Energy conservation through trees

In Minnesota, strategically placed shade trees can reduce an air conditioning bills by nearly 25 percent and a windbreak can reduce annual fuel bills by up to 20 percent. Also, trees throughout the community (our community forest) cool us in summer (thereby reducing air pollution) and they shelter us from harsh winter winds. In order to achieve these savings and benefits, trees should be properly located.

Strategies: West is best. Let the sun shine in. The more the merrier. Up and over.

Home surrounded by a grove of trees.

Home energy use facts

Minnesotans typically spend ten times more to heat than to cool their homes.

In summer

  • Most unwanted heat comes through east and west facing windows.
  • Less than 5 percent of the heat comes through insulated roofs and walls.
  • Shading west windows reduces costly peak electric use.

In winter

  • Northwesterly winds cause most heat loss.
  • Significant solar energy enters through south windows.