Save Electricity By Building Your Home Office Around Natural Light

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My home office is tucked into the corner of my studio apartment that’s farthest away from my west-facing windows—but as the coronavirus quarantine has progressed, I have found myself less and less interested in sitting down at my tax-deductible desk and more and more interested in completing my work while standing at the kitchen counter.

It’s because of the sunlight, really. And because I can see the herbs I’m growing on my windowsill, the celery butt I’ve “planted” in a glass of water and the trees outside that are just starting to put on leaves.

It was Earth Day recently, which makes it a good time to think about the natural world—and one of the ways we can support our natural world, even while we’re stuck at home, is by spending the majority of our time in natural light. As Megan Barber explains, at Curbed:

Now that many people are working from home full-time due to the pandemic, reconsider your workspace: Do you need to have a light on all day? Is there an alternative spot that might get better natural light? Turning a few lights off helps you reduce electricity usage and extend the life of your lightbulbs.

Spending more of your day with as few lights turned on as possible can also reduce your electric bill, which might be a little more expensive than usual since you’re spending more time at home. I’ve been working from home since 2012, so my bill hasn’t really changed—but I could be more conscious of keeping lights turned off when the sun is out and unplugging appliances when I’m not using them. I could also take Lisa Rowan’s recent Lifehacker advice and vacuum underneath my refrigerator, which I have literally never done (but is supposed to help the refrigerator coils disperse heat more efficiently).

So try working by the light of the sun, at least for now—and if it doesn’t work for you, it’s easy enough to flick the light switch back on tomorrow. If you already know that working by natural light isn’t an option in your living space, Curbed has 16 additional climate-change-prevention tips you might want to consider, all of which are quarantine-friendly.

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