Happy Earth Day!
The EPA has some suggestions on how to live more respectively on Earth.
Compost helps improve soil so it holds more water and plants grow better. Allow grass clippings to stay on the lawn, instead of bagging them. The cut grass will decompose and return to the soil naturally. Food scraps and kitchen waste also make good compost, and you save money on fertilizers or other additives. More backyard composting ideas.
If you commute to work, ask if you can work from home at least some days, and you’ll reduce air pollution and traffic congestion – and save money. Reduce greenhouse gases on the road.
Be creative as you look for new ways to reduce the amount or kinds of household waste. Give cardboard tubes to pet hamsters or gerbils. Plant seeds in an egg carton. Make a flower pot out of a plastic ice cream tub. By thinking creatively, you will often find new uses for common items and new ways to recycle and reduce waste. Other creative tips to reduce waste.
If every American home replaced just one conventional light bulb with a compact fluorescent light bulb, we would save enough energy to light more than 3 million homes a year. Find more energy savings.
Keep reusable bags on your car seat or near your door so they are easy to grab when you go. And you can even combine shopping bags – just tell the cashier that you don’t need a bag, then put all your purchases together in one bag just be sure to hang on to your receipts! More tips for shopping.
Exhaust from idling school buses can pollute air in and around the bus, and can enter school buildings through air intakes, doors, and open windows. Constant idling also wastes fuel and money, and school bus engines really need only a few minutes to warm up. More about reducing engine idling.
Just five or more sunburns can really increase your risk of developing skin cancer. The sun’s rays are strongest between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. so at those times, seek shade or wear protective clothing such as a long-sleeved shirt. Sign up to get free UV alerts.
Leaving your car at home just two days a week will reduce greenhouse gas emissions by an average of 1,600 pounds per year. If you can work from home, you’ll reduce air pollution and traffic congestion – and save money. Reduce your carbon footprint.
The average washing machine uses 40.9 gallons of water per load. If you buy a a new washer, shop for a high-efficiency washer that needs less than 28 gallons of water per load. To achieve even greater savings, wash only full loads of laundry or be sure to choose the appropriate load size on the washing machine. More about using water wisely.
Only one percent of all water on the planet is available for humans. Buy fixtures and products that are water efficient – you can use less water to get the same job done just as well. When you go shopping, look for the WaterSense label to find water efficient products. More about WaterSense.
Save even more water, and money on your water bill, by installing a water-efficient showerhead, or ask your landlord to install one if you rent. More about using water wisely.
Run your dishwasher only when it’s full. Don’t pre-rinse dishes – tests show pre-rinsing doesn’t improve dishwasher cleaning, and you’ll save as much as 20 gallons of water per load. When you buy a new dishwasher, look for one that saves water. Water-efficient models use only about only about 4 gallons per wash. More about using water wisely.
eCycle it! Take your old computer, DVD player, or other electronics to an electronics recycling center. Reusing and recycling materials like copper, gold, and others saves natural resources and reduces mining and processing. eCycling also helps avoid land, air, and water pollution by capturing and reusing hazardous substances such as lead or chromium. Find eCycling centers near you.