote again. Since they're doing it anyway, they might as well show you the time, or a little message, if they've got an LED display.

This month's G Magazine tells us how much damage this does, just for our convenience: 6.5 million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions across Australia each year! No wonder we're one of the most energy-hogging countries on Earth!

There's also your wallet to consider - why are you paying for this electricity if you're not even using it? By switching off at the wall you're saving yourself about $5 a month. Again, it doesn't sound like much now, but if you think about how much you'll spend on it over the years, and all the more interesting things you could be doing with your money, it's a smart change to make in your day-to-day life.

Standby Saturday is a website that encourages us all to make switching off at the wall a regular habit.

They mention that making sure you aren't using any standby power can help when there are brown-outs and black-outs due to excess power usage in our cities, which I hadn't considered before. They offer assistance to businesses and schools to help reduce your standby power load, which is another area where we could make a lot of improvement with very little effort.

If you're trying to reduce your personal carbon footprint, getting rid of that standby drain will cut up to 10% of your electricity-related emissions. If you're already a wall-switcher, maybe your challenge could be to get better practices happening at your workplace. It's well worth it!