Living Green, Saving Green
You know that doing your part to protect the environment is the right thing to do. But did you also know that it pays off in more ways than one? Going green can save some of the other kind of green that you can use for other things. We've compiled the following brief list of environmentally friendly things you can easily do that will save you some money. You’ll see that they make a lot of dollars and cents:
- Switch to compact fluorescent light bulbs. Even changing just the five most frequently-used bulbs in your house can save you $100 or more per year. Doing so will take you all of about two minutes.
- Install low-flow shower