Energy Use Competitions

Why is it important?

Competition for energy savings is a way to reduce energy usage while having fun with neighbors. This is important because it creates a sense of community and friendly competition. It also further incentives people to learn more about energy savings through the other initiatives in order to give themselves an edge during the competitions.  The competition will build momentum for other initiatives.  It will do this by encouraging people to learn about energy saving techniques and technologies to improve their chances of winning the competition.

How to do it?

The competition is basically a posting and tallying of energy use per home over the course of the competition. The amount of time the competition will run would be determined by the neighborhood association who would be running the competition. An easy way to do the contests is for people to present their energy bills.

Determining a winner can be done in different way depending on what the energy saving goal the association wants to encourage. The contest can be based on energy reduction or based on the percentage lost so that someone who starts off wasteful doesn’t have an advantage by stopping obvious wasteful activities over someone who already is fairly efficient and does not have a lot of energy to waste.

The competitions would be greatly helped if the association could find prizes for the winners. This could be done by asking local businesses to contribute prizes such as products or discounts. The association could look for other funding sources to buy energy saving materials and technology for the winners. The prizes can also just be the recognition of being a good neighbor and helping the environment.

Case Studies

http://www.nypa.gov/YonkersEnergyPlan.html

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