Clean energy is great for the environment and so is being self-sufficient

As things started progressing with the COVID-19 nationwide lockdown, we were all hungry for some good news. Despite the general sentiment that people were feeling “lost and confused”, many of us were delighted withstories of how nature has benefitted from COVID-19 with a reduction in air pollution with people travelling less.

While this is obviously great news, there is one factor we can’t ignore.

In 2014, the major contributors to global CO2 emissions was electricity and heat production at almost 50%with Australia’s share of emissions coming in at almost 60%. Now consider that was back in 2014 and pre-COVID-19.

Carbon dioxide emmissions by sector or source world 1960 to 2014
Carbon dioxide emmissions by sector or source Australia 1960 to 2014

While it is still hard to fully understand the implications of a global pandemic on our lives, one thing is clear: COVID-19 will pass, and climate change will continue.

The good news is we can make simple behaviour changes or use tools and technologies to reduce our carbon footprint as an individual household. For example, switching off lights when there is no one in a room is a simple behavior that reduces energy usage. Using  technologies such as rooftop solar and home batteries, a household can become energy self-sufficient and this lowers their impact on the environment.

What does it mean to be energy self-sufficient?

Being energy self-sufficiency means you can get by with the resources you have without having to draw on any external resources. If you look at this from a household’s energy independence perspective, a self-sufficient household produces energy through solar panels, stores it using a home battery and uses the energy to run appliances without having to draw anything from the grid. It might sound like a relatively simple solution but this has been a total game-changer for many households located in the areas where the grid frequently fails, or for those who just want to reduce their impact on the environment.

Having solar and storage does not necessarily mean that you need to be fully disconnected from the grid. In fact, the actual connection to the grid can provide you with another dimension of self-sufficiency and enable you to share any excess energy by joining a Virtual Power Plant (VPP).

What difference does energy self-sufficiency make for a household?

#1: You don’t need to worry about rising energy prices anymore.

Does anyone else get anxiety from looking at the statistics on how energy prices have grown over the past twenty years?

Australia Energy Prices Kepp on Climbing

Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics

Although we can’t predict what the trend will be, this year’s events has clearly shown us that the best thing you can do for your household is to make it future proof. While many of us could receive pretty shocking energy bills at the end of this quarter due to the lock-down, others who have chosen to achieve energy independence will have this burden off their chest.

#2: Be the last house with the lights on in your street.

There’s another great benefit from being energy self-sufficient – you are protected from unexpected power outages. When the grid fails and this can happen due to various reasons from severe weather conditions to a grid overload, other homes in your street will be pitch black but you will still be able to power your essential appliances whether it’s a TV or a fridge with power backup feature available in your home battery.

#3: Save the planet – one household at a time.

Every cloud has a silver lining and with COVID-19 keeping us at home, we could see a great impact on the environment as the pollution from travelling has been reduced. So why not extend it to our households and make this less of a pollution source? By committing to clean energy and becoming energy self-sufficient, you can make a long-term positive environmental contribution that benefits your home, your community and the economy.