The Painless Changes You Can Make Towards A Green Home
Yes, it’s time for that talk. In case you haven’t noticed, the world is having the hottest year on record. For eleven months in a row, we’ve been warmer than every other year. This April was hotter than last April. October just passed was hotter than all the other Octobers before it. If that isn’t a bit of a wakeup call for us to live more sustainably, I don’t want to know what the tipping point will be. The easiest place to start making those changes in your life is in your very own home. So, let’s look at a few.
Keep the heat in
We’ve been talking about getting cozy for the winter for some time now. It’s easier to do that if you make a few changes to the home. You don’t have to go mad on your energy bill. Instead, focus on how your house maintains its own climate for longer. Make sure you’re insulating properly. Not just fitting insulation in the roof. You should be caulking any gaps in your windows and using draft excluders. You should also insulate your pipes so that your water heater can be a lot more effective at its job.
Take care of your tech
If you want to reduce your energy bill (and your carbon footprint) you need to look at your electronic appliances. There are a few ways to make sure they’re better at their job. For one, make sure they’re cleaned and maintained. A dusty AC is going to be a much less energy efficient AC. The better condition they’re kept in, the more work they can do with less energy. Of course, there comes a time that it’s a lot more energy efficient to think of a replacement. This is particularly true of refrigerators and HVAC equipment. If yours is really starting to show its age, it might be a good idea to find heaters here and other places. They now come with energy ratings so you can make a more responsible choice right off the bat.
Be water conscious
Contrary to what a lot of people might believe, it doesn’t all start and stop with energy use. Your water is just as important a part of living sustainably. Water shortages are already starting to rear their ugly head. As time goes on, it’s believed that it might be one of the greatest crises that we face as species. So let’s start using less now. For instance, you start fitting water-smart heads onto your shower as well as your faucets. Meaning you spend less water for every second that your water is running. If you garden, you should also consider recycling bath and dish water. Grey water, as it’s known, poses no harm to your garden.
Plant a tree
If you have the space for it, then why not go full steam ahead and use that space? For one, trees are gorgeous and you should be happy to have one in your garden. They also shade your home during the summer. That means that indoor climate control is even easier. Most importantly, trees are a habitat. As we keep building houses and cities, we are reducing the amount of homes for nature. Planting a tree means building a home for nature in your own garden. If we don’t start providing a home nature and we keep taking its home, then it has no place to go and simply ceases to be.
The fourth R is replace
Reduce, reuse and recycle are some good lessons to live by. But replacing should be just as big a part of your plan. In particular, you should be reducing the materials that you’re using in your home. For one, let’s look at how we use paper. A lot of us still print out paper for home business and bookkeeping like it comes from the thin air. Going paperless not only makes it easier to organize all your documents but it saves money. As does relying more on reusable cloth wipes than paper towels in the kitchen. There are other tech-y changes you can make in the home, too. For instance, using LED lights instead of your standard ones.
Mind how you clean
This is a tip for those who are both environmentally conscious and concerned about their everyday health. Household cleaners are easily one of the biggest culprits of ground water and air contamination. They’re not only bad for nature. They’re bad for us, too. They can cause asthma and exacerbate breathing conditions. In some serious cases, household cleaners have even shown links to central nervous system damage. Start switching them out for more health and eco-friendly green cleaning alternatives. You’ll be protecting your own health. You’ll also be protecting the water and the health of all the plant life around you. It’s time to put a stop to the toxic effects we have every day without knowing.
Have a meat-free day
I’m not telling you to go all vegan on us. We know that people like their meat. We also know that it’s nutritious and an easy way to contribute to an all-rounded diet. But the fact is that meat production is another one of those huge parts of the carbon footprint that we make on the world. Being more sustainable means using less. The simple fact is that meat is one of the least energy efficient ways of feeding ourselves. The solution is simple. On Monday, just don’t eat meat. There are plenty of great vegetarian options that taste just fine. You can go a day without meat, so do it. It’s the equivalent of not driving your car for a day, after all.
Let’s be honest, none of these changes are all that hard. Soon as we spend some time acclimating, it’s not much of a change at all. So, let’s take the time to get off our backsides and make those changes. Let’s see how far we take it and start working to leave a better planet for our kids.
Tia, and TipsfromTia.com is trying to keep you looking good and
feeling good, from the inside out. If you’ve got a problem or a tip email me! Be sure to Like and share on Facebook or Follow on Twitter or Instagram.