Energy efficiency is defined as using less energy to provide the same level of energy service. Increased energy efficiency is an important component of sustainability because most electricity in the US is generated from burning coal, releasing tremendous amounts of CO2 and pollution into the atmosphere—leading to global warming and reduced air quality.
Increased energy efficiency is the result of both technological advances and changes in human behavior. Examples of technological advances that result in increased energy efficiency include EnergyStar appliances and electronics, programmable HVAC systems and home thermostats, CFL light bulbs, tankless water heaters and LED lighting technology. Examples of changes in human behavior that lead to increased energy efficiency include turning lights off in office buildings, adopting policies for employees to shut down computers at the end of each day and choosing to take mass transit, carpool, or purchase hybrid vehicles.
The City of Indianapolis is committed to improving its energy efficiency and encouraging residents to do the same. Led by the Office of Sustainability, the City is developing policies, programs, and initiatives to promote energy efficiency in industry, business, transportation and homes.