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Give me some ideas to GO GREEN!!

Hello everyone,

I recently took a class called Sustainable Solutions in school and I learned a lot about the importance of going green. Ever since then I been trying to change things around the house.

Some stuff I have changed are the water faucets, I changed them with WaterSense faucets and I am hoping my next water bill will be lower. I also bought a new energy star refrigerator from a free classified ads website and it's really amazing.

I am looking for some more ideas to go green, if there is something you changed about your house or you got an idea, please post it.

Thank you,

John

Re: Give me some ideas to GO GREEN!!

  • Here are a few things we do.  We got a conversion kit for our toilet so we can do half flushes and full flushes as needed. We have a low flow showerhead.  We use fluoresent light bulbs and LEDs.  I make our detergents for the dishwasher and washing machine, and use a lot less hazardous cleaning products in general.  I hang the laundry on the line to dry.  We use a programable thermostat and keep things a little chilly in the winter.  I try to cook from scratch as much as possible and eat less meat.  We have a compost pile and a garden.  We don't water the lawn and use a rain barrel system.  We recycle.  I've adjusted my driving for maximum gas mileage.  I also try to be as conscious about our overall consumerism and spending in general because I believe the issues are related, say as simple as if I spend less on A then I can spend more on an ecoconscious item B that is usually more expensive than a non-ecoconscious variation of B.  Some money saving things we do is credit card reward programs, gas reward program through our local supermarket, coupons for everything from food to sneakers, hitting yard sales and thrift stores, using Craigslist, Groupon, and Living Social.  We try to avoid paying retail costs for as many items as possible by paying close attention to sales.
  • image another KT:
    Here are a few things we do.  We got a conversion kit for our toilet so we can do half flushes and full flushes as needed. We have a low flow showerhead.  We use fluoresent light bulbs and LEDs.  I make our detergents for the dishwasher and washing machine, and use a lot less hazardous cleaning products in general.  I hang the laundry on the line to dry.  We use a programable thermostat and keep things a little chilly in the winter.  I try to cook from scratch as much as possible and eat less meat.  We have a compost pile and a garden.  We don't water the lawn and use a rain barrel system.  We recycle.  I've adjusted my driving for maximum gas mileage.  I also try to be as conscious about our overall consumerism and spending in general because I believe the issues are related, say as simple as if I spend less on A then I can spend more on an ecoconscious item B that is usually more expensive than a non-ecoconscious variation of B.  Some money saving things we do is credit card reward programs, gas reward program through our local supermarket, coupons for everything from food to sneakers, hitting yard sales and thrift stores, using Craigslist, Groupon, and Living Social.  We try to avoid paying retail costs for as many items as possible by paying close attention to sales.

     

    Very Inspiring :) 

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  • We bought the nest thermostat for our new house (they didnt have a programmable one), and we LOVE it. You can track it's energy usage, and it has different options to make your house even more energy efficient.  You can also control it from your phone, so like for us, we keep the house fairly cold in the winter when we're not home....and now we can turn up the heat just before we leave the office at the end of the day!

     

    Other ideas:  we've been making our own iced tea and cooking more frugally using fresher in-season ingredients.  When we do cook, we make enough for leftovers so that we don't have to use the oven/stove EVERY night. We also crack the oven open when we're done cooking to heat the kitchen a little =)

     We tried filling a water bottle and putting it in the toilet tank to reduce water waste, but our toilets didn't really like that solution. they're pretty old and finicky to begin with.

    We keep an extra recycling bin upstairs in the office to promote more recycling of paper items.

