Articles on Energy efficiency

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Australia’s new National Construction Code doesn’t go far enough in preparing our built environment for climate change. Sergey Molchenko/Shutterstock

Don’t forget our future climate when tightening up building codes

Fires and building failures highlighted serious gaps in Australian building regulations. But recent revisions and recommendations still fall short of preparing our buildings for climate change.
The more laundry you do, the more you can save with efficient washers. Rawpixel/Shutterstock.com

Not all consumers are equal – in terms of what they save by using efficient appliances

People who use an appliance a lot save more from an energy efficient model. With the right app, they could easily get a sense of their own potential savings when they shop.
The Internet of Things could improve quality of life, but it will also consume vast amounts of electricity and boost greenhouse gas emissions. (Shutterstock)

How to make computers faster and climate friendly

The Internet of Things is contributing to climate change. Innovation in computer design could help mitigate the problem.
Transport and livestock are both significant contributors to nitrogen pollution. Annalucia/Shutterstock.com

You’ve heard of a carbon footprint – now it’s time to take steps to cut your nitrogen footprint

The University of Melbourne is the first institution in Australia to have its nitrogen footprint calculated – it's 139 tonnes per year, mainly because of food production, energy use and transport.
Customers line up to buy gasoline in San Jose, California, on March 15, 1974, during an Arab oil embargo. The crisis spurred enactment of the first U.S. vehicle fuel economy standards. AP

Government fuel economy standards for cars and trucks have worked

Since the federal government started setting fuel economy standards, US-built cars have doubled their fuel efficiency, saving money for consumers and reducing pollution.
Off-grid mountain house. Shutterstock

Is it possible to live off-grid?

Lowering your carbon footprint by living off-grid is a sustainability dream. But how possible is it using current technology?
What does a green star rating – One Central Park apartments in Sydney received five stars, for instance – actually mean? AAP

Greenwashing the property market: why ‘green star’ ratings don’t guarantee more sustainable buildings

Buildings are central to creating more sustainable cities, and green ratings are often used to assess how well a building measures up against this goal. But the current system has serious flaws.
Retrofitting older homes to ‘green’ the nation’s housing stock involves much more than installing rooftop solar panels. Tracey Nearmy/AAP

The other 99%: retrofitting is the key to putting more Australians into eco-homes

While new buildings may be the glamorous eco-home pinups, retrofitting existing homes is the main game when it comes to creating energy-efficient, comfortable housing stock for all Australians.
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Americans are saving energy by staying at home

New research shows that computers, streaming video and other digital technologies are helping Americans spend more time at home and less out shopping and commuting, yielding measurable energy savings.

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