Go Green with these Earth Day Tips
Because of the amount of time we spend in our homes, creating an environmentally-sensitive house is a way to practice the green-living lifestyle while making a serious impact. The following tips can help you make your home more eco-friendly so you can start living green today.
Pursue Energy Star Options
Replacing outdated appliances or electronics with Energy Star models is a cost-saving, green-living upgrade that doesn't require any change in lifestyle. The bigger the appliance, the larger the savings, but even replacing the home's outdated incandescent light bulbs with Energy Star LED bulbs can save $30-80 over the lifetime of each light.
Create Less Waste
Many waste-creating habits actually have greener alternatives such as purchasing a reusable water bottle, using inexpensive tote bags for shopping, paying bills online and looking for paperless options to cut back on the amount of wastepaper you create, as well.
Source Your Food Locally
The shorter the distance that food travels from the farm to your dinner table, the less energy the journey consumes. Keep an eye out for farmer’s markets and local sections in your supermarket to source local meat, dairy, and produce. If the food is organic and grown without releasing damaging chemicals into the environment, all the better.
Don't Let There Be Light
Turning off the lights in an empty room is a good habit to follow for those interested in an eco-friendly lifestyle. In addition, those interested in conserving energy should reserve artificial light for tasks that require it. Opening the curtains to welcome sunlight during the day can often provide all the light that is necessary.
Use Green Cleaning Products
Some of the cleaning products you purchase at the supermarket can have negative effects on the environment, not to mention your own health. You can create healthy, green cleaners using common household items like baking soda and vinegar that will get your home clean and shiny without the harmful side effects.
Embrace Cooler Water
Adjusting the home's water heater to between 120 and 130 degrees Fahrenheit (48 and 54 degrees Celsius) reduces the energy and financial expense required to run the appliance. It’s also more eco-friendly to opt for cold water rather than hot when washing clothing.
Cultivate a Green Yard
When planning your home garden look for plants that don’t require much water, plant trees for shade and wind breaks, and avoid harsh herbicides and pesticides to help cultivate a yard that is more in tune with the surrounding nature.
Eliminate Useless Energy Waste
Your home can waste energy even when household items are not in use. Fix leaky faucets, unplug electronics and chargers, and shut off computers when not in use.
Find Alternatives to Throwing Away
Before throwing the object away, determine if it can be recycled, donated or even sold to someone else. Lastly, consider whether the item may be repurposed in some way – such as turning a jar into a flowerpot or a tire into a swing.
Choose Cloth Over Paper
Whether repurposing old t-shirts as cleaning rags or investing in towels, cloth presents a more eco-friendly alternative to paper. A cloth rag can last for years, whereas used paper gets thrown out immediately. Use cloth towels for cleaning projects, cloth napkins for meals and cloth diapers for children.
Look for Sources of Green Energy
Electricity produced by wind and solar energy is dramatically more friendly to the environment than using fossil fuels, and renewable generating facilities are expanding rapidly all over the country. That means more opportunities for you to use green energy in your home.
Enlist Your Friends and Family
Every person you bring onboard to a green lifestyle multiplies the impact that you can make on your own. Teach your kids about conservation around the house and encourage other friends and family members to think green, and you’ll by surrounded by an eco-friendly community in no time.
These tips can help anyone embrace green living at home, and while the more tactics you pursue, the larger the environmental benefit, any one of these practices can serve as a starting point toward a green-living lifestyle.
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