How does your child tackle our humid weather? Does he or she have the air-conditioning on at full blast at home or rummage through the refrigerator constantly for cold drinks? Before the next time your child reaches for the aircon remote control, consider sharing with him or her about the benefits of saving electricity.
Here are three main reasons why we think it’s important to do so.
#1 Energy usage impacts the world we live in
We’ve all heard about global warming. But lest you think it’s an issue only world leaders need to worry about, climate change is something that everyone, even little kids, can play a part in making a difference.
In 2018, the National Environment Agency (NEA) reported that Singapore’s household electricity consumption has increased by about 17% over the last decade and aircons consume about 24% of the total electricity in a typical home. Higher energy consumption is one of the main culprits of climate change. Because when power plants burn fossil fuels to produce more energy, they emit more toxic fumes and greenhouse gases that contribute to the earth’s rising temperatures and sea levels.
In fact, our low-lying island state is particularly vulnerable to rising sea levels. Land could become even scarcer and our children’s generation may find the cost of owning a home more exorbitant in future. Also, there could be an increase in flash floods, disrupting our daily lives. Imagine how inconvenient it would be to have your car stuck in flood waters while driving your children to school!
What’s more, rising temperatures unfortunately contribute to more sweaty, uncomfortable bodies in our already humid country. As it is, 2017 was recorded as the warmest year not influenced by El Nino and temperatures are set to increase even further in the future due to climate change. When the weather gets too hot, our kids will have to reduce their time spent playing outdoors due to the risk of heat injuries, or they may crave more cold treats like ice cream or chilled soft drinks, which end up being bad for their health.
What you and your family can do: Try to reduce the number of hours your aircon is switched on at home. Teach your kids to set the temperature at 25 degrees C or higher if they need to use the aircon. You may also opt to use a less energy-consuming appliance such as a fan instead. Other eco-friendly habits, such as switching off lights when leaving a room, refraining from opening a fridge door too often, watching less TV or taking shorter hot water showers, can also contribute to saving electricity and cutting down our carbon footprint.
#2 Energy conservation protects the things that kids love
Children are fascinated by colourful sea creatures and animals that live by the sea. But a warming planet is jeopardizing marine life and many species have become endangered as a result. Global warming is most evident in the Artic where ice is melting and the existence of our beloved polar bears are threatened. Elsewhere, reduced shorelines due to rising water levels prevent sea turtles from laying and hatching their eggs on the beach.
Closer to home, rising temperatures in Singapore have been known to cause plankton bloom that wipe out tonnes of fish at our coastal fish farms. Incidences like these threaten our food sources; in the long run, families will have to pay more for fish and the little ones may not get to eat their favourite fish and chips as often!
What you and your family can do: Inspire your kids to be guardians of the oceans! Bring them to visit places like S.E.A. Aquarium to learn more about marine creatures and also about conservation. Visit Nemo, a.k.a. the clownfish, and learn how climate change causes coral bleaching, and in turn reduces the population of sea anemones living on coral reefs that clownfish depend so much on for protection and food. Alternatively, visit the library to borrow books about creatures affected by climate change, e.g. sea lions and penguins and learn how our actions can affect their living habitats and existence.
#3 Saving electricity = Saving money
Every dollar and cent saved on utility bills contributes to reducing family expenses. In the long run, this could leave room for investment in other areas, such as your child’s education fees or treats for your kids.
According to statistics by the Energy Market Authority (EMA), the average household electricity consumption was 444.3 kWh per month in 2017, which amounts to approximately $90.19 in monthly electricity bills, based on SP Group’s electricity tariff for December 2017.
How does your family’s electricity usage compare to the average household? This information is usually indicated on your monthly utilities bill to give you an idea whether you’re using more than the national average. Even if you’re within the average range, there will always be room to improve.
What you and your family can do: Start your family’s own “Save Electricity Challenge”. Show kids the electricity bill for the previous month, and work together to conserve electricity and review the efforts in the following billing month. While being motivated to reduce the numbers, kids will also learn ways to make their actions count.
Want to save even more on electricity bills?
With the introduction of the Open Electricity Market (OEM) this year, you can now choose to switch from SP Group to a different electricity company, and enjoy savings in the process.
Switching is super easy too! DBS and POSB have launched Electricity Marketplace, a platform that allows DBS/POSB customers to easily switch their electricity company in three simple steps.
Just select a plan, login to DBS/POSB digibank, and switch! Plus, the forms are pre-filled. Simply confirm your details and you can even set up automated payments right away.
Switch conveniently and find out how you can potentially save up to $300* a year on electricity bills today at https://go.dbs.com/sg-empksp.
*S$300 savings a year is based on the average electricity consumption of a 5-room household in 2017, electricity tariff in Oct 2018 and 23% savings.