Home electrification: how to electrify your home to fight climate change

By Mara Feb 03, 2022

The warming trend over the last half-century is clear; the last decade contained eight of the ten warmest years. A recent report noted that 2020 was the second warmest year since records began in 1880. Unless action is taken now to reduce emissions linked to human activities, we risk continuing to add around 11 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere each year.

Over recent decades, countries worldwide have expressed growing concern over global warming and have committed to fighting climate change and reaching net zero emissions as fast as possible. But how can we get to zero?

Currently, most of our energy needs worldwide are filled by burning fossil fuels: oil, gas, and coal. In his book, “Electrify”, Australian inventor and US government advisor Saul Griffith claims that the best way to meet our net zero goals is to electrify everything while creating the green infrastructure to generate the needed power. This would be an important step forward for the residential sector, which currently accounts for almost 11% of the world’s total emissions. Electrified households present an unequivocally cheaper and less wasteful future for everyone. But what does home electrification mean?

Your house is at the front line of the climate fight

Burning fossil fuels in our homes for heating and cooking is one of the largest sources of carbon emissions. Electrifying your home is the process of converting all natural-gas-powered technologies to electricity in an attempt to reduce your household’s carbon footprint.

Any device we own that burns fossil fuels can be replaced with a high-performance electric alternative that will produce far fewer emissions. When powered with clean, renewable electricity, these devices will operate emissions-free and create no indoor or outdoor air pollution. Another way of using clean energy is generating your own electricity by installing solar panels on your roof and maximising their potential with a home energy storage system.

The electrification of your home is a significant step you can take towards green living while also reducing your long-term energy costs. Here are a few examples of how to electrify your home.

1) Replace your gas range with an electric hob

While many home cooks love the control with their gas hobs, there are many benefits of going electric.

Apart from increasing your home’s carbon footprint, gas hobs and ovens affect indoor air quality the most of any home appliances, releasing nitrogen oxides and carbon monoxide that can harm your family’s health. Regardless of which electric hob you pick, you will be free of these dangerous fumes in your home.

2) Installing solar panels to produce your own clean energy

An important thing to consider when electrifying your home and reducing its carbon footprint is solar energy. Solar PV panels, known as photovoltaics (PV), take in the sun’s energy and convert it into electricity for your home, helping you lower your electricity bills while also making your household more sustainable.

Moreover, by adding a smart battery to your solar panels, you can further maximise the benefits of your self generated solar energy.

3) Adding energy storage to maximise the benefits of solar and protect yourself from the energy crisis

To make the best use of your solar energy, every solar panel owner should also install a smart solar battery. By adding a smart battery, the excess energy your home is not currently using goes into charging your battery, so instead of sending the electricity back to the grid, you can store it for when you need it.

Instead of switching back to traditional energy suppliers for all of your energy needs, when the sun goes down, you can use the energy built up during the day within the solar battery.

Lowering your electricity bills is particularly important with the current energy crisis. With electricity prices rapidly rising in the last few months, installing solar panels and battery storage is an excellent solution for being less reliable on the grid and the volatility of energy prices. More details on the benefits of home energy storage can be found in our blog.

4) Be part of the community that supports a greener grid

One problem grid operators face when the grid begins to absorb more renewable energy is that there are times — especially when it’s very sunny or windy — when renewables generate more power than the grid can use, and other times when they generate only a fraction of what the grid needs. When the grid is under pressure, it’s essential for there to be flexibility.

Smart technologies like AI can mitigate against the unpredictable nature of renewable energy and group distributed energy resources, like smart batteries, into virtual power plants (VPPs) to deliver flexibility services and keep the grid in balance. Essentially, these VPPs can provide a more sustainable option to take the pressure off the grid by discharging the solar energy already stored in batteries to power households or charging up from the grid when the grid has too much power. Therefore, not only will you reduce your household’s emissions, but you will also join the community that is making the transition to renewable energy on the grid a reality.