Many reports today are confirming the theory that human behavior lies at the bottom of climate change. Most recently, an article has been published by the United States National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to confirm that we are directly contributing to the severe atmospheric changes we have been experiencing in recent years, placing our future under threat.
The following measures to actively introduce sustainable measures to our homes can go a long way towards reversing negative atmospheric trends and preserving the earth for future generations.
Conduct an Energy Audit
An energy audit looks at the performance of all the energy systems at your home including heating, air conditioning, ventilation, and insulation and assesses this alongside other information such as the age and plan for your building. It can also include an assessment of your daily habits and will help you to minimize consumption.
Turn Off Appliances
Turning off the heat or air conditioner and other appliances when you are not at home can help to reduce energy consumption.
Scheduling regular heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) maintenance to ensure the efficiency of these systems is another very important measure that can be considered.
Switch Your Light Bulbs
Image via Flickr by frankieleon
Replace incandescent light bulbs with compact fluorescent light and LED bulbs. These bulbs last longer and burn less energy. Keep light bulbs switched off during the day and when you are away from home for extended periods.
Take Shorter Showers
Opting to use the shower instead of a bath, taking shorter showers, and turning taps off when they are not in use are simple and effective ways to conserve water around the home. Installing low-flow pipes, repairing leaking taps, and taking shorter showers can also help.
Plant a Garden
Starting with just one window box, the effort to grow your own vegetables can contribute to protecting the environment and reducing your intake of toxic chemicals by preparing and consuming organic foods. Drought-tolerant organic plants are also great to introduce to your home. They contribute to cleaner air and do not need to consume as much water. Collect rainwater to water your plants.
Effective outdoor landscaping is another very effective way to contribute to energy efficiency while adding to the overall aesthetics of your home. Carefully positioned trees and shrubs can help to maximize shade during the summer and act as a windbreak for cold autumn and winter winds, reducing a household’s overall energy costs.
Add another waste container to collect and recycle plastics, tin, aluminum, and paper. This very simple effort to recycle material will help to divert tons of material being sent to landfills and save energy resources.
These are just a few measures to become energy efficient that can be introduced to your home. There are many others including replacing paper napkins with cloth napkins, eating less meat, composting, and repurposing items at home. Paying close attention to our behavior and making responsible decisions to reduce our energy consumption will go a long way towards going green at home.