- As they say, “a man’s home is his castle,” so make it green!
– Conduct an energy audit to locate high-energy use areas in your home.
– Make sure your home is well-sealed—it will reduce your heating and cooling needs; wear a sweater and set the thermostat a bit lower.
– Remember to turn off the lights; buy compact fluorescent light bulbs, which use 75-80% less electricity.
– Minimize your water use, utilize water reduction gadgets in the shower and toilet; add solar panels for heating water.
– Upgrade your appliances—the latest versions use as much as 40% less energy than older models. Unplug your appliances when you are not using them. Once your gadgets are charged up, unplug them from the charger and the charger from the outlet, it will save a tremendous amount of electricity (cell phones, tablets, computers, etc.).
– Use a laptop at home, or Tablet, rather than a desktop computer. Energy experts say that a laptop is 80% more energy efficient than a desktop computer.
– Buy local produce, cutting down on the amount of food that has to be transported. Reports estimate that as much as 29% of greenhouse gas emissions comes from production and transportation of product, including packaging. If you reuse, recycle, compost and buy local you will make a big contribution toward reducing this percentage.
– This may not be great for print media, but subscribe to electronic versions of your favorite newspapers and magazines, cutting out the paper waste that accumulates from all your subscriptions.
- Green-up your transportation plan
Today there are many mixed-use communities that minimize, if not eliminate, the need to commute to work, shopping, entertainment and other centers. If you are able to, consider residing in one of these environmentally friendly communities. If not, there are other things you can do, such as:
– Leave the car in the driveway and walk or bike to work
– Carpool, or use public transportation
– If you must drive, keep your car tuned-up, choose an energy efficient model, lower your speed, keep your tires fully inflated and try to consolidate your trips.
- Have your own business?
– Develop a carbon footprint reduction plan for your office, and if you own the building or manage buildings, for all your infrastructure.
– Once again, begin with an energy audit, utilize green technologies for heating, cooling, window and entrance/exit design, exterior building material, and water systems (drinking and bathrooms).
– Install energy-saving equipment, lighting and light controls that automatically shut off when no one is in the room.
– Put a plan in place to reduce the amount of carbon output from your office/building from waste and other product that exits from the premises.
– Encourage and set up a mechanism for your employees to carpool or use public transportation, reduce the need for staff travel by conducting meetings via skype or other virtual meeting platforms.
These are just a few tips to help you reduce your carbon footprint. There are numerous organizations that can assist you to deploy these and many more environmentally friendly, carbon-reducing measures in your home and office.