In the past two years, an approximately 40% increase in gasoline and heating fuel prices has led to a continuous rise in energy costs. According to the Energizing Household Energy Efficiency report, last year Canadian households spent a combined total of $60 billion on energy costs. This figure is estimated to increase by $6 billion this year. That means each household will be spending approximately $5000 on heating and electricity, an increase of around $500 per household in only one year.
With this information, consumers need to act. In order to reap long term benefits, consumers need to begin improving the energy efficiency of their homes now. Fortunately, in the 2011 federal budget, the government has committed to putting an additional $400 million over the 2011-12 fiscal year, into the ecoENERGY Retrofit-Homes program, a program that was briefly discontinued over the last few months. This program provides grants to eligible households to offset the cost of energy-efficient upgrades.
Energy prices are rising, but if you as a consumer act now and take as many necessary steps as possible to increase the energy efficiency of your home (ex. updating your home’s existing insulation ), short term costs will easily be compensated for by the long term rewards, a lifetime of lower energy bills.