Electric homes could help slow cliamte change

The electrification of local highways has been promoted for years. But what about the electrification of neighborhoods? It could go a long way in reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

PORTLAND, Ore. – From the outside, Joe Wachunas’ house looks like a typical Portland house. But if you take a closer look, you’ll see how his home helps keep a lot of carbon dioxide out of the air.

“The fully electric house is the comfortable home of the future.” he said. “We have electrified our house over a period of 10 years, we cut our gas line and we no longer have to pay this guest service fee.”

Scientists around the world agree that we must reduce emissions from thermal inclusions to zero by 2050 to avoid the worst effects of climate change. By replacing everything in your home that burns fossil fuels with an electrical alternative, you can keep around 4 to 8 tons of CO2 out of the air every year.

“Our family emits around 3 tons of CO2 per person per year, and that only through the electrification of our own systems,” said Wachunas.

Instead, to electrify a house, you need to replace the gas stove and water heater with electric heat pumps. Next, opt for an induction cooker instead of a gas cooker.

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“You don’t get fumes and carbon monoxide going through your house when you burn things, and it’s just really great technology.”

And for those who love the warmth and comfort of a gas or wood fireplace but want to avoid pollution, opt for an LED fireplace that can give off heat if you so choose.

“It consumes like a tiny fraction of the energy,” said Wachunas.

What is the price of doing all of this? It’s about as much as buying gas appliances. And with the help of a solar system on the roof, Wachunas saves a lot.

“We’re probably saving between $ 1,000 and $ 2,000 a year in energy bills by going all-electric,” he said.

This is just one of the many ideas explored during Portland’s fourth annual Sustainable Building Week happening next week.

It’s an opportunity to learn about the latest trends in green building and clean energy.

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