Thinking Green

Unplug Appliances and Electronic Devices

By: Danny Lipford

While a television, stereo equipment, or computer may be turned off, they’re still drawing energy from your home. It’s called “phantom power” and it uses about 450 kilowatt hours of electricity in every home each year. Add up all the homes in the U.S. and you’re talking about the output of 26 power plants!

When you consider that every kilowatt hour releases almost 1½ pounds of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, the problem is magnified even more. To prevent this waste of electricity and increase in pollution, unplug appliances and electronic devices when not in use, or plug them into a surge protector so you can turn off several at once.

Print   Video Transcript

When you look around this room, I bet you wouldn’t realize that energy is being wasted. Not from the windows or lack of insulation, though. The energy waste is coming from these appliances. The television, stereo equipment and computer may be turned off, but they’re still drawing energy from your home. It’s called Phantom Power and it uses about 450 kilowatt hours of electricity in every home each year. Add up all the homes in the U.S. and you’re talking about the output of 26 power plants! And, when you consider the fact that every kilowatt hour produces almost a pound and a half of carbon dioxide, then you can understand why it’s important to reduce that number. The very simplest thing you can do is unplug any appliance when it’s not being used or plug a group of appliances into a surge protector that you can turn off. An inconvenience? Yes, but one we can all live with.



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