Energy Conservation in France
Energy conservation. Not using energy when you don’t have to. It truly is the “low-hanging fruit” in the fight against climate change. It costs absolutely nothing (in fact it saves you money), requires little to no effort and it is extremely effective in lowering emission of greenhouse gas.
With that in mind, the French environment ministry announced this past Wednesday that as of July 1st, 2013, “all non-residential buildings will have to switch off interior lights one hour after the last worker leaves the premises”. In addition, “all exterior and shop window lighting will have to be turned off by 1 am”. I love it!
With this simple measure, the country will save two terrawatt/hours of electricity. If, like me, you aren’t quite sure what that means, it is the equivalent of the annual electricity consumption of 750,000 homes!
Now, just for the sake of discussion, let’s assume that the ration of non-residential buildings to population is the same around the world (I know it probably isn’t, but humour me!). How many homes’ worth of electricity would a similar policy save in other countries?
- Canada: 400,000 homes
- Italy: 696,000 homes
- UK: 722,000 homes
- Germany: 936,000 homes
- Japan: 1.6 million homes
- USA: 3.6 million homes
And I could go on.
This is a simple, common sense idea that hurts no one, sacrifices virtually nothing but saves an incredible amount of energy. This is the kind of policy that every country needs.