These days we hear voices from all sides promoting the virtues of “going green”. But what does that mean for you and I, practically speaking? What can we do to help protect the environment? Here are a few tips to get you started.
1. Replace incandescent bulbs with compact fluorescents.
2. Instead of using your dishwasher every night, especially if you don’t have a full load of dishes to wash, consider washing them by hand and air-drying them. (Just don’t leave the water running the whole time!)
3. If you are eating leftovers, it will save energy to heat up the food in the microwave instead of a conventional oven.
4. Turn off your computer and monitor when you leave for work, or when you retire for the evening.
5. Home electronics take energy to run, even when they are turned off. You can save by plugging your TV and other electronics into power strips that can be completely turned off when equipment is not in use.
6. Lower the thermostat on your hot water heater to about 115 degrees. This will also serve to protect young children from getting burned if they turn on the hot water by themselves.
7. Take a quick shower instead of filling up the bathtub; this will significantly reduce hot water use.
8. Save up laundry to the weekend and run your washer only when you have a full load of clothes.
9. Drive less aggressively – a heavy foot on the gas pedal can lower your gas mileage by 33 percent at highway speeds.
10. Avoid engine idling.
These are simple tips, but with consistent use they will add up, over time, to real savings!