In recent years, gas prices have steadily increased to a much higher level when compared to their past prices. Furthermore, given the political unrest between Russia and Ukraine, the situation in Europe is dire. However, it isn’t just Europe that feels the pinch in sky-rocketing gas and electricity prices — globally, there has been a massive spike in gas costs.
Thus, as the increase in gas prices steeps in, steadily reaching an all-time high, more people feel the pressure and stress when dealing with daily essentials to reduce gas usage to save money.
This immense hike in prices has been compounded not only by the political unrest between Ukraine and Europe but by the post-COVID economic recovery situation as well. Global leaders should be vocal in their support for renewable energy as it would influence others to not rely so much on natural gas.
Increasing their efforts and support for the cause of renewables could help in the overall reliance on natural gas. Furthermore, switching to renewable energy will help in sustainability efforts to combat global warming.
And, while many often associate the use of renewable energy with a counter to climate-related issues, it is also much more than that. Currently, the overconsumption of gas and energy has evolved such that it could be a safety or security-related issue.
From the situation, it is safe to conclude that energy systems are at high risk when there is an overreliance on one supplier for any key element. However, if key countries keep up with the funding for renewables, they will be able to better elevate the situation.
Some ways to do so would be to develop energy systems that integrate solar radiation and wind as both do not require any importation. If countries had started investing and developing renewable energy earlier, then there would not have been a massive decline.
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Why Invest in Energy Efficiency?
Although our gas consumption will not drop drastically overnight, it is still good to invest and develop in renewable energy sources such as wind, solar and other renewables. As such, it will allow for more alternative ways to lower gas bills.
One simple way to make an impact would be to ensure that your home is well insulated. Many energy-efficient buildings can use 75% lesser energy than most homes and offices. With such buildings, it allows one to save up a considerable amount of money.
For homes with a rich history, it is advisable to source an expert to visit the house for an audit. These experts can review the energy usage of the home and point out areas where homeowners can renovate to prevent heat loss through uninsulated attics, holes and gaps between floorboards and old broken windows.
For those who rent or are owners on a tight budget, renovation may not be the best option. As such, alternatives like filling the gaps with sealant, newspaper and other materials or adding stoppers along the gaps of the door may be a better solution.
To retain the heat in the house while keeping the heat out, investing in curtains and shutters that have insulation will do the trick. Installing a thin and inexpensive sheet of plexiglass onto the window frame inside the house will imitate the benefits of having a double-glazed window.
Other Ways to Reduce Usage
Many alternatives and ways to reduce usage may cost up to nothing, especially in terms of money. Typical energy-saving tips have been circulating amongst consumers and activists, some include taking shorter showers and not baths, turning off the lights when no one is around, and lowering the temperature while putting on a sweater.
Although many of these tips are useful, they will only work if the consumers can integrate them into their daily routine or cultivate it into a habit. Otherwise, doing so a couple of times will not greatly impact the monthly energy usage.
It is no secret that lowering the temperature on the thermostat by four to six degrees Celsius from the normal setting for about eight hours a day will allow consumers to save up to 10% a year on the costs of cooling and heating.
Oftentimes, homeowners forget about simple ways that can help reduce energy usage. With heavy reliance on electricity that was produced by the burning of gas, simple acts of hanging laundry to dry, unplugging electronics when not in use and cooking large portions of food to eat over the next few days, rather than turning on the heat to cook every mealtime, can eventually add up to a substantial amount of energy saved.
Even the act of placing the lid on a boiling pot of water can reduce energy consumption.
Watch What You Eat
Subscribing to food that is organic as well as reducing the consumption of meat will indirectly reduce gas consumption.
Natural gas is commonly used even in the industrial sector, but it is not exclusively used to power homes. Many industries use a certain component of gas in their production of packaging and in everyday items such as clothes, detergent and containers.
The production of traditional agriculture products such as feedstock, pesticides and fertilizers also requires natural gases during its production. By mixing nitrogen gas that is found in the air with hydrogen from natural gases, it produces traditional agricultural products through the process of fixation. With many industries producing a large number of products for everyday use, it cumulatively consumes about one-fifth of the world’s total gas supply.
Although there is no way to immediately reduce the overall usage of gases and energy, it is still possible to reduce and cut down via cumulative efforts. Everyone has a part to play in reducing gas consumption and usage.
Some ways include the switch of natural gases to renewable energy and the switch towards organic agriculture to reduce the overreliance on natural gases.
It is not easy to change years of habit and reliance on natural gases. However, with time and effort, it will get easier to adapt to a more sustainable way of energy consumption and we’ll all be doing our part to put a halt to global warming and the degradation of our planet.