20 Simple Ways To Save The Planet

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  • September 13, 2012
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It doesn’t take an environmental crusader to save the planet. The state of the environment is a reflection of our collective actions. That’s why in order to take care of the environment and save the planet, it’s up to each and every person to change their daily behaviors. Following these 20 tips can make a difference.

      1. Walk, Ride, Carpool or Take the Bus – So much energy is wasted day in and day out by single-passenger commutes. Walking, riding a bike, carpooling or taking the bus, even just a few times a week, can significantly reduce environmental impacts. As an added bonus, these activities will save money and are a good form of exercise.
      2. Use a Coffee Tumbler – Sure, everyone loves a strong cup of joe in the morning, but think of all the waste that results from purchasing cup after cup after cup. Instead of going for the disposable option, grab a reusable coffee tumbler. What’s best is coffee tumblers keep liquids warmer for longer.
      3. Clean With Natural Products – With millions upon millions of chemicals floating around in the world, the last thing needed is to intentionally disseminate harmful toxins in our homes. Bypass traditional, ammonia-based cleaning products and use vinegar and water, which does the trick without polluting the environment.
      4. Shop With Reusable Grocery Bags – Plastic bags are used everyday, many of which wind up in landfills after only 1 use. Instead of picking “plastic,” invest in a few $1 grocery bags that can be used time and again.
      5. Water the Lawn at Night – Watering the lawn at night can save significant amounts of water by minimizing the amount of evaporation that typically occurs when watering during the day. To save even more water, skip the grass seed and xeriscape the lawn using plants and flowers that require minimal water.
      6. Grow a Garden and Buy Local – Consider the amount of energy it takes to ship food from all over the world to the grocery store and then to home. Growing a garden or buying local is a great way to cut out all of the middle men. Plus, growing food at home means it can be done organically without dangerous pesticides.
      7. Weatherize It – Many homes and business are leaky, wasting hundreds of dollars of hot and cool air each year. Contact an energy auditor to see how to make simple upgrades that can save energy and money. Insulation, air and duct sealing and caulking and weatherstripping are some of the most common ways to reduce energy usage.
      8. Compost – Everyday, millions of naturally biodegradable items are thrown into the garbage and shipped to a landfill where they biodegrade more slowly and bring no nutrition back to the earth’s soil. Compost is a great way to reduce waste, expedite the bio-degradation process, and return needed nutrients back to the soil.
      9. Buy In Bulk – Buying in bulk helps cut down on the waste produced from packaging so purchase in bulk when possible and reuse containers.
      1. Line Dry Clothes – An alternative to using the dryer is to line dry clothes. This saves considerable amounts of energy and is especially a great option during warmer, summer months.
      2. Bring Your Own Bottle – Rather than purchase a bottle of water that will be used one time and thrown out or recycled, bring a water bottle in tow and fill it up for free. This will reduce considerable amounts of waste.
      3. Reduce Paper Mail – Talk to anyone and they will likely say that they’re inundated with junk mail. This is waste paper (and trees) that may never even get read. Cancel junk mail by contacting the sender and switch to paperless billing options.
      4. Look for Used Goods – “Used” doesn’t have to mean second class. In fact, people sell and give away so many treasures – clothes, furniture, sporting equipment, etc. – that buying used can be fun! Also, the used option is good for the environment, because it offsets the need to manufacture new stuff that requires the earth’s resources.
      5. Inflate Tires – Simply put, cars that operate with properly inflated tires will get better gas mileage. Check the manufacturer’s specifications and make sure the tires are adequately filled to go farther for less.
      6. Collect Rainwater – Instead of using water from the tap to water the plants, leave a bucket outside to collect rain water. Water is scarce in many parts of the world. Plus, saving water means also saving the energy required to push water through the pipes.
      7. Turn It Off – Be cognizant to turn off electrical devices when they’re not in use. This includes shutting the lights off when leaving the room, turning off the computer and TV when no one is using them.
      8. Turn on the Fan – Air conditioning is a modern day miracle, especially for those who live in really warm climates. While it might be out of the question on days with extreme temperature, try turning on the fan in replace of an air conditioner when it’s not too hot.
      9. Recycle Electronics and Batteries – Just because an electronic device is outdated or broken, does not mean it should wind up in the trash. Many electronics devices, like computer and cell phones, and batteries have toxins in them. If they wind up in the dump, this opens the possibility for hazardous waste to reenter our environment through the air (if trash is incinerated) or water (if there is ground leakage).
      10. Skip the Preheat – There is no need to wait to for the oven to be preheated to start cooking. Putting a dish into the oven right when it’s turned on means will heat the dish up more quickly and ultimately mean less energy is used to cook the dish.
      11. Use Cloth Napkins – Think about how much paper (and trees) could be saved by cutting out paper napkins and paper towels. Instead of using disposable napkins and paper towels, use cloth napkins and cloth cleaning rags.