    In the spring, we're planning to plant a vegetable and herb garden, and perhaps start a rain barrel to water the garden. Down the line, we are also hoping to investigate solar panels...even just small ones might help us out =)

  • One's diet can have a huge impact on the environment. I've been vegetarian for a few years now, leaning vegan, and H doesn't eat much meat. We recycle, of course, and try to reuse stuff as much as possible (I wash out ziplock bags and wear the same clothes forever!). We live in a location where we can walk to the grocery store, bank, coffee shop, etc., and I take the bus to the university. H walks or rides his bike to work. We like to shop at thrift stores and neither of us own smart phones yet, because of the unethically mined minerals that are used in them. My next phone will probably be second-hand. I think just buying less is a really important step in living sustainably. 
  • you can also try replacing paper towels with unpaper towels.  Use cloth naptkins.  Some people even use cloth tp.  If you plan on having children you can also cloth diaper.  Its so much better for the environment and for baby.
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  • Going green means loving nature. Personally, I am starting to educate and discipline myself of a good habit to diminish  environmental problems because I believe that this little thing could contribute for a big help. Mother Earth is crying because she is slowly dying of our bad behavior. Let us think of our future children. Let us give them a greener world, which is safer to live with. Let's save Mother Earth!

  • You can add in LED and CFL lights. That will save a lot of electricity. If you have good outdoors in your house like a garden, balcony or terrace then spend more free time there. This way you will not end up watching tv, or using up your home electricity. You can always chill there with family and friends and save on to a lot of electricity and energy indoors. Trust me, this makes a big difference.
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  • The most efficient way to conserve energy is by going vegan, organic, non-GMO. 

    I took a few classes in college as well, which made me research more and more, which led me from being a meat-eater to straight vegan.

     The United Nations came out in 2006 stating that animal agriculture is a larger producer of green house gas emissions than ALL modes of transportation COMBINED.  You're doing more harm eating meat every other night of the week than driving to work every day. 

    Thrive Foods by Brendan Brazier is a great read to help understand more in depth  the consequences of our food choices. He talks a lot about the different ways to conserve energy and how different food choices help/hurt more than others. 

  • image lindsaytan06:

    Going green means loving nature. Personally, I am starting to educate and discipline myself of a good habit to diminish  environmental problems because I believe that this little thing could contribute for a big help. Mother Earth is crying because she is slowly dying of our bad behavior. Let us think of our future children. Let us give them a greener world, which is safer to live with. Let's save Mother Earth!

     

    Umm.. Going green means loving ourSELVES.

    Earth is going to be here looong after we're dead and gone. Earth can survive green house gases, ruined soils, and extreme weather. WE CAN'T. "Mother Earth" doesn't need any saving. I'm pretty sure she's sitting there laughing at us for destroying ourselves. 

  • Looks like you've got some good advice here, and you are off to a good start. I was in the same boat a few years back when I considering building a new home. I consulted with this mn home builder before we made any decisions, we wanted the home to be as green as possible and have a great value for when we are ready to resell. They were really helpful in making small/ inexpensive suggestions, much like the ones people have already shared. I'd read some blogs by professional green house builders because they have the best advice as they do things to improve green living everyday! :)
  • You can use home made cleaning products like vinegar, lemon, pumice stone, baking soda, etc instead of acids or other synthetic products so that the gases emitted from them may not be fatal for the living beings.
    Outdoor Patio Furniture
  • I've bought linen napkins to replace paper ones. We also use dish cloths and cleaning rags instead of paper towels. I've even bought small reusable face pads on Etsy that I use with toner instead of cotton balls. 

    http://www.etsy.com/search?q=reusable face pads&view_type=gallery&ship_to=XX

    I mentioned cloth toilet paper to my husband but he was having none of it, lol.

    I've been saving old scraps of vegetables in the freezer to use to make my own vegetable stock once a week for soups and to add to dishes.  

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  • I'm trying to use more kitchen towels instead of paper towels, maybe one day I can really phase into only using linen towels.

    I don't use wrapping paper for gifts, just paper from the brown grocery bags. Sometimes I'll decorate it with a pattern or something.

    Using reusable shopping and grocery bags is also good...my bags are all over the place though and lately I forget to bring them along. Always best to carry one of the bags rolled up in your purse for whenever you do some impulse shopping. That way you won't need plastic.

    When you go to the ATM, have the receipt sent to your email or bank inbox instead of printing it.

    Use things like fabric from old shirts and scrap paper to make decorations for the home and for holidays...

