Energy Use

In San Mateo County, our energy is produced from a variety of fuels, including natural gas, coal, oil, nuclear, hydro, and non-hydro renewables. Fossil fuels - coal, oil, and natural gas - currently provide more than 85 percent of all energy consumed in the United States, nearly two-thirds of our electricity, and virtually all of our transportation fuels. In 2003, about ten percent of our electricity was provided by renewable energy sources - wind, solar, and small-scale hydroelectric.

The charts below show PG&E's overall electricity supply mix for 2009, which included both the energy PG&E generated and the energy PG&E purchased from third parties.

* "Unspecified Sources" refers to electricity generated that is not traceable to specific generation sources by any auditable contract trail and "Other Fossil" includes diesel oil and petroleum coke (a waste byproduct of oil refining).
** As defined in Senate Bill 1078, which created California's Renewable Portfolio Standard, an eligible renewable resource includes geothermal facilities, hydroelectric facilities with a capacity rating of 30 MW or less, biomass facilities, selected municipal solid waste facilities, solar facilities and wind facilities.

Primary energy consumption in the United States is projected to increase at an average rate of 1.1 percent per year. Energy use in San Mateo County continues to increase along with the nation. Over the last 10 years energy use in the County increased by 9 percent. The nation's increasing reliance on fossil fuels to provide fuel is not sustainable. One way to reduce our fossil fuel reliance is to incorporate energy efficiency into our homes.

Reduce Energy

Energy efficiency comes with many benefits. You can make your home more comfortable while saving money and protecting the environment. There are many simple steps that you can take to improve the energy efficiency of your home:
  • replace light bulbs with energy efficient compact fluorescent bulbs
  • only run the dishwasher when its full
  • turn off the lights when you leave a room
Longer-term measures include replacing furnaces and appliances, and retrofitting your home with new windows and insulation.

Whatever steps you choose to take, you'll be doing your part to use less energy! You'll also save money by lowering your utility bills, help reduce pollution created by fossil fuels, and reduce our dependence on non-renewable resources. In the end, energy efficiency just makes sense.

Use these handy tips to start making your home energy efficient today. To learn more about incentives and rebates, or to find additional information, check out our resources.