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Daylight (and energy) saving time

Daylight (and energy) saving time

Earlier this month we all “sprang forward” with the beginning of Daylight Saving Time. However, have you ever wondered what impact Daylight Saving Time had on electricity usage? While there continues to be debate on both sides about the real energy savings, an article on the United States Department of Energy’s website (energy.gov), detailed a study from a few years back that found the annual move ahead can save as much as 1.3 billion kilowatt-hours of electricity annually. Meanwhile, other studies have found that the demand for residential lighting goes down, but the demand for heating and cooling goes up.

In either case, what we do know for sure is that there are steps you can take during this time of year to curb energy usage in your home. Here are a few to consider:

  1. Open your curtains and allow the sunlight to help heat your homes. That “extra” hour of evening sun can help take the chill away during the cold March evenings.  
  2. As you adjust your clocks, reverse your ceiling fans as well. During the winter months, they rotate one way and help to push the warm air down. However, springing ahead is a good time to change that rotation, so that they will draw the warm air upward during the coming summer months.
  3. Also, remember to adjust your thermostat to fit your daylight saving time schedule. If you plan to be outdoors longer in the evenings, you can save energy by not heating or cooling your home as much during those times.

While we cannot do anything to help you recover the hour of sleep you lost while springing forward, these tips can help you conserve a bit more energy during this time of year.

GRDA is Oklahoma’s state-owned electric utility; fully funded by revenues from electric and water sales instead of taxes. Each day, GRDA strives to be an “Oklahoma agency of excellence” by focusing on the 5 E’s: electricity, economic development, environmental stewardship, employees and efficiency. 

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