We often refer to appliance efficiency standards as one of the best environmental policies you’ve never heard of -- and it’s true. Appliance efficiency standards can make a meaningful impact on our planet and our health by reducing energy and water waste and lowering harmful emissions. Unfortunately, this high-impact clean energy solution often gets lost in the mix of such more well-known and visible clean energy resources like solar and wind.
But that doesn’t have to be the case. Right now, the District of Columbia is on its way to updating its appliance efficiency standards -- a move that could bring attention to energy efficiency’s many benefits.
In December, D.C.’s Energy Efficiency Standards Amendment Act, sponsored by Councilmember Mary Cheh, passed through the D.C. Council with a unanimous vote from all 13 council members. It then landed on Mayor Muriel Bowser’s desk where she showed her support by signing it.
Now, the act will go to the United States Congress where our federal legislators have 30 days to review it before it takes effect. The bill has received widespread support from D.C. decision makers, which is a positive sign for its enactment. But we can’t take anything for granted. Washingtonians need to let every representative know that we support updating appliance efficiency standards in the District and ask them to stand with us in embracing this commonsense solution to energy waste.
So how do we get people excited about voicing support for appliance efficiency standards in D.C.?
Well, you do it by getting creative. That’s what my digital organizing colleague, Graham Marema, a team of volunteers and I are setting out to do.
One of the tools that we have crafted to generate buzz around the benefits of appliance standards is a flip book. This eye-catching, colorful and easy-to-read flip book breaks down the benefits of stronger D.C. appliance efficiency regulations into bite-size and easily-digestible chunks. Each page in the flip book can stand on its own or can be read as a part of the larger story.
How you can put the appliance standards flip book to work:
Share the flip book on social media.
You can share this flip book -- which comes in both horizontal and square formats -- on social media. This will allow you to spread the word about appliance standards to your friends, family and other members of the public. You can share the horizontal graphics on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn as an album or even use them to change your cover photo. The square graphics can be employed as an Instagram post or make them pop even more with some text and GIFs on your Instagram story.
Don’t forget to tag your elected officials and Environment America. You can find us on Twitter at @EnvAm, on Facebook at @EnvironmentAmerica, and on Instagram at @EnvAm.
Send the graphics to friends and family.
In addition to sharing the benefits of appliance standards with your social media followers, you can send the book directly to friends and family. If they haven’t heard about appliance standards or don’t know about the D.C. bill, the flip book will show them why this policy is so important.
Once they’ve taken in all the benefits of appliance standards, ask them to call their legislator’s office to voice their support for the bill.
Share the flip book with Mayor Bowser directly.
You can make double the impact when you send the flip book images to your legislators. Not only will you voice your support for appliance standards, but you will also do so in a unique and memorable way.
Our elected officials are constantly bombarded with information about various bills. By sharing the images from this fun, compelling and educational flip book, you’ll stand out from the crowd that sends policy memos or fact sheets.
Print the graphics out and make them into a series of signs.
The D.C. flip book doesn’t have to be confined to the digital world. You can print out the graphics and use them as signs, flyers or posters. Put them outside your door; pin them on the wall behind you during a Zoom meeting (better yet, make one your Zoom background); or tack them to the bulletin board at your town hall or a local coffee shop. The possibilities are endless!
When we work together on appliance standards, we can take the best environmental policy you’ve never heard of and transform it into one that everyone is excited about.