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In Depth

Kyoto and beyond

Climate change: Did you know?

Last Updated Nov. 25, 2005

Transportation

  • Using public transit for one year instead of your car will save nearly a tonne of pollutants from being released into the atmosphere.
  • One full bus takes 40 vehicles off the road. Over the course of a year, that full bus will prevent nine tonnes of pollutants from getting into the atmosphere.
  • An idling engine releases twice as much exhaust fumes as a moving vehicle.
  • If every driver in Canada avoided idling for five minutes a day, we could prevent 1.6 million tonnes of carbon dioxide from being emitted.
  • Ten seconds of idling uses more fuel than restarting the engine.
  • Easing up on the gas pedal can save lots of fuel. Decreasing your highway cruising speed from 120 km/h to 90 km/h will cut fuel consumption by about 20 per cent.

At home

  • Turn off your monitor when you�re not using your computer. More than 50 per cent of the energy used by a desktop computer powers the monitor.
  • Switch to compact fluorescent light bulbs. They use 75 per cent less energy and last 10 times longer than incandescent bulbs, while providing the same amount of light.
  • If every Canadian household replaced one standard 60-watt incandescent light bulb with a 20-watt compact fluorescent light bulb, greenhouse gas emissions would be cut by 400,000 tonnes. That�s like removing 66,000 cars from the road. It would save $73 million a year in energy costs.
  • The typical house uses about 30 light bulbs, using a total of about $200 worth of electricity each year.
  • Refrigerators account for about 11-13 per cent of your total energy costs each month.
  • A refrigerator built 20 years ago uses 70 per cent more energy than today's energy efficient models.
  • Chest freezers use 10-25 per cent less energy than upright models because they are better insulated and cold air does not spill out when the door is opened.
  • New freezers use less than half the electricity of those made in the early 1990s.
  • New dishwashers use about 95 per cent less energy than those built in the early 1970s.
  • The average household does 215 loads in the dishwasher per year.
  • Rinsing dishes in the sink before washing them in the dishwasher wastes water and energy.
  • Keeping lids on pots when you are cooking will use up to 20 per cent less energy and your food will also cook more quickly and evenly.
  • Burning wood in a conventional wood stove for nine hours emits as much particulate matter into the atmosphere as a certified stove does in 60 hours or as a car travelling 18,000 km.
  • Residential wood heating is responsible for 29 per cent of the fine particle emissions associated with human activities. This makes it the third most important source overall.
  • 23 per cent of Canada's greenhouse gas emissions are produced by individuals and families, according to Natural Resources Canada.

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