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101 Ways To Green Your Life
Open your window curtains as the weather gets colder outside. Doing this during the day, and closing them at night will conserve the most energy.
Buy online! Buying music and videos online avoids the need for wasteful and excessive packaging associated with CDs and DVDs.
Save energy with your cell phone! New cell phone software can help you to track and reduce your carbon footprint.
Learn from nature! The field of Biomimicry studies nature's tools to help us develop products and processes that have a reduced environmental impact.
"Green" collar jobs are seen by many as the path to future economic stability and environmental stewardship. Support local environmental initiatives!
Printing excess paper off the web? Green Print is a free software which helps eliminate waste.
Do you read? Visit the local library to borrow books instead of buying them: save money, save resources, save the environment.
Go paperless! Use online banking and periodicals, send emails instead of letters and ask cashiers to hold the receipt.
Rechargeable batteries! One rechargeable battery can replace up to 1000 regular ones; that equals 999 hazardous batteries diverted from the waste stream.
Old cell phones? Take them to a local electronics recycler instead of throwing them in the trash.
Bring your own mug! Did you know that most paper coffee cups cannot be recycled or composted due to their composition?
Using wood for a project? Look for a wood certified by a standard like FSC.
Plant a tree! This spring is the perfect opportunity to plant a tree and help conserve our environment. Trees help to sequester CO2 and clean our air!
Interested in sustainability? Join the movement by contributing to environmental stewardship in your community. Volunteer, organize, educate, and take action.
bring your lunch to work! The packaging associated with take-out food has a significant environmental impact. Reusable packaging is much better.
constantly on your cell phone? Use a solar cell phone charger to power your cell phone with green, renewable energy.
taking the car today? Transportation accounts for roughly 30% of Greenhouse Gas Emissions in North America.
on vacation? Inform hotel housekeeping staff that you don't need bed linen changed every day. This choice saves significant water and energy.
around the house
energy efficient appliances are one of the smartest choices you can make! Save money and help conserve the environment.
seal it up! By ensuring windows and doors are properly sealed against drafts, a homeowner can save up to 30% of their heating costs!
flat is better! When selecting your next computer go for a LCD flat screen monitor rather than a traditional CRT, they use less energy.
solar thermal panels are the most cost effective source of renewable energy; using the sun's energy to fulfill water heating needs.
furnace filters must be replaced on a regular basis to increase energy efficiency, reduce emissions and save money.
fix that leaky faucet! A dripping water fixture can waste thousands of gallons of water a year. That is fresh, clean water going down the drain!
selecting a new air conditioner? Find one that is CFC and HCFC free. CFCs and HCFCs are greenhouse gases which contribute to climate change.
switch to on demand! On Demand water heaters are up to 35% more energy efficient than traditional storage tank water heaters.
new computer? Look for the Energystar label for energy efficiency.
how much waste do you produce? Monitor how much household waste you create, to see what you can do to reduce it! It can be very rewarding.
do you know your flow? Check your water fixtures: toilets, faucets and showers to ensure they use water efficiently; if not, change them out.
trying to recycle your electronic waste? Use a company that is E-Steward Certified to ensure ethical waste recycling.
vacuum appliances! By vacuuming dirt and dust from behind your refrigerator and other appliances, you can save considerable amounts of energy.
caulk it! As colder weather approaches, it is important to ensure your home is properly sealed; a little leak can translate into huge energy costs.
staple-less stapler! If everyone converted to a staple-less stapler some countries could conserve over 70 tonnes of steel a year!
outdoor lights turned on all night? Set lights to a timer to reduce light pollution and conserve energy.
contribute your used goods to reuse centers instead of throwing them in the trash. Your waste might be someone else's treasure.
planning a family vacation? Try a lower carbon alternative to flying, like driving or taking a train to your destination.
biodegradable shampoos! They are gentler on your hair and help to reduce your impact on natural ponds, lakes and oceans.
off peak hours! Using home appliances during these times to reduce the amount of energy entering the grid from sources such as coal and oil.
play board games with your family for a great way to have fun and reduce the amount of energy consumed by televisions and computers.
try organic Instead! The use of chemical fertilizers on your lawn can lead to the degradation of natural aquatic ecosystems in your area.
buy voc-free! Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) are carcinogenic chemicals emitted by paints, finishes and fabrics.
going to the market? Buy locally grown produce to reduce the environmental cost of transportation and support the local economy.
spring cleaning? You can donate many of your unwanted items to reuse centers instead of throwing them in the garbage.
driving the speed limit improves gas mileage
collect rainwater to use for your indoor plants. Collect the water in pails when it rains and use it to water your indoor plants.
buy in bulk! When shopping for groceries go for the bulk options to reduce packaging waste associated with individually wrapped items.
starting your spring gardening? Consider using native plants in your flower beds, they are hardier and require less water.
do you really need all that packaging? Purchase products that have little or no packaging to reduce the amount of waste going to landfill.
