Ranger Rick is now available for all ages!

Energy Pathway - Fast Facts

eight pathways energy
  • Only 10 percent of the energy used by an incandescent light bulb produces light; the rest is given off as heat.

  • Compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs) use only a quarter of the energy of incandescent bulbs and last 8-12 times longer.

  • In the United States, about 49 percent of our energy comes from coal, 20 percent from natural gas, and 19 percent from nuclear.

  • Fossil fuels account for 86 percent of annual energy use in the U.S.

  • The amount of energy released by burning a wood match is 1 BTU. The total energy used in the U.S. each year is 99.89 quadrillion BTU.

  • Thirty percent of the energy used in buildings is used inefficiently or unnecessarily.

  • Schools spend more money on energy than on computers and textbooks combined.

  • If every U.S. household replaced four incandescent bulbs with compact fluorescent bulbs, we'd save as much energy as removing seven million cars from the road.

  • In the next two decades, U.S. energy consumption will increase by almost 40 percent - an amount equal to today's energy use in California, Texas, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Illinois combined, according to estimates from the Energy Information Administration.

  • Many idle electronics - TVs, VCRs, DVD and CD players, cordless phones, microwaves - use energy even when switched off to keep display clocks lit and memory chips and remote controls working. Nationally, these energy "vampires" use 5 percent of our domestic energy and cost consumers more than $3 billion annually.

  • Over an air conditioner's lifetime, only one-fourth of the total cost is for the purchase of the air conditioning unit. The greater cost - three-fourths - is for the energy to run the unit.

  • "Sleep" features that power down electronic devices when they are not in use can save households up to $70 annually.

Eco-Schools USA Partner 

Green Ribbon Schools

For examples of other activities, check out these suggested actions from the Texas Green Ribbon Schools that align with our pathways.  Activities under the Texas Green Ribbon program can be used for meeting many of the Eco-Schools USA seven step requirements!