When it comes to doing your part for the environment, more and more people are becoming aware of the going “green” trend. From recycling to using environmentally safe cleaning products, there are minor adjustments which a person can make at home to help protect our planet. The best way to protect the Earth is to cut back on what you consume and recycle products whenever possible, and in the following article, we will discuss…
The Top Ten Tips for Going Green at Home
- Gardening: Use natural compost instead of synthetic fertilizers. Compost provides natural soil organisms and the perfect balance of nutrients your garden needs and healthy soil helps minimize the number of weeds you have. It is easy to grow healthy plants and starting with natural, nutrient rich compost is the first step.
- Healthier paint: Traditional paint contains harsh solvents, toxic metals and volatile organic compounds which can cause air pollution. Instead check into the low odor low voc paint which is manufactured by most companies today and do your part to reduce levels of harmful toxins in your home.
- Green up appliances: Get rid of old, broken down appliances and replace them with energy efficient models which can help you save up to 20% on your annual electric bill. If just 1 in 10 homes were to use energy efficient appliances, it would help save 1.7 million trees each year.
- Watch your temperature: Half of our home’s energy consumption comes from heating and cooling. Turning down the thermostat in cold temperature and keeping it a bit higher in the heat of summer can help save 3-5% on yearly electrical expenses. Installing a programmable thermostat, changing furnace filters and using ceiling fans all help to make you more comfortable and keep the air in the home moving, which directly saves money on power bills.
- Conserve water: Put an aerator on all the faucets in the household and you may cut your water use by 50%. Install a low flow toilet, turn off running water while brushing teeth and limiting time for showers all directly impacts the costs you spend on your water bill and this is just one simple suggestion which saves countless gallons of potentially wasted water.
- Use green cleaners: Use natural cleaning products and do not purchase ones which have potentially toxic chemicals which could harm your home, pets or family. Use products that have coconut or plant oil based formulations and use lemon juice, borax, baking soda, plain water and vinegar and save not only the environment, but also money at the same time.
- Use energy efficient lighting: Newer light bulbs use 66% less energy than the traditional bulbs we are all familiar with. Changing and replacing bulbs with new energy efficient bulbs, saves you money over the lifetime of the bulb.
- Use less paper: Purchase only “tree-free” 100% post-consumer recycled paper products and you not only save money, but trees as well. Paper with post consumer recycled products uses less virgin pulp and keeps more waste out of the landfills.
- Bamboo hardwood floors: If you want to invest in a new floor in your home, use bamboo flooring which is considered environmentally friendly. It takes 6-8 years for bamboo to mature versus 50-100 for typical hardwood trees, also be sure to use formaldehyde free glue when installing the flooring to avoid toxic fumes being released into the air.
- Reduce plastics: Each year, people in the US throw away more than 120 millions plastic bags from grocery stores, trash bags, diapers, soda bottles and sandwich baggies and other plastic products. By recycling products and plastics, we reduce the greenhouse gas emissions and directly impact our environment by not contributing to more consumer waste.
The more things you do naturally and the more you recycle, the better it is for the environment. Being “green” is not only environmentally friendly, but it also saves you money and protects the planet. By incorporating a few or all of the following simple tips into your daily life, you can reduce your carbon footprint and preserve the planet for future generations.