Questions for ‘Couch potatoes tend to be TV-energy hogs’

Through the developing world, televisions (like those for sale here) have become a fixture of home entertainment. 

Matt McGee /Flickr (CC BY-ND 2.0)

To accompany feature “’Couch potatoes’ tend to be TV-energy hogs”


Before Reading: 

1. List the top five appliances or other devices in your home that you think use the most electricity.

2. What powers the electricity used to run those machines?

During Reading:

1. In this story, what is a rebate?    

2. How many people were surveyed for the American Time Use Survey?    

3. What is a computer model?

4. What share of U.S. viewers only watch a little more than an hour of TV each day?

5. Name three features that characterized many, if not most, people in the heavy-viewing group.

6. How much U.S. electricity comes from fossil fuels?

7. What time of day is the peak in terms of electricity use, based on the story?

8. Name two ideas for ways that an electric company might prompt people to use (or buy new) energy-efficient appliances.

9. What is the easiest (and least expensive) way to cut the energy use associated with televisions?

After Reading:

1. What are two things you (or your family) could do to cut your use of electricity? What would it take to convince you to make that change?

2. Work with two other people and pretend you are a electricity-producing power company. Put together a campaign to get people to reduce their electricity use for a major product type (other than TVs). What group of people would you address your campaign to (whose behaviors do you want to change)? How would you get their attention? What information would you supply these people to make a compelling case for why they should make those changes?