Green living solutions are becoming more affordable whether it is organic food or more efficient home lighting. You might not all be able to afford solar panels on your roofs, or might not have the weather for it either! But there are some small steps you can take to cut down on your electricity usage and waste, which will benefit the environment in the long run.
Sadly, this is probably the most expensive option available on this list, but if it can be achieved, it will do wonders for the environment. Some may argue against the rare earth needed to make solar energy work, but it does cut down on the amount of fossil fuels required to make the electricity and move it to your home. New Tesla batteries will soon make it easier for households to store solar power for rainy days.
Change Your Thermostat Temperature
Even changing your thermostat up by 3 degrees in summer and down by 3 degrees in winter can seriously cut back on electricity usage and save money. Aim for a winter temperature of around 68F and a summer temperature of 78F. See what is comfortable with you and what else you can manage by cooling/warming the house using shades, curtains and natural sunlight.
Switch to Green Lighting
No, not the color of the light bulb, but environmentally friendly lighting. Governments worldwide have been pushing for greener home lighting. This first saw incandescent bulbs banned and may soon see halogen bulbs banned too. Over the same period of time, LED light bulbs have risen to be the market leader in energy efficient lighting solutions. They achieve this through a combination of extreme energy efficiency and longevity. Homes converting to LEDs will save hundreds of dollars a year in electricity bills.
Air conditioning inefficiency wastes a lot of electricity every year. While here in Canada, it’s not exactly well known for hot weather, aircon both heats and cools a house depending on the temperature (as noted above). To maximize their efficiency and reduce bills, keep air vents open at all times, even in winter, clean them often, and replace filters regularly.
Recycle and Compost
Your home is not just about electricity. Environmental impact is measured by the items you use, clothes you buy, and mostly by the food you eat. A lot of these products can be recycled when you finish using them, either to be broken down into compost for growing plants or turned into new materials. The more that is recycled, the less new materials have to be created or excavated. Cutting down on toxic materials and turning to biodegradable or recyclable materials will reduce your footprint significantly.
You can offset your home’s impact in the garden. As well as composting leftover food waste, grow plants, trees and vegetables. The main impact of growing plants and trees is encouraging wildlife to flourish and most importantly of all right now, getting bees back. Growing your own vegetables cuts down on the transportation and fossil fuel cost of moving food grown elsewhere to your location.