Thursday, May 31, 2012

Energy Saving Tips

Humans have a penchant for taking things for granted whether we admit it or not. It could range from our health, to our loved ones, etc. However, many people tend to take the most important thing in our life for granted that trumps anything else; our planet.

From our wanderlusts, to the shop-a-holics, our planet is probably the last thing we think about when it comes to our everyday lives. We don't think about the behind the scenes of what goes on, the pollution, the resources used to create products or to get to our destination. As the "green" trend grows, this concern is reaching the masses than it has just 5 years ago.

Here are a few tips that I incorporate into my own everyday life:

1. Turn off electronics when not in use. This includes turning off lights that I do not use at home and work. Yes, I am -that person- that turns off lights in unused conference rooms, printer rooms, kitchenettes, etc. I also turn off unused power-strips to save on energy (they use more energy than you think). As far as air conditioning and heating goes, I rarely use them unless of course in the event of extreme "unbearable" weather. Rooming with the boyfriend leads to compromises in the situation.

2. Stop watching television. I haven't watched tv in years with the exception of being over someone's house and it's on. I never realized how quick you can get sucked into watching it. Laptops and computers are excellent to watch all of your movies and favorite shows anyway. Depending on how much you used your television, the savings could be tremendous or almost unnoticeable. Another great thing about not having a television is the need for cable television is gone. How much savings would that be $50, $75, $100 a month? Plus, you'll have more free time!

3. Walk whenever possible. Living right behind a co-op has its advantages. If I need anything I am out of, I can simply walk with my reusable bags and purchase them. Living next to a park and safe area ( I live in an historic town with its own police force, outside of that however, is not so safe ) also has its benefits as well. Going for a run or walk is a breeze and the lake is always beautiful. When I am at work, I always walk (with a co-worker) to the bank or food if I'm feeling adventurous.

4. Use reusable bags. I rarely go anywhere without my reusable bags! I also reuse produce bags for you guessed it fruits and vegetables! I am not sure how much plastic and paper pollution I've saved (I'm sure there is an online generator) but I know it's a good amount! I also do not use any bags at all if I can or if I'm making a big item purchase, I can put loose smaller items inside the container.

5. Use thrift stores. If you must shop, visit your local thrift store. There are so many treasures and clothes in great condition at very affordable prices. For anyone that loves labels, I found a pair of Juicy Couture Jeans for about $11.00 (org around $150)! Your mind, wallet and the Earth will feel great since you are spending less and not purchasing new items which uses resources to produce.

There are a ton of great ideas out there to save energy, reduce pollution and save money. These are my top five favorite since I practice them myself. Even small steps can make a big impact on our Earth to make it a cleaner, brighter, better place.

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