Compact Fluorescent Light (CFL) bulbs! You can save up 75% of the electricity consumed per light fixture by converting!
seal it! Weatherproof your doors and windows– 62% of your energy bill comes from heating your home.
wondering what that organic label means? No pesticides, herbicides or harmful fertilizers were used in the production of the product.
load your clothing dryer appropriately. An overloaded dryer is much less efficient.
buy durable products that won't go out of style to help save energy and resources.
compost it instead! Did you know that the conditions present in a garbage landfill make it hard for organic material to break down as it naturally would?
what is your carbon footprint? Use online carbon calculators to see how much Carbon Dioxide you contribute to our atmosphere every year.
turn the lights off when you are not using them. It is a simple and effective way to help the environment and reduce your energy bill.
reduce your water use! Install a 0.5 gpm aerator on bathroom faucets and reduce water use by up to 5 times when brushing your teeth!
harvest rainwater at home to use in irrigation and indoor plumbing fixtures. Rainwater systems are becoming increasingly affordable.
unplug your electronics when not in use! Many electronic devices such as toasters continue to draw energy even when not in use.
track your electricity use! Kilowatt meters are often available for purchase from local hardware stores, or to borrow from libraries and community centers.
spring cleaning is just around the corner! Ensure you use Green Seal or EcoLogo certified cleaning products when you undertake this annual task.
worried about the economic downturn? Invest in energy efficiency & take advantage of government rebates to reduce home energy use.
dual flush toilets, aerated faucets and high efficiency shower heads can help to produce up to 50% water savings at your home.
old refrigerator? Did you know that a new refrigerator uses 40% less energy that the equivalent model in 1993? Make the switch!
need that beer fridge? That old, inefficient refrigerator running in the basement could cost you $150 or more per year in electricity.
using natural cleaning products? Simple things like baking soda, borax and vinegar are healthy and environmentally friendly alternatives.
limit showers to 4 minutes, this can save over 25,000 L of water a year. Install water efficient shower heads and save approximately 10 L of water a minute.
set your heating and cooling for appropriate temperatures. A 1 degree temperature difference can save up to 15% of the energy used in your home.
get your car tuned up regularly and keep your tires properly inflated. Proper maintenance can increase your car's fuel efficiency by 10 percent.
do you have outdoor lights? Try replacing them with solar versions. There are many new, high quality products on the market.
health and beauty
take the stairs! By avoiding the elevator you will stay fit, and help your building conserve energy. Set up a competition at work to see who can "stair" the most.
eat less meat! Eating less meat is one of the most effective ways to help conserve our environment, try substituting just one meal a week.
make smart restaurant choices. Choose restaurants that serve local, organic and fair trade goods to promote a healthier local environment and economy.
buy in season! Buying local seasonal fruits and vegetables helps reduce carbon emissions and the need for extensive transportation.
put a lid on it! Place lids on your pots when pre-boiling water for cooking; this simple action contributes to huge energy savings.
going to the gym everyday? Get outside and take advantage of the beautiful spring weather instead; bike to work instead of driving!
enjoying a hot drink in the morning? Make the socially and environmentally smart choice: purchase fair trade coffees and teas.
bring a reusable water bottle to help you stay hydrated. It is much better for the environment than purchasing disposable ones.
get outside and volunteer for a local environmental organization. Look for tree planting or community clean-up activities.
purchasing a yoga mat? Look for one that is organic!
while at the office
selecting products for your office? Avoid products such as PVC or those with high VOC contents as their emissions are carcinogenic.
keep plants in your home or office! They can significantly increase the quality of the indoor air in these spaces, creating a healthier environment.
save paper! When taking notes or printing casual documents, reuse the blank side of previously printed documents.
using a smart power bar? Smart power bars detect turned off appliances, ensuring they do not waste energy in standby mode.
daylighting sensors! They detect incoming daylighting levels and adjust interior lights automatically. This makes for a more comfortable environment and saves money.
renovating your office or home? Use motion sensor lighting and LED fixtures to enhance energy savings and help mitigate climate change.
new computer? Check out the EPEAT website to help you select the most environmentally friendly computer products rated for energy and life-cycle costs.
new office furniture? Try to find products that are "Green Guard" certified as they emit fewer toxins and are better for your health.
reduce your carbon footprint by purchasing renewable, carbon free energy. Providers are available throughout North America.
greening your building portfolio? Try LEED certification, it is an internationally recognized environmental building standard.
buy recycled paper. Buying products with a high-recycled content is just as important as recycling the products you use.
energy star compliant appliances are rated to the highest standards in energy and water efficiency. Smart for the budget, smart for the planet.
printing your emails? Consider the environment and keep your emails stored in digital form.
working on a marketing campaign? Remember to use Forest Stewardship Council paper products to ensure the sustainability of our forests.
choosing product & service suppliers? Check out their environmental reports and factor their stewardship into your decision.
turn off your monitor when shutting down your computer. Your computer screen consumes 60% of the energy used by an entire computer.
upgrading electronic devices? Continuously doing this has a negative environmental impact. Buy products which will meet your needs over a long period of time.
ink jet printers use only 3% of the energy used by a comparable laser jet printer. If you remember to recycle ink cartridges, ink jets are a better choice.
using or producing consumables such as paper cups of plastic cutlery? Use biodegradable consumables instead.
a lighting retrofit can help to save energy and money. Perform an energy audit in your office to find out how it might affect your bottom line.
use task lighting instead of overhead lighting. Using task directed lighting can yield energy savings of 15% and is more appealing to a worker.Courtesy of Ecovert sustainability consultants
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