The challenge of the 21st Century is to reduce carbon emissions while sustaining economic growth. This article provides some useful tips to help reduce your carbon footprint. Read more for details on how you can help save the planet while saving money.
Reduce The Use Of Toilet Paper
The use of toilet paper itself is not the biggest factor but the amount of energy used to make the product. One of the easiest ways for an average person to reduce the impact of toilet paper on the environment is to use water instead of toilet paper. By simply adding small amounts of water to your bowel movements you reduce the need for toilet paper and also avoid wasting water during flushing. This simple step will save the amount of water equal to the average annual use of the household. Around the world, the number of trees being cut down to produce the necessary supplies of toilet paper is having a tremendous impact on the environment as well as the local ecology, and by reducing the number of the people using the product the impact can be lessened considerably.
Use Public Transportation
If your job is near public transportation, make full use of the bus and train routes available to you. Not only will you reduce emissions associated with driving yourself or carpooling, but avoiding traffic jams and the stress that comes with them will keep your blood pressure down as well. In addition, you will save money on fuel and car maintenance costs, which can lead to increased savings elsewhere in your budget.
Carpooling, or car sharing, can be a great way to reduce your carbon footprint. Many employers have commute-match programs that allow employees to find riders for their morning and afternoon commutes. You can also look into other companies in your area that offer car-sharing opportunities. By allowing others to use the same ride every day, you are reducing the number of cars on the road while avoiding the costs of car ownership.
Beware Of Electricity “Vampires”
When appliances are plugged into an outlet but not in use, they continue to draw power from your household circuit. Many devices have a standby mode that automatically turns them off after a period of inactivity. Others are constantly drawing power, even when turned off. These are called “vampires” because they suck up electricity without your knowledge.
To reduce this waste, unplug appliances and electronics at the end of each day, plug computer and entertainment devices into a surge protector strip that can be shut down for an entire home or office building with the push of a button, and have appliances serviced to see if they are still drawing power even when off.
Keep Your Home Warm And Cool
Much energy is wasted in the winter by keeping homes too hot or too cold for your body temperature. To avoid this waste, lower the heat by one degree during the day and at night, and by two degrees during the evening. It may seem trivial but it will add up over time. To save on cooling costs in the summer, close your curtains to block sunlight from heating your home and turn off lights that are not needed. In addition, since air conditioners work best when dry, set a fan to rotate in a window blowing air outside to take advantage of the cool breezes.
Eat Less Meat
Producing meat takes a great deal of water, land, food, and energy resources, making it costly environment-wise. By reducing your consumption of meat you can make more efficient use of natural resources. The same goes for dairy products and eggs, which also take a lot of resources to produce. In addition, by reducing your meat intake you can improve your health by lowering cholesterol and avoiding obesity.
Eat Local And In-Season
Produce from local farmers allows you to save energy since it is not being shipped a long distance. It also tastes better because you will be eating food that has been harvested at its peak of freshness rather than food that was picked green and ripened in transit. Not only that, you will be helping the local economy by paying farmers for their produce instead of buying commercial goods shipped thousands of miles.
Buying fresh ingredients and foodstuffs from local retailers reduces carbon emissions, as the products were often grown nearby and don’t have to be transported long distances. It also helps your local economy and supports sustainable farming practices that may not exist at larger farms on the other side of the country or world.
By recycling products you use every day at home you can reduce the amount of waste going into landfills which takes up space and creates methane gas as it decomposes. Generally speaking, recycling one aluminum can will save enough energy to run a 100-watt bulb for four hours. If you recycle 10 cans, you can also watch your favorite half-hour TV program. In addition, recycling one ton of paper saves 17 trees and 7,000 gallons of water while conserving the equivalent amount of energy used by a household in one month.
So if you are truly serious about reducing your carbon footprint, try to adopt some of the changes listed above. Not only will they make a difference in the environment, but they will also save you money and improve your health. Plus, making these changes can lead to sustainable living that may be required in years to come.