Earth Day 2012 initiative
As Earth Day approaches this month on April 22, the IAVM Sustainability and Young Professionals committees want to encourage IAVM members to do a little more this month — and this year.
As the thought of being sustainable can be overwhelming, IAVM will be assisting members in starting and continuing green initiatives by providing advice, tips and resources.
One of the easiest places to start is reducing energy consumption around the home and office.
Approximately 10 percent of a typical home's energy consumption is attributed to phantom/standby power. Standby power is electrical power used by appliances and equipment while switched off or not performing their primary function. Any appliance that has a digital clock, appliances with a standby light, cell phone chargers, laptop computer chargers or remote controls will use electricity — "phantom load" — even when they are shut off. The only way to stop the usage is to unplug the device or using a power strip and using the switch on the power strip to cut all power to the appliance.
Electricity is very often generated by combustion of hydrocarbons (oil, coal, gas) or other substances, which releases substantial amounts of carbon dioxide, implicated in climate change, and other pollutants such as sulfur dioxide, which produces acid rain. Standby power is a significant contributor to electricity usage. Phantom electricity is estimated to account for 5 billion kWh per year in the United States or the equivalent of one 500 MW power plant. As electricity consumption increases, more power stations are needed, with associated capital and running costs.
Easy tips for reducing carbon footprint:
For more information, visit IAVM's Earth Day Initiative.