Reduce your carbon footprint with these ideas from Blain’s Farm & Fleet.
Your carbon footprint is basically the amount of CO2 (greenhouse gas) a person produces by their daily activities that contribute to global warming. Altering every day chores and activities can make a huge impact. We have listed a few small ways to reduce your carbon footprint.
11 Ways to Reduce Your Carbon Footprint
1. One-Stop Shops – How many weekends have you spent running all day to get your list of errands completed? Think outside the norm of where you do most of your shopping. Stores that conveniently offer a wide variety of products and services will help you save fuel and energy. Especially during the holiday season when traffic is heavier, look for a store that offers options to purchase something for everyone. Most of all, support businesses that are also making efforts to go green.
2. Avoid Bottled Water – Bottled water is usually collected in one place, packaged in another and then shipped all over the world. Forget it! There are companies that offer so many alternatives to buying expensive, energy wasting bottles of water. One reusable water bottle can replace up to 300 plastic water bottles.
3. Unplug It – While you’re at work, how many people stop by to watch your TV? How many times have you surfed the internet in your sleep? When you’re not using it, unplug it. Electrical devices such as your TV, laptop, cell phone charger and stereo continue to use energy in standby mode when they are not in use. To make it easy, get a power strip and turn of a number of electronic with the flip of one switch.
4. Energy Proof Your Home – How happy would you be if your monthly utility bills dropped by up to 30% during your effort to help save the planet? It’s a win/ win situation and there are countless ways to reduce your energy usage at home. Compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFL) use one fifth to one third of the power that regular bulbs use while lasting eight to fifteen times longer.
5. Use Rechargeable Batteries – Rechargeable batteries are great for your most frequently used items such as garage remote controls, television remotes and cameras since they can be used hundreds of times and for years. This requires fewer batteries to be made and less to be disposed of.
6. Insulate Windows – If you feel like your home is losing heat in the winter or cool air in the summer, try insulation kits or window seals. These are great ways to keep the warm or cold air secure inside your house so your furnace and air conditioner don’t have to work overtime.
7. Wash in Cold Water and Air Dry: Brrrr… we don’t mean your body! Try washing full loads of clothes on cold water cycles to reduce energy needed to heat the water. If old habits are hard to break, try going from hot to warm water washes. Studies show significant energy savings from even turning down your hot water setting two degrees. Try drying clothes on a clothesline during warmer months. Time to replace your washer and dryer? Try high energy models. High energy models use an overall fraction of energy and water.
8. Maintain Your Vehicle – Most people believe the myth that Hybrid cars are the only solution to conserving energy on the road. That is not true. Most well-maintained vehicles use less fuel and produces smaller amounts of CO2. Your vehicle should be regularly serviced and checked. Things like poor tire inflation can lead to less fuel efficient driving. Better fuel life prevents the need to use and produce non-reusable fuel as well as saves you gas money. Change air filters to avoid unnecessary release of CO2 in emissions.
9. Carpool With Co-Workers and Friends – When going to work or events, you might want to try to combine a planet conscious group of people to carpool. Just remember to drive the most well-maintained and fuel friendly vehicle from the bunch!
10. Spend time with friends and family – Here’s a freebie for you. Entertaining and cooking for groups is actually energy efficient since a large number of people are sharing one power source instead of using the same amount of energy in numerous houses. Plus, having friends and family is good for the heart. If you choose to make it a movie night, having a large crowd watching one television saves more energy than everyone watching separately. To save more money, try a game night. Then you get the added bonus of reconnecting and learning about each other again.
11. Cook Efficiently – There are many energy efficient ways to cook a large meal such as an oven roaster or a slow cooker. One pot dishes are very popular for green living. You can create an entire balanced meal in one pot including meat, vegetables, fruits, dairy and even sauce. Try chili or a roast with vegetables and potatoes.
Small changes can make the biggest difference. If every person tackled just a few of these small lifestyle changes, our carbon footprint would be reduced drastically and make an immeasurable impact globally. Let’s leave the world a beautiful, safe place.