Ways to GREEN Your Home
- Switch to green power (energy produced by renewable means).
- Switch as many of light bulbs over time to compact fluorescent lamps (CFL) or light-emitting diodes (LED).
- Switch at least one appliance to an energy-efficient model and be sure to look for the ENERGY STAR® label).
- Unplug unused chargers and appliances.
- Reduce water use and fix or replace leaking faucets and toilets.
- Lower the temperature on hot water heater until tap temperature is 125°F.
- Buy low-VOC (volatile organic compound) products, such as paint and cleaning products, which not have the same harsh toxins as high-VOC products. Look for non-toxic, biodegradable options for cleaners.
- Save a tree and buy 100 percent post-consumer recycled products for all paper needs.
- Use environmentally friendly flooring, such as bamboo, cork or eucalyptus, which replenish themselves more quickly in nature than other types of trees used for floors. Alternatively, use synthetic flooring options such as linoleum, recycled content tile or non-VOC carpet.
- Plant trees to provide shade and wind protection for the home.
- Use native plants, which are adapted to a particular soil and climate, saving time and money to nurture them.
- Leave grass clippings on lawn, which decompose and make good fertilizer.
- Minimize use of pesticides.
- Clean and “green” indoor living space with indoor plants, such as spider plants, Boston ferns, rubber plants and palm trees, which are especially effective absorbers of harmful pollutants emitted from carpets, furniture and electronic equipment.
- Use manual, human-powered equipment instead of electric appliances, such as manual can openers, whisks and walk-behind lawn mowers.
- Buy local.
- Reduce fossil fuel, plastic and paper consumption needed for transportation.
- Buy unbleached paper, which reduces the accumulation of harmful byproducts in the air, water and soil over time produced during the bleaching process.
- Request removal from junk mail lists by contacting the Direct Marketing Association’s Mail Preference Service, P.O. Box 643, Carmel, NY 10512, or by visiting www.dmachoice.org.
- Opt out of credit card or insurance offers at OptOutPrescreen.com or by calling 888-567-8688.
- Carry reusable shopping bags instead of using paper or plastic bags.
- Reduce use of plastics bags and bottles as plastic production from petroleum is one of the main contributors of global warming, according to the EPA, and plastic disposal in landfills increases greenhouse gases.
- Recycle old cell phones, batteries, televisions and other electronics so they do not end up in landfills.
- Build a compost pile.
- Install a rain barrel that can collect rainwater for watering plants.
- Buy organic linens.
- Avoid taking your clothes to the dry cleaners, as the solutions they use are highly toxic.
- Donate used goods to charity instead of throwing them away.
- Use durable goods such as cloth napkins at dinner instead of paper towels or real instead of paper plates.
- Recycle glass, plastic, aluminum cans and paper.
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