Air Conditioning | Energy Star: Saving Money and the Environment
Energy Star is a program created by the U.S. Department of Energy and the Environmental Protection Agency that promotes the use of energy efficient practices and products in order to save money and protect the environment. Products with the Energy Star logo meet strict efficiency guidelines and use up to thirty percent less energy than standard products.
The Energy Star program is most noticeable to the average consumer in the form of product labeling. Small and large appliances and products that feature the blue logo on either the product or the packaging have met the guidelines set forth by the program. There is a broad array of products that are included in the program. Not only does it rate appliances, it also includes products that are designed to help increase the energy efficiency of a home or building by decreasing consumption in other ways.
In addition to products such as toasters, curling irons, air conditioning units and clothes dryers that use energy directly, there are many brands of windows, doors, roofing and insulation that are approved by the program. By properly sealing the home, these products help keep the indoor temperature regulated, therefore saving the energy that would be used by the heating and air conditioning unit.
There are also incentives offered to businesses that attempt to make their buildings more efficient. The government offers a tax deduction of up to $1.60 per square foot to owners and designers of buildings that save at least half off of the heating and cooling costs and meet the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers standards for sustainable buildings.
In 2010, participating in the program allowed Americans to save almost $18 billion on utility costs and save enough energy to avoid greenhouse gas emissions that would equate to roughly 33 million vehicles. This equals about $600 in annual savings per home just for making responsible purchasing and building decisions.
The best thing about the entire Energy Star program is that there are no disadvantages. Approved products don’t cost any more than standard products, nor do they look or function any differently. They are available in every store that sells the product that the consumer is looking for. The only difference is that they use as little as half the energy of their traditional counterparts and reduce the negative impact that humans have on the environment.
Homes, businesses, schools and factories across the nation are becoming more globally aware of the need to preserve resources and are taking action. This program provides a structured, positive plan to do so. By providing guidelines for how much energy a product may use, and incentives for businesses to make environmentally smart decisions, this program is a blueprint for a greener planet.
Proper maintenance of your air conditioner can save energy.
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