Green Habits

For Yourself

  1. Appreciate the Earth and all its beings. 
  2. Go for a walk in nature.  Click here to visit a National Park
  3. Meditate in Nature
  4. For a deep immersion into nature, go on a Wilderness Solo

For the Planet

Conscious Consuming – Before you make a purchase, do a quick check to yourself.

  1. Do I really “need” this product?
  2. Is the product I need eco-friendly?
  3. Is there another product I can buy that will use less of the Earth’s resources?

Your Home

Recycle, Recycle, Recycle
By recycling just half of your household waste, you can prevent 2,400 pounds of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere.  If your neighborhood does not offer a recycling program, visit Earth 911 and they will help you.  Also click here to recycle obscure materials.

Reduce, Reduce, Reduce
Only buy products you need.  If you reduce your spending, you will not only be saving money, but you are helping save the environment by consuming less natural resources. Purchase products that are eco-friendly.
Household products

Eliminate Junk Mail
Remove your name from mailing lists.  More than 4 million tons, 62,000,000 billion pieces of junk mail are printed yearly.  Some sources believe the number is as high as 90 billion pieces.   Each person receives over 560 pieces of junk mail each year, over 40% of which never gets opened.   Amazingly, 2.8 million cars consume less energy than it takes to produce and dispose of the junk mail.  Each year over 100 million trees are destroyed to produce junk mail. Please visit these sites to eliminate your junk mail.
http://www.epa.gov/epawaste/index.htm
http://www.41pounds.org/
http://www.obviously.com/junkmail/

Lights
Substitute your current lights with compact fluorescent light bulbs (cfl’s).  The CFL bulb needs 60% less energy than a normal light bulb.  This easy substitute will prevent approximately 300 pounds of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere each year. If all US households made this substitute, they would prevent over 90 billion pounds of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere each year.  Go to Energy Federation to purchase CFL’s online.

Thermostat
Adjust your thermostat up 2 degrees in the summer and down 2 degrees in the winter.

By taking this simple step, you would prevent 2,000 pounds of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere.  Cooling and heating your home makes up approximately half of the your home energy needs.  Therefore, you could save a lot of money as well by making this simple adjustment.  In fact, investing in a programmable thermostat will most likely pay for itself the first year.  By lowering the air conditioning or heat before you go to bed and raising it when you wake up each night, this could save you $100.00 a year.  For more suggestions on how to save energy, go to the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy. 

Filters
Filter Cleaning and replacement on your air conditioner and furnace can prevent approximately 350 pounds of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere each year.

Appliances
Invest in Appliances that are Energy Efficient.  Choose appliances that have the Energy Star Label them.  U.S. households would prevent 175 million tons or carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere each year.

Water
Placing an insulation blanket around your water heater will prevent 1,000 pounds of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere.  If you place the setting to 120 degrees Fahrenheit, you will prevent an additional 550 pounds of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere.  Visit American Water to find out ways to save water.

Electrical Devices
Turn off your lights, computer, TV, and stereo if you are not using them.  Simply plug your devices into a power strip and turn that one switch off when you leave.  This simple step will prevent thousands of pounds of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere.

Insulate your home
If you do this, you could prevent 2,000 pounds of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere.  You also receive the added benefit of saving approximately 25% of your energy bill.  For great tips on how to insulate your home, visit Consumer Federation of America.

Energy
Tired of getting electric bills in the mail?  Substitute your home’s current power source with renewable power source such as solar or wind.  To learn more, go to Green Power Network .

Food
Eating organic local food helps the environment!  Producing and transporting food consumes a lot of fuel and energy.  Here are the facts:

  1. The average meal you eat has traveled 1,200 miles.  If you buy local food, it will not have to travel as far. Visit the USDA website to find a local farmer’s market in your neighborhood.
  2. Eat more vegetarian and less meat.  The second most contributing greenhouse gas next to carbon dioxide is methane.  Cows exhale methane because of their grassy diets.  More importantly, however, is that most of the forests being destroyed are converted into grazing lands for the cows. The average meat diet demands almost ten times more land than a vegetarian diet.  When the forests are destroyed, not only does natural habitat get wiped out, but it releases over a billion tons of greenhouse gasses into the atmosphere each year.  Giving up just one meat meal each week and you would conserve 40,000 gallons of water, 70 tons of grain, and prevent 300 pounds of greenhouse gasses from entering the atmosphere each year!

Watch An Inconvenient Truth
An eye opening movie that should be watched by all.

Plant Trees!!!  Link to Become a RainforestMaker
You don’t have to be a treehugger to love trees!
Click here to learn why trees are valuable and important.

Your Work

The first 5 steps will save you money!!!

  1. Turn lights off - connect your electrical devices to a power strip and shut it off when you leave.
  2. Recycle, Recycle, Recycle
  3. Use a glass or ceramic cup to drink, not a paper cup, plastic bottle or can.
  4. Use email instead of paper to send mail, documents, reports, and records.
  5. Use the double sided feature on your copier whenever possible.
  6. Purchase 100 percent post-consumer waste, non-chlorinated paper.

As reported by conservation.org, forty percent of all solid waste is generated from a variety of paper products. Office paper comprises a quarter of that waste, and less than 20 percent of office wastepaper in the U.S. is recovered for recycling. Post-consumer content refers to products that have completed their lives as consumer items, and, if not recycled, would otherwise be disposed of as solid waste. One hundred percent post-consumer waste paper stock is made completely from recycled products. When buying paper, remember, the higher the percentage of post consumer waste, the larger the amount of recycled material in the paper stock.

The majority of paper is chlorinated or bleached to a bright white, creating a pollution by-product. Many paper companies now offer a selection of non-chlorinated paper to avoid this. Look for totally chlorine-free paper stocks (TCF); processed chlorine-free paper (PCF) that contains recycled content produced without chlorine or its derivatives; partially processed chlorine-free paper stock (%PCF); and elementally chlorine-free paper stock (ECF), virgin paper produced without chlorine but with chlorine derivatives. Non-chlorinated paper is more natural in color, but is of the same high quality as the bleached variety.

Your Travel

  1. Plant trees when you travel!   Here are some good guidelines:

    1 tree every 2,000 miles (3200 km) by car
    1 tree every 1300 miles (2000 km) by plane
    1 tree every 100 gallons (375 liters) of gasoline
    1 tree every 1000 kilowatt-hours (one kwhr ~= 1.9 pounds CO2)

  2. Alternative Travel.

    As you might expect, transportation vehicles are one of the biggest contributors of carbon dioxide.   There are several options you can choose from when traveling, all of which would have a lesser impact on the Earth and your wallet.  For example, you can
    Walk    Walk to work.  Click here to learn more

    Bike    Bike to work.  Click here to learn more

    Carpool     Trying this only twice a week will prevent 1,590 pounds of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere.  Visit erideshare.com which is a free service that connects commuters. Also visit the Commuter Page For more information

    Carshare    These are great alternatives for people who want a car.   You pay a  reasonable membership fee and this covers your insurance, maintenance, and your gas!  Visit ZipCar to find out more.

    Public Transportation   Visit the American Public Transportation Association

    Telecommute     Ever consider working from home?  You could save a considerable amount of money and be helping the environment at the same time.  Visit for more information .

    Hybrids – Choose a more fuel efficient vehicle. http://www.greenercars.org/      http://www.epa.gov/autoemissions

Your Car

Inflate your tires
Your gas mileage will improve by at least 3%. You will also prevent 20 pounds of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere for each gallon of gas that you save. Visit Car Care to learn tips on proper inflation.

Regular Maintenance.
Keeping your car regularly maintained will improve your gas mileage and reduce carbon dioxide emissions. If only 1% of automobile owners regularly maintained their car, they would prevent approximately one billion pounds of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere.