SAVE THE EARTH Easy Things You Can Do 1. Whenever possible, car pool, ride the bus, walk or bike. 2. Recycle aluminum and bimetal cans, glass, newspapers, corrugated cardboard and other materials collected by your local recycler. Store used household batteries until your next household hazardous waste program or battery recycling program is announced. 3. Leave short grass clippings on the lawn to decompose or use as mulch on your garden beds. Compost other yard and garden wastes. 4. Conserve water: install low-flow devices in faucets and shower heads. Install a temporary shut-off valve on your shower. Turn off water when you brush your teeth, wash or shave. 5. Conserve energy: use cold water to wash, hang clothes out to dry and turn off lights not being used. Install a programmable thermostat; lower your thermostat in winter (raise in summer if you have air conditioning), at night, or when no one is home. Turn down your hot-water heater, and have your furnace inspected and cleaned. 6. Keep your car tires properly inflated and your motor tuned. Remove unnecessary weight from your trunk. 7. Write to companies that send you unwanted junk mail and ask them to stop. To keep your name off most new mailing lists, write to the Direct Marketing Association, 6 E. 43rd St., New York, NY 10017 (each year, 100 million trees are used to produce junk mail, source: www.epa.state.oh.us/opp/consumer/junkmail.html) 8. Buy products with recyclable (or recycled) packaging, minimal packaging, or no packaging (like fresh foods). 9. Reuse egg carton, plastic and glass containers. When shopping, don’t accept a bag if you don’t really need it; bring your own bags for grocery shopping. 10. To save on transportation and packaging, grow as much of your own food as you can. Even a window box or kitchen herb garden helps. 11. Eat organic (www.greenpeople.org lists natural and health food stores by state or visit http://www.thegreenguide.org ) or even better… 12. Eat local, supporting local, organic agriculture – as opposed to faraway farms – cut down on food transport that’s tough on the environment. 13. Use a reusable lunch bag and carry a reusable Nalgene-type bottle for water instead of buying throwaway water bottles. Over 2.5 million plastic water bottles are discarded per hour by Americans. 14. Use a travel mug at the coffee shop. 15. Limit the use of pesticides and chemicals on your lawn, which have been linked to infertility, low birth weight and cancer in adults. Source: www.grinningplanet.com 16. Invest in green energy (e.g. solar, wind, hydro-electric power). 17. Cut down on air travel (a source of CO2 emissions) If you must travel by air, contribute to www.carbonfund.org 18. Become a vegetarian; it takes much more land to raise cattle than it does to grow grain or veggies. 19. Use sponges instead of paper towels for kitchen messes, cloth napkins instead of paper ones and handkerchiefs instead of tissue (too many virgin forests are being depleted to make paper). 20. Seal window and door leaks, research info on energy audits for your home and buy green power, http://www.pca.state.mn.us/oea/energy/greenpower.cfm 21. Recycle or donate your old computers, cell phones, etc., instead of tossing them (http://www.supremerecycling.com/ or http://www.pca.state.mn.us/oea/plugin/recyclers-household.cfm) 22. Unplugging appliances and even cell phone chargers when not in use will save electricity (between 15-20 % of your electric bill) 23. Invest Green – put your money where your heart is, google socially responsible investing or look up: http://www.socialinvest.org/ or other websites. 24. Pay your bills online to reduce paper versions, recycle all paper office waste. 25. Use rechargeable batteries (batteries contain toxins that are harmful to the environment and can get into the water supply as they decompose). 26. Buy used clothes, books, magazines, furniture, etc. 27. Think before you open: don’t hold that fridge or freezer door open while pondering what to eat and clean out and turn off your fridge when taking long trips. 28. “If it’s yellow, let it mellow; if it’s brown, flush it down”, place note by each toilet. 29. Use digital cameras to reduce chemicals used to develop film, while simultaneously deleting those embarrassing pictures. 30. Support Green companies and businesses, http://coopamerica.org/greenbusiness/ 31. Clean your furnace and air conditioner filters regularly to cut down on energy use and decrease indoor air pollution. 32. Consider purchasing a fuel efficient car or vehicle if you must drive, like a hybrid or vespa. 33. Fish lead free; lead is toxic and found in most fishing jigs and sinkers and is harmful to water life and surrounding areas. 34. Close fireplace and wood stove dampers when not in use. 35. Use fans instead of the air conditioner in warm weather. 36. If every household in the U.S. replaced just ONE incandescent light bulb with an energy efficient compact fluorescent light bulb (CFL), it would eliminate the equivalent of the emissions created by one million cars. And that's only one bulb per household! Most homes have 15-30 bulbs.