Looking for Unique Holiday Gift Ideas? Give Energy Star!
Give the Gift of Energy Efficiency This Holiday Season!
It is gift-giving season once again, and many of us are struggling to find those last-minute, one-of-a-kind gifts. If a blanket with sleeves or a fruit of the month club membership is not exactly what you are looking for, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency wants you to shop Energy Star to help round out your holiday shopping list.
The average American household produces nearly twice as much greenhouse gas emissions as an automobile. By purchasing Energy Star rated products, you can reduce these emissions by as much as one-third and dramatically cut energy costs. It is a simple, easy way to help your family and friends save money and fight global climate change.
Home entertainment is always a winner when it comes to gift giving. Energy Star puts its label on just about anything you will find in the home entertainment aisle, from surround sound systems to TVs to Blu-ray disc players to stereos.
If you are shopping for computers, printers, scanners, laptops, multi-purpose devices or other home office equipment this year, look for the Energy Star label. Your gift of Energy Star home office equipment can save the recipient up to $350 over the lifetime of some products. These devices also have built-in power management features that can help users save even more.
Energy Star Battery-Charged Devices
Energy Star even lends its seal to products that require battery chargers. These items – like digital cameras, electric shavers, power tools, hand vacuums, video game controls, and mobile phones – use 35 percent less energy compared to similar devices that use traditional chargers.
Remind the recipient that old battery chargers are accepted by most electronics recycling programs or, better yet, offer to turn in their old charger for them as part of the gift.
Other Ways to Save This Holiday Season
- Holiday Decorating: Look for the Energy Star seal on LED holiday lights and lighted décor. Qualified strings of LED lights use 75 percent less electricity than traditional lights and are available in a wide range of colors, shapes and sizes. They are also cooler to the touch, last longer than traditional bulbs, stand up to the elements better, and are more shock-resistant.
- Recycle Outdated Electronics: When old electronics are replaced by new Energy Star products, it is always a good idea to recycle the outdated items. Recycling electronics allows the valuable parts of these items to find new life, while the potentially harmful elements are disposed of safely. If you need more information about programs in your area, check out the EPA website for the Plug-In to eCycling initiative.
- Unplug Unused Electronics: Most of us don’t realize that electronics continue to draw energy – and cost us money – as long as they are turned on or plugged in. If you aren’t using something, turn it off; if your battery-operated device is fully charged, unplug it. Using power strips makes it easy to manage multiple devices at once, and you can turn them all off with the flip of a single switch.