Because living green is important to me and my family, I turned on Oprah’s Going Green 101: What Your Family Can Do Today! show on Friday to see if I could pick up some more tips. While we’re already doing several of the things they discussed on the show, I learned quite a bit more that we can start doing to help save our planet Earth.
I decided to make a list (in no particular order) of things YOU can do RIGHT NOW to help save the world. Many of the things are from Oprah’s show, while some are things I came up with myself or got elsewhere.
Choose one or two to get started, or do them all! Every little bit helps.
Help save the world by…
— Change the light bulbs in your house to energy-efficient Compact Fluorescent Lights (CFL) – CFL’s are four times more efficient and last up to 10 times longer than incandescents. They cost more upfront, but will save you money on your electricity bill almost immediately and they last from 8 to 10 years!
— Buy organic foods whenever possible.
— Unplug your appliances when you aren’t using them. Even if items are in the off position, they are still using energy. Or buy Smart Power Strips to conserve energy and cash.
— Use cloth napkins.
— Take public transportation, carpool, bike or walk.
— Reuse one bottle for your water instead of buying bottled water.
— Bring your own coffee cup/mug/thermos when you go to Starbucks, etc. for your coffee. Starbucks even offers a discount when you bring in your own cup.
— Use cloth grocery bags.
— RECYCLE your plastic, glass, aluminum and paper! Go to Earth911 and enter your zip code to find out what is recyclable in your area.
— Shop at second hand stores for clothing, etc., and donate, give or sell your old clothes, shoes, etc. to others.
— Keep stuff out of the landfills by Freecycling items you no longer need. One person’s trash is another’s treasure!
— Take shorter showers.
— Turn off the water when brushing your teeth or shaving.
— Reduce your meat consumption, better yet – eat vegetarian, or even better still – go vegan. “Nothing will benefit human health and increase the chances of survival of life on earth as much as the evolution to a vegetarian diet.” – Albert Einstein
More Earth-friendly tips, contributed by Leigh:
— Purchase wooden toys, or at least used toys.
— Practice sustainable, green building practices for new homes or remodels (low VOC paint, renewable floors like bamboo, solar/passive solar, native planting, sustainable materials, low-water usage appliances, and so much more).
— If you can, convert your car to a bio-diesel or SVO powered vehicle.
— Compost and use in your garden
— Support businesses who invest in sustainable, earth-friendly practices
— Buy fair-trade (while it’s not directly linked to the earth per se, I believe that peace and fair living practices = respect for the Earth).
— Thank the earth daily.
Some more tips, contributed by Bazu:
— Use cold water when doing laundry. I was a little hesitant at first, but I haven’t noticed any difference in the level of cleanliness in the clothes, and it saves a good amount of energy.
— Keep your freezer full, it cools more efficiently. If you don’t have a lot of food, even ice packs or bags of ice will do.
— Convert your yard/lawn to natural native plants instead of non-local plants or grass. Lawn maintenance is a huge energy sucker.
— Use biodegradable dog poop bags
And Erica recommends:
— Even better than vegan – eat RAW! No energy used to cook the food, and your body will thank you.
Check out these related links:
GreenDimes – Reduce your junk mail by 75-90% and have a tree planted for you each month – all for a dime/day
The Green Book – Full of hundreds of simple environmental solutions that can make a big difference in the world
Breastfeeding and the Environment – Breastmilk is a valuable renewable natural resource that is the most ecologically sound food source available. It is produced and delivered to the consumer without using other resources, and it creates no pollution. In contrast, artificial baby milk production pollutes our land, air, and water and uses up natural resources.
An Inconvenient Truth – Al Gore’s movie about global warming
Top 10 Earth Day Tips from National Geographic’s The Green Guide
Climate Teacher – Focused on helping people understand, communicate, and take action on climate change.
Do you have more tips or sites to share about going green or Earth Day? Please share them with me and I’ll add them to the list.
Mother Earth thanks you.
Happy Earth Day!