The federal program also recommended keeping thermostats at 82 degrees during the night

By Helen Murphy
August 21, 2019 03:51 PM
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A new set of suggestions about how you should set your thermostat is causing a heated debate online.

Energy Star, a program run by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Energy that promotes energy efficiency, recently recommended that thermostats be kept at 78 degrees on average during the summer.

During periods of time when no one is in the house, Energy Star recommended bringing the temperature up to 85, and the program suggested keeping it at 82 degrees while you’re asleep at night.

Energy Star said that setting thermostats to these energy-efficient settings could save users a “significant” amount of money.

“The pre-programmed settings that come with programmable thermostats are intended to deliver savings without sacrificing comfort,” the program says of the settings, which went viral after a journalist shared their report on Twitter, asking, “How cool do you keep your house?”

Social media users didn’t hold back their outrage at what many felt were excessively warm temperatures.

“You know how hot 78 degrees is?” one Twitter user questioned. “In what world is 82° an appropriate temperature to sleep in? Lord have mercy,” a second said.

“If you’re going put your thermostat at 78 degrees and above, why do you even have a/c?” another user asked. “72 degrees and below for sleep and I’ll never compromise.”

“If your AC thermostat isn’t set to 75 or lower, please don’t invite me to your house,” another commenter wrote jokingly.

Other social media users expressed their frustration in meme form, sharing a GIF of Elmo surrounded by flames and cartoonist KC Green‘s comic strip featuring a dog sitting in a house on fire.

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The recommendations came amid a scorching summer. July was the hottest month ever recorded globally, according to NBC News. Last month, the outlet reports, global temperatures averaged 62.13 degrees — 1.71 degrees above the 20th century average.

Earlier this summer, heat waves shattered records in Europe and affected millions of people in the United States.

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