Individual action

People sometimes ask me “What should I do?” Table 29.3 indicates eight
simple personal actions I’d recommend, and a very rough indication of the
savings associated with each action. Terms and conditions apply. Your
savings will depend on your starting point. The numbers in table 29.3
assume the starting point of an above-average consumer.

Simple action possible saving
Put on a woolly jumper and turn down your heat-
ing’s thermostat (to 15 or 17 °C, say). Put individual
thermostats on all radiators. Make sure the heating’s
off when no-one’s at home. Do the same at work.
20 kWh/d
Read all your meters (gas, electricity, water) every
week, and identify easy changes to reduce consump-
tion (e.g., switching things off). Compare competi-
tively with a friend. Read the meters at your place of
work too, creating a perpetual live energy audit.
4 kWh/d
Stop flying. 35 kWh/d
Drive less, drive more slowly, drive more gently, car-
pool, use an electric car, join a car club, cycle, walk,
use trains and buses.
20 kWh/d
Keep using old gadgets (e.g. computers); don’t re-
place them early.
4 kWh/d
Change lights to fluorescent or LED. 4 kWh/d
Don’t buy clutter. Avoid packaging. 20 kWh/d
Eat vegetarian, six days out of seven. 10 kWh/d

Whereas the above actions are easy to implement, the ones in table 29.4
take a bit more planning, determination, and money.

Table 29.3. Eight simple personal actions.