How to Reduce Your Carbon Footprint
Here are a few tips and tricks on how to reduce your carbon footprint. There are plenty more, but if you are just starting out on your ecological path, this is a great way to start!
A Green House - Choose a smaller house because that would mean less energy being used and less materials needed for its construction, maintenance and occupation. - Pick a home that is close to your work, your school, your leisure activities and your public transportation. - Install a programmable thermostat, since this could help reduce your heating bill by approximately 5 to 10%. - During hot days, opt for fans instead of an air conditioning – you will use 10 times less electricity that way. - Lower your thermostat by one or two degrees and throw on a sweater during the winter. - Dry your clothes on a clothesline or on your bathroom curtain rod. - When thawing food from the freezer, take them out ahead of time and leave them overnight in the refrigerator instead of using hot water or the microwave. - Turn off the tap while shaving or brushing your teeth. - Take shorter showers and only bathe on special occasions since a bath can take up to 270 liters more water than a shower. - Use a broom to clean your driveway instead of the hose. - Keep water in the fridge instead of letting the water run until it becomes cold. - Fix faucet drips as quickly as you can.
Food - Eat less meat, eggs and dairy products since raising farm animals pollutes more than all modes of transportation combined. - Purchase as much locally-produced food as you can. - Opt for organic food since pesticides can permanently damage soil. - Use whole foods instead of processed foods when cooking. - Do not buy bottled water or use single-serve coffee makers that work with throw-away, disposable cups, such as a Keurig. - Grow your own fruits and vegetables.
Traveling - Bike, walk or rollerblade to your destination. Or, if you can’t, use public transportation or carpool. - When driving, do not use the air conditioning, do not drive too fast, always keep the recommended amount of air pressure in your tires, keep all unnecessary weight off (such as a luggage rack on the roof when it is not in use) and travel as light as possible. - Run all of your errands in the same car trip to keep traveling to a minimum.
Reducing waste - Before purchasing a product, think about what you will do with it once you no longer need it and keep purchases to the ones that would cause the least amount of waste possible. - Opt for quality over quantity. - Reduce your temptation to buy things you don’t really need by ignoring commercials and ads. - Share what you can, such as books, DVDs, CDs and any item you don’t use often. - Borrow instead of buying, like taking books out from the library. - When trying to decide between two similar products, choose the one that has less packaging. - Reuse paper (by using the reverse), ink cartridges, and rechargeable batteries.
Photo credits: flickr.com