Published on January 12th, 2008 | by Stephanie Evans
10 Easy Ways to Reduce Your CO2 Footprint
The average American produces over 100 pounds of carbon dioxide per day! We don’t all have money on hand for the newest appliances or a hybrid car, so here are a few things you can do to lend the planet a hand without spending much time or money:
- Put a lid on it! If you’re heating something on the stove, put a lid over your pot or pan. Boiling water with in a covered pot takes much less time and saves energy too. Also make sure that the pot fits the burner snugly so energy in the form of heat does not escape out around the edges.
- Inflate those tires. Properly inflated tires not only prevent wear and tear on the tires themselves, but they also give your car a couple of extra miles per gallon of gasoline.
- Bring your own grocery bags. Every time you go to the store, paper and plastic bags are manufactured and disposed of for your convenience. Reuse the bags from your last trip or get some canvas ones for long term use.
- Save water. The water that comes out of your faucet has been filtered, cleaned, pumped, and sometimes heated—all energy intensive processes that shouldn’t be taken for granted. Save some water and help save the atmosphere too.
- Get a compact fluorescent bulb. These cost a bit more when you buy them, but the energy savings make up for it quickly. The bulbs also last much longer than regular incandescents, so you’ll spare yourself a few trips to the store.
- Cold water laundry. One of the biggest energy drains in your washing machine is the heat it takes to warm the water. Unless your clothes are terribly soiled, wash your threads on the cold setting—the savings will show on your energy bill.
- Plant a tree. Trees breathe in CO2 and breathe out O2. They store the carbon in their tissues, where it can’t contribute to global warming.
- Grab a sweater or open the window. Heating and air conditioning are one of the biggest energy users in a typical home. Turn your thermostat up a few degrees in the summer and down a few degrees in the winter to make a big dent in carbon dioxide conservation. Even just one or two degrees makes an impact.
- Change your computer settings. We all know that keeping the computer on can be convenient, but if you’re leaving work or going to bed for the night, shut down those energy drainers. For daytime use, set the computer to hibernate after it’s been idle for a few minutes.
- Share! Do you really need your very own lawn mower? Wrench set? Wireless router? Get to know your neighbors and set up a sharing system. Your wallet will thank you, and so will the planet.