The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) was established in 1977 and its function and purpose have changed over the decades.

The roles of companies, consumers, and communities have evolved as well, as we learn more about energy conservation, the impact it has on our future, and how we can make a difference.

Energy efficiency is not just important for next month’s energy bill, it’s essential for the decades to come.

Whether you have kids, nieces and nephews, or young mentees, there are many ways you can teach the next generation to follow in our footsteps and continue to foster a clean and green world.

Make Energy Efficiency a Topic of Conversation

We can’t expect the next generation to care about energy efficiency if they never hear it from people they respect or admire, which is why many celebrities have chosen to use their platforms for good, hoping to influence those around them to make better and greener choices.

You don’t need to be a celebrity with an Instagram following to talk with your kids or someone you mentor about the benefits of energy efficiency. Discussing how our everyday actions can make a difference and reflecting on what is happening in the world are effective ways of teaching the next generation. It’s all about exposure, and a simple conversation is a great place to start.

Practice the Energy Saving Tips You Teach

It’s one thing to talk about the importance of conserving energy and it’s another thing to show a child or young adult how you’re working to make a difference with your everyday actions. You are a role model to your kids, grandchildren, and mentees, regarding a variety of subjects such as healthy eating habits or treating others with respect, so why not also model taking care of the environment? Your words will have a bigger impact when your actions match in magnitude.

Involve Them in Energy Saving Activities

If your children are already doing chores, this is an easy transition. Put them in charge of closing the curtains on specific windows when the sun comes up during the summer or ask them to help with the recycling. The possibilities are endless! If you have a young intern working for your company, invite them to energy efficiency meetings or involve them in green decisions. Don’t save your green activities for after bedtime or after hours; make the whole team a part of making the world a better place.

Make the Connection Between Saving Energy and the Planet

Often the “why” is lost in energy efficiency conversations, yet it is so important to the implementation and sustainability of energy efficiency habits. The facts of how our everyday actions impact the health of our planet, the world’s biodiversity, and the future of water access and distribution is critical to understanding why we make the extra effort to live a greener lifestyle. Share your “why” with people you care about and encourage them to explore and find their own “why.”

Take Them Shopping

Depending on the age of your nieces and nephews or the person you mentor, shopping can be an impactful lesson when it comes to green decision making. Teach them to look for brands that are eco-friendly and companies that support green efforts. Take them to the store to purchase LED light bulbs and show them how you decide which products you pick. You can open their eyes to the choices they have and show them how you go about making the best decisions for you, your family, and the planet. Remember, the decisions that you automatically make are choices that the next generation are still learning, and that’s where you come in!

Make it Fun and Appealing

Who doesn’t like to have fun? We’re talking bingo, books, games, and prizes! Energy efficiency doesn’t have to be boring. Incorporate it into a family game night, find a fun children’s book to read at bedtime, or make a competition out of it at your household or your company. There are often misconceptions out there among adults that energy efficiency is expensive, difficult, or inaccessible. Now is the time to show the next generation that there are so many ways we can do our part, easily, right from our homes.

Leverage the Resources You Have

You’re not in this alone. There are many organizations that understand the importance of energy efficiency and provide resources to those who want to learn more or teach others. Find videos from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) that are dedicated to kids or visit the U.S. DOE website for more information.

If you’re looking to improve the energy efficiency of your home, call us at HomeWorks Energy at (781) 305-3319 and we’ll show you how to make greener choices. We offer no-cost Home Energy Assessments, virtually or in-person, and you get access to many rebates and incentives from the sponsors of the Mass Save® program.

Because you pay a monthly energy efficiency charge on your utility bill, participation in the program is of no additional cost to you! You could be eligible for 100% off air sealing, 75-100% off insulation, no-cost items like programmable thermostats, 0% financing, and up to $2,750 in HVAC equipment upgrades. Click here to schedule a no-cost assessment. We’ve served more than 125,000 MA neighbors so far and we’re on a mission to make our state and our world cleaner and greener.