Saving energy is sweet

24 May 2017

I’m tired of turning off lights behind my kids, of yelling at them for leaving them on. But, they’re kids. Kids do these things. They don’t care.

But what if they cared?

So I tried an experiment. I showed them the energy report, how much we spend on electricity in a full month and how much a house similar to ours spends. I tried to draw their attention to what elements of the house spend the most energy and how much it costs us.

It turns out that the electricity expenditure in April was 86,51€. Then, I showed them the cash (small bills and lots of coins – they have more impact on their brains) and told them that, from that moment on, they were going to be in charge of paying for the electricity, if they kept the consumption below that amount, the difference would be for them. Their eyes turned like oranges!

And as the days went by, unusual things began to happen. Suddenly, they started to raise blinds and open curtains to take advantage of the sunlight. I began to find the Wii and the TV turned off completely.

It was a great success!

At the end of the month, the bill was reduced to €81.27. Savings of €5.24 (or 58 kWh). It wasn’t much, but for them it was a way to generate money, and best of all, they wanted more. Then, they started to question which appliances consumed more and asked me how they could reduce consumption. Little by little, they took control of all the electronics in the house. Even their mother had to negotiate being able to dry her hair completely. 🙂

Little by little, I introduced them to new ideas about the benefits of reducing energy consumption, because in the end the world thanks us, as we contribute to the benefit of a more efficient and sustainable planet, and most importantly: being aware of our actions makes us wiser, although they only care about the extra pay they receive, for the moment.