For many of us, the new year brings resolutions of better living. We hope that you'll consider taking these easy steps in your life to save energy in your home.
- Low-flow shower head. Switch to a low-flow shower head and you have just taken the most effective step in saving water in your home. This cheap fixture will pay for itself in a year in what you save in water bills.
- Faucet water saver. This dandy fixture on your kitchen or bathroom faucet lets you adjust the amount of water when washing dishes or brushing your teeth. Those extra seconds will add up to a lot of gallons saved!
- Compact fluorescent light bulbs. We all know we should switch from those energy-losing incandescent light bulbs. Each bulb will save over $30 in your electricity bill, and you'll be saving more than 2,000 pounds of carbon dioxide from contributing to global warming, too. More info
- Renewable energy. I opted to get my home electricity from wind energy through my electric utility, costing me 2 cents extra per kilowatt hour. For reducing my climate change impact, I think that's worth it! To find out renewable energy options in your state, ask your utility company or visit http://www.green-e.org/gogreene.shtml.
- Paperless bills. This is so easy: choose to get your bills online from your utilities, credit card company, bank, and phone company. Sixty-three billion checks are written each year in the United States: imagine how much paper we could save if we all paid bills online?
- Offset travel. We've become a traveling society, and all those air miles are building up carbon in our air. Offsetting each trip with clean energy for someone else is easy, and doesn't cost as much as you'd think. There are a dozen different companies out there; ones that I like are terrapass.com and nativeenergy.org.
- Wash laundry in cold water. About 90% of energy used to do laundry is to heat water. Your clothes will also last longer when washed in cold water.
- Unplug it! More than 5% of a typical home's energy bill comes from electricity "leaked" from appliances that are plugged in and turned off. Unplugging electronics and things like cell phone charges when not in use will save on your electricity bill.
These small changes in your life will do a big part in helping to reduce global warming and save natural resources for future generations.
We at Conscious Consuming hope that this new year will bring health and happiness to you and your loved ones!