Curbing Our Energy Appetite

Powering Down One Appliance At A Time

water-powered digital alarm clock

I need an alarm clock but I don't need to use electricity. Here is the water-powered alarm clock we got yesterday.

According to the Consumer Electronics Association, in 1975 the average household had fewer than two electronic products. In 2007, the average household had 25 consumer electronic products (computers, DVD players, video game consoles, cordless phones, digital cameras, high-def televisions).

It’s going to take a lot more than energy efficient lightbulbs to make a dent in runaway energy use. It’s going to mean taking a long, hard look at what we are using electricity to do. I’ve been going room to room, looking at what’s plugged in and asking myself:

  • Is it something I really value?
  • If so, is there another way to accomplish the same task that uses less or no energy?
  • Can I power this from a renewable energy source?
non-electric carpet sweeper

carpet sweeper

In the past week, we’ve replaced 2 items that use electricity. The water-powered digital alarm clock pictured above tells you time, date, temp and has a decent, though not overly loud, alarm. You need to change the water once every two weeks to keep it running. It is not backlit – which can be both a blessing and a curse. We’ll see.

We also bought a carpet sweeper (again, from Lehmans) to reduce the use of the electric vacuum cleaner. This thing sure does a good job picking up cat hair. And I might develop some arm muscles using it… which wouldn’t be bad.

About thinkofitasanadventure

We are a 50-something couple living in the Longfellow neighborhood of Minneapolis. We attended a sustainability conference at our local high school in November 2010, with keynote speaker Richard Heinberg from the Post Carbon Institute. What we heard shocked us deeply. We finally understood the need to transition away from fossil fuels as quickly as possible. We immediately began to change the way we live. We joined together with other folks in our neighborhood to learn more, to do more and to have fun doing it! We're part of Transition Longfellow. We're choosing to change now and to "think of it as an adventure." If you are on this journey too, we'd love to hear from you.
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1 Response to Curbing Our Energy Appetite

  1. Josh says:

    Have you ever checked out the chargers from Choose Renewable? Instead of having to unplug them so that they don’t use power they just automatically shut off. Not sure how it works but they seem to do a good job. They are calledEcoChargers . I thought you might get a kick out that idea.


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