You don’t have to grow all your own food or switch to renewable sources of energy to be eco-conscious. It only takes a few simple changes to make a difference.
Conscientious global citizenship starts at your doorstep. A commitment to recycle, use alternative cleaning chemicals, and other minor changes around the home will offer real benefits to our environment, your health and overall happiness.
The terms reduce and recycle may seem cliché, but they present the best way to lighten the load at landfills. Here are some more easy ways to make your home eco-friendly.
Switch to energy efficient appliances
Your appliances account for almost 20 percent of your home’s total energy bill, with the refrigerator being the biggest energy hog. If you’re still using appliances that are more 10 years old, you should switch to energy-efficient models and reduce your energy bills. Look for new models with the Energy Star logo since these appliances use up to 50 percent less energy than standard models. The Energy Providers in Alberta site provides more energy saving tips for you to follow.
Use the dial
The costs for heating and cooling account for up to 50 percent of your home’s energy bill. Turn the thermostat down in the winter and up in the summer. One degree won’t make a significant difference in the home’s atmosphere, but you’ll save up to 5 percent on your energy usage. Get a programmable thermostat so you won’t be guilty of using heat or air conditioning when your home is unoccupied. Use ceiling fans strategically to aid the even flow of heat or cooling. Change your air filters regularly during the months when your furnace undergoes heavy usage and get a new furnace and air conditioner if you don’t have energy efficient ones.
Water is a valuable resource, so use it wisely. Install aerators on your household faucets and you’ll reduce your annual usage by 50 percent. A low-flow toilet uses 1.8 gallons less water to flush than traditional models, so install new toilets. Turn off the water when you brush your teeth and use the water cans instead of the hose to water your garden.
The toxic ingredients in most household products are not only harmful to the environment but also to your family’s health. Look for eco-friendly cleaners, or better yet, make your own. Simple ingredients like baking soda, vinegar, borax, and lemon juice will get the job done just as well.
Let there be light
Replace your incandescent bulbs with compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFL) and conserve energy. CFLs cost more upfront, but they use 66 percent less energy and last 10 times longer, so the investment will pay for itself.
Plant a tree
Plant a few trees around your property to improve your air quality and provide shade. Your home will be a lot cooler, so you’ll reduce the load on your air conditioner. Use a compost heap instead of synthetic fertilizers. Native plants support the native animals and require less attention, so use them where possible.
Environmental responsibility lies with all of us. Use the aforementioned tips to improve your home, health and the environment.
Today’s Guest Blogger:
Jude Robertson is a long time proponent of the planet. Now retired, he likes to write about ways to protect the Earth.
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