12 Months of Going Green: Unplug for the Planet April

wildlife conservation, wild animals

When You Unplug You are Taking Action for Wildlife
Most electricity used in homes come from the mining and burning of fossil fuels such as oil or coal. The act of mining often threatens the habitats of many species we love. The more we save, the better for wildlife. Around the world, people are getting creative about saving energy. Kibale Fuel Wood Project (supported by Oakland Zoo) works with people living near Kibale National Park in Uganda to find ways to save energy. Their solution? Creating fuel-efficient 'rocket stoves' out of clay and other local, easy to source materials. These stoves are low cost, simple to build, and cook food quickly with about 1/3 of the wood used in traditional cooking fires. This adds up - 8,921 lbs. of wood are saved each day, (3.3 million pounds per year!). Using less firewood saves the animals and habitat of Kibale National Park. Eco-briquettes are another brilliant idea. Made out of farm waste (such as banana peels and peanut shells) and industrial waste from tea factories, such as paper and sawdust, these eco-briquettes burn longer, hotter, and with less smoke than wood. If they can be industrious and creative, so can we!

Get the Facts

  • 40% of appliance energy used is being drawn (vampired) out of outlets when appliances are plugged in, but not in use.

  • Putting computers in sleep mode during the day can cut energy by 70%.

  • Standby power use is responsible for 1% of global CO2 emissions - 320 million metric tons per year.

  • Air pollution from coal shortens over 1,000,000 lives worldwide.

You Can Too

Tips You Can Use at Home

  • Unplug your appliances when not in use to save energy and money on your PG&E bill!

  • Smart Strips are power strips that automatically cut power to peripheral devices such as printers, sound systems, satellite receivers, etc. when a main device like a computer or a TV is turned off.

  • Kill-a-Watt meters will measure how much energy an appliance is using, and will convert that energy into dollars spent so you can budget energy efficiently!

  • Consider a Solar Power Purchase Agreement! You allow a solar company to install solar panels on your property, and then you purchase the power produced. This allows you to use solar power without the high overhead costs of purchasing your own panels.

Download a stylish (and printable) PDF version of this Green Tip sheet here