Saving the environment
- Switch off anything that uses electricity. Stick to a routine of shutting off as many electrical appliances as possible when you leave a room. If it will be at least 36 hours before you use it again, unplug it. Even when an appliance is off, it can still suck up juice. Just imagine. You will save hundreds of dollars and you could donate the money to a charity in need or buy yourself something nice.
- Use renewable energy sources. In the USA around 71% of electricity is produced by utilities that burn coal, gas, or other fuels to produce the electricity. Burning coal or other fuels puts green-house gases and pollution in the environment. An average home powered by a coal utility will burn 12,000 pounds of coal a year. An average home’s electrical usage causes about the same amount of pollution as 2 cars. By upgrading a home to use renewable energy (such as solar power or wind power) the reduction of pollution for an average home is equivalent to planting 400 trees.
- Turn off the water when you're not using it. As Ellen DeGeneres says, "Turn off the water while brushing your teeth." Why is the water running for so long?
- Use rechargeable batteries instead of disposable batteries. Batteries not only take up landfill space (they can't be incinerated), they can leak acid into the Earth. Even then, only use the appliance when you must. If you have the choice, plug in the device instead of using batteries.
- Install low-flow toilets in your home, or put a brick in the reservoir (the back) of your current toilet. The space the brick takes up in the bottom of the tank will permit you to use less water, but keep the toilet functioning. Also try adjusting the water level down. Many toilets have an adjustment to lower the valve float.
- Organize a Carpool for work or school. This way, if you take a highway with a High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lane, this can usually save time and money on gasoline. For bonus points, use a hybrid or other car that gets high gas mileage
- Invest in a good bicycle and helmet. Use them when your destination is within 5–10 miles of home. You can also buy pannier racks, a bike trailer, or a sturdy basket to hold items. Get in the habit of riding your bike to local areas. Plus, you will get more exercise and feel better!
- Get a hybrid. If you have been looking for a new vehicle, hybrids are becoming more and more popular. There are a wide variety of hybrids on the market from little sedans to big SUVs. They not only give off less emissions into the air, they can save you money with less trips to the gas station.
- Switch to compact florescent light bulbs. While these cost more, they are also longer lasting than conventional light bulbs, and they use only one-quarter of the energy. They may cost more money, but last much longer.
- Compost. Designate an area in your yard to put your yard waste, fruit peels, and uneaten food. Find some worms who can break the waste down and produce a very rich soil that works great with your landscaping. Keep your compost heap as far from a water source as possible, and if you can, put a couple layers of concrete blocks or bricks around your heap to avoid a mess on your lawn.
- Recycle old plastic bags. There are a lot of things which you can do with old plastic bags. Don't throw them away! They will come in handy! You can reuse them when shopping. Check out how to recycle old plastic bags.
- Start a neighborhood clean-up that will clean up the neighborhood, every week or so. Get the whole neighborhood involved! Try and get the community involved with the projects, and even do a public park clean up - this is everyone's home.
- Limit your shower water. Use less water when showering and don't take longer than fifteen minutes. There are also devices there days that can limit the amount of heated water used per shower.
- Turn it off Buy a power strip, and plug your TV, computer, lights, etc. into it. At night, when you're not using them, turn off the power strip, because even an appliance that is off sucks up energy if there's nothing stopping it. Not only does it save electricity, it shaves money off your electric bill.
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