Every year, California uses about 2,250 Megawatt hours of electricity, the second highest in the nation behind only Texas. But don’t lose hope – your choices can make a difference! As the seasons begin to change, ample opportunities arise to reduce your environmental footprint (and save some money too!). Here are our four favorite ways to reduce electricity consumption during Halloween and the holiday season:

  1. Unplug electronic devices while not in use. Known as “Phantom Load” (spooky, right?), passive electricity usage accounts for about 20% of overall electricity usage. Even when turned off, the vast majority of electric appliances drain energy. Even just unplugging a DVR while it isn’t being used can save about $40 a year.
  2. Replace your Halloween lights and displays with LED-powered alternatives. Light Emitting Diode (LED) technology vastly outperforms any other type of light generation. By replacing your holiday lights with LEDs, you can save about 87% on holiday lighting costs without compromising brightness or color.
  3. Take advantage of the Sun’s heat. The sun is more powerful than you may think, having over 1,000 watts of heating power for every square meter. Open the curtains of your southward facing windows during the day and close them at night. This alone can halve the energy required to heat your home.
  4. Don’t Abuse your thermostat! In the U.S. over 35% of energy on average is dedicated to temperature control. Getting a programmable thermostat or simply adjusting it a few degrees can make a huge difference.

This holiday season, your wallet will thank you for doing your part for the environment.