Green DIY: 10 Ways of Minimizing your Carbon Footprint

Takers and Givers: Deforestation, air and water pollution and the plundering of our natural resources are some of the real “big” issues that surrounds us and the devastating effects on our environment cannot be ignored. Huge companies and industries leading this catastrophic pillaging of our Mother Earth are the most visible culprits. Looking at global warming and all the statistics that go with it can be quite overwhelming.

Thinking that my ‘little’ contribution to reduce my carbon-footprint and aid in addressing global warming does not make much of a difference is...well... an illusion to put it lightly. With a world population of close to 6.93 billion, assuming only 1 billion are ‘normal’ people like you and me, thinking the same...it all adds up. Get the picture?

How can I give? You can make a difference in a positive way. Starting with small steps.  The following tips will help you to create a healthier and cleaner environment in and around your home. Less poisons to inhale, organic food on your table, and proudly tipping the scales in your little spot in favor of Mother Nature. Implementing these tips will allow you to give back to the environment that so freely gives of her resources.

Turn it off - Turn off all electrical items such as lights, Hi-Fi, geysers, computers, televisions, microwaves and other power consuming appliances/devices. Energy-saving light bulbs/appliances (CFL bulbs), and rechargeable batteries not only uses less electricity, but also saves you money.

The heat is on Reduce the temperature of central heating/water heaters slightly by 1 or 2 degrees. Timer settings also work well.

Loads of fun - Doing half loads are a waste of fun, sorry, electricity. Load up your washing machine, tumble dryer or dish washer once you have a full load. This way you reduce the water and power bill.

Shop ‘till you drop’ - Once a week will do. Plan your shopping in advance so as to reduce your trips to the grocery store. Even better, walk when you can. It saves fuel, and tightens those muscles in the rear of your jeans.

Sunshine in my skirts - Whenever possible, hang your washing out to dry in the sun. Don’t you just love the smell of sun in your clothes?

Insulate Use good insulation for your hot water tank, house walls and loft. This will maintain temperature for a longer period and will save on heat loss.

Purchase recycled paper - Producing recycled paper takes less energy than new paper - think of all the trees you are saving.

Little back garden - If you have the means to grow your own fruit and vegetables, try it. It’s a wonderful way to connect with the earth, and the pleasure one derives from eating your own grown goodies is very satisfying. You eat organic, you save on packaging, and the peels and pips can be worked back into a compost heap again, truly a re-cycle cycle with benefits. Pots and containers are useful and can be moved to your next home, easily.

Support the Locals - If you can’t grow your own, at least buy locally grown products. This reduces your carbon footprint by minimizing the amount of travel the food takes to get to your plate. Support your local farmers and traders.

Worm a farm - This is a great way to get the kids involved. Worm-farms are very popular, and the benefits are great. Your vegetable and fruit waste feed the worms, and they churn out beautiful compost and ‘worm-juice’.

Share your knowledge - There is a lot of information on websites on how to reduce your carbon footprint. Share this knowledge with your family and friends. They will be grateful for the money saving tips, even if the positive effects they are making on the planet hadn’t entered their minds!
2011 Moira G Gallaga ©

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