     

     

    rajrangjaipur
  • That's great!  We've really been trying to make changes around our house, too Just take it one step at a time :)

    We use reusable grocery bags, but also reusable produce bags.  We also bring our own bags to shop the bulk section (oats, dried fruit, nuts, etc.)

    We try to buy mostly organic and non-GMO when we can.  Especially for the "dirty dozen"

    We have greatly reduced packaged food, which is better for you, and creates less waste in the environment

     Make your own cleaning products--vinegar, baking soda and castile soap have tons of cleaning uses around the house. A lot of the conventional cleaners have pretty nasty chemicals in them, that are unnecessary in a regular household.

    Microfiber or cotton cloths instead of paper towels for cleaning (although, I admit, we do use paper towels if the cat throws up. eww.) Cloth napkins.  Handkerchiefs.

    Reduce single-use plastic. Bring your own silverware. Get a reusable glass straw, or ask for no straw when you go out.

    Hope that helps!

     

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    rajrangjaipur
  • cloth pads or a diva cup or similar to avoid throwing away period related trash. 

    I use the party in my pants brand of cloth pads. they are comfy and easily washable but a little pricy to start.  

    ~Jenny~
  • Go Green with your Electronics, Landscaping, Car, Appliances, Cleaning Supplies
  • One way I have gone green is by using menstrual cups. I have one called the Diva Cup. When I first heard about it I was sketched out but I've been using it for about a year and it is so awesome I just can't even believe it. I had a super heavy flow (sorry if TMI) so I would go through almost an entire box of tampons a period/panty liners/overnight pads. I started thinking about not only the cost adding up every month but the resources that go into producing all of those paper products that I just threw away. Not only the resources for the product themselves but then packaging it, shipping it in shrink wrap and larger boxes, etc. I also started looking into all the chemicals that are used in tampons and how it relates to TSS. Just FYI the Diva Cup is made out of medical grade silicon with no use of dyes or perfumes. You can leave it in for up to 12 hours so no more running to the bathroom every 2 hours to change. My period has actually gone from 7 days to 4 days, not sure why, Im thinking that maybe the chemicals were throwing my system off or something? I've had a 7 day period since I was 12.
  • I know it's not as good as having reusable bags, but we DO reuse the plastic bags that we get from the grocery stores, for everything from cat litter (eww) to trashbags for the cars and bathroom. I try to not buy items in bulky packaging. Also, you may not think about it, but the WAY you throw away stuff matters, too. Break down cardboard boxes (the ones you can't recycle), take the lids off of bottles (again, ones you don't recycle). These two things help the trash compress better. We get a community newspaper with our mail, and I always save it for breakable's padding or glass cleaning.

    As far as water usage, I don't shower everyday, but instead every other day (unless I'm unnormally dirty or on my period). I take shortish showers, usually 15 minutes absolutely tops. I try not to blow dry my hair or take too hot of a shower (both of which are beneficial for me AND my budget). I don't have a dishwasher, but I don't wash dishes until I have a full sink.. also don't do laundry unless I have a full load, and only use hot water on bedding. 

    I want to do more, just haven't sat down and done it yet!

  • Also, kind of applies to Money Matters, too.. but I'm a crazy woman about our electricity usage. I'm known for sitting in the dark :). I turn off lights all the time, and unplug what we don't use. I also turn off the HVAC unit when we're not there, or if the weather is even remotely nice (by which I mean 50 degrees to 75 degrees in TN). I leave the fans on in the house all the time to help circulate air, and turn them on low when I open the windows. I dropped our bill $70 from one month to the next implimenting all these ideas :)
  • My major in University was Environment 
    I found that one of my best first decisions to making a greener environment at home was to actually create a little garden in the backyard. It made me value local grown food, organic methods, and sustainability on a more personal level. Plus its proven that creating a garden space is awesome for mental health!
  • rajrangjaipurrajrangjaipur
    10 Comments Name Dropper
    member
    edited March 2016
    I really liked your idea of going green. It's a good initiative. You can go green by using reusable things like reusable bags and organic things which will help in creative a green environment. Try to go green with electronics, cleaning & landscaping also. Let's save our earth together.
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