Q: What is the difference between energy conservation and energy efficiency?
A: This is a common question because many people believe that these words can be used interchangeably. The truth is that there is a difference; however, they are both good ideas to adopt!
Basically speaking, energy conservation refers to using less energy or none at all, while energy efficiency means using energy wisely and limiting waste.
You are conserving energy when you decrease your consumption by doing things like turning off lights when you’re no longer in the room or unplugging appliances when they aren’t in use.
You are being energy efficient when you reduce the amount of energy required to perform your tasks, like if you use compact fluorescent light bulbs instead of regular light bulbs. CFLs light up a room the same way that standard incandescent light bulbs do, but they use a quarter of the energy and will last 8-12 times longer.
While we should all be thinking about conserving energy and limiting our usage, technology is continuing to advance, giving us energy efficient solutions without huge sacrifice. Instead of feeling like we need to be uncomfortable in order to use less energy by reading with fewer lamps on or shivering in a cold house, we can take advantage of new technology and make the most of the energy that we do use.