Choosing green energy is an important way to protect your health while reducing your contribution to global warming. Green energy is electricity from renewable sources - sun, wind, water, biomass and geothermal. These renewable sources emit little pollution and, unlike nuclear production, leave no radioactive waste.
Some Things You Can Do
- Consider having a comprehensive audit done on your home. Make a plan of action.
- Consider a hybrid or alternative-fuel vehicle when it's time to buy a new car.
- Consider installing other energy sources such as solar panels, wind, or water power.
- Recycle and choose recycled products whenever possible.
- Rideshare or use public transportation whenever possible.
- Turn off lights when leaving a room.
- Use energy-efficient lighting such as indoor compact fluorescent lights, motion sensors and solar lights outdoors.
Water Usage & Plumbing
- Don't waste water, hot or cold, inside or outside your home.
- Install water-efficient faucet heads in your kitchen and bathroom sinks.
- Install water-saving 2.5-gallon-per-minute showerheads.
- Insulate the first three feet of hot and cold inlet water pipes.
- Insulate hot-water pipes in unheated basements or crawlspaces.
- Repair leaky faucets and toilets (5% of water "use" is leakage)
- Turn down water heater thermostats to 120 degrees Fahrenheit.
Appliance Selection & Use
- Air-dry your clothes.
- Buy energy-efficient appliances. Energy Star products power down when not in use.
- Clean your refrigerator's condenser coils once a year.
- Use energy-saving settings on:
- Clothes dryers
- Washing machines
Home Heating & Cooling
- Check insulation in the attic, basement and walls. Note the age and condition of heating and cooling equipment, appliances, windows and water heaters.
- Clean or change the air filter on your warm-air heating system during winter, and on air conditioning units in the summer.
- Close drapes (and windows) during sunny summer days and after sunset in the winter.
- Close heating vents in unused rooms.
- Have heating and cooling systems tuned up every year or two.
- In the attic and basement, plug the air leaks and replace and re-putty broken window panes.
- In summer, shade sunny windows or add films that control solar gain.
- Install programmable thermostats.
- Seal and insulate warm-air heating (or cooling) ducts.
- Set thermostats to 68°F in winter when you're home, and down to 55°F when you go to bed or when you're away.
- Wrap water heaters with insulating jackets.