Making a difference: Energy production

We recently had solar panels installed on our home. Watching the meter run backwards while we wait for the new smart meter to be installed has made me think about sustainable energy production. It is so important not just for the environment but for us personally as individuals.

I’m talking about two different types of energy here…

  1. External energy that we consume when putting on the lights, heating our house or using appliances.
  2. Internal energy we need to function each days as individuals.

Sustainable Energy Production for the Environment

When consuming external energy to meet our day to day needs we should consider it’s source. Most electrical energy here in Australia is still produced by burning coal. This isn’t a sustainable source of energy!

Alternatives include hydro, wind and solar power. There are other options but these are the three most common.

We’ve personally chosen solar panels as the sustainable source of energy for our household. This is because solar panels can be installed on individual houses allowing us to not be reliant on the government or energy companies to choose sustainable options.

The system we’ve installed should provide enough energy to cover our own household usage. There is the potential there on sunny days and months that we’ll produce more than we need. This means we’ll be able to export it to the grid, helping others to access more sustainable sources of energy as well.

Sustainable Energy Production for the Individual

In order to do anything, we need energy.

Living with a chronic illness that causes pain and fatigue means that my personal energy levels are limited. I’ve been thinking about the activities I can do that help me produce energy sustainably.

What do I mean by sustainably? I mean an activity I can repeat and that will help me feel more energised at least 90% of the time.

This list may be different for everyone but here are my top sustainable energy producing activities.

  • SLEEP. Sleep is top of my list. If I can get enough sleep each night I can slowly build up my energy supplies. I would never claim that a good night sleep means I wake up full of energy and revitalised. It’s more that if I don’t get a good night sleep I’ll be worse.
  • YOGA. Yoga reduces my pain levels and helps me feel calmer. This allows me to feel capable of doing more than when I don’t manage to get to my classes.
  • DIET. Eating healthy food with a good amount of fats, proteins, carbs, etc helps fuel my body and give me energy. Eating too much unhealthy food does the opposite.
  • MEDITATION.  When I manage to meditate, it has a similar effect for me as the Yoga.

Like the solar panels are likely to have a net positive impact on our environmental footprint, undertaking these activities consistently should have a net positive impact on my own health.

And over to you…

How do you produce sustainable energy for yourself?

Have you ever considered sustainable energy sources for yourself or your house?

Any other thoughts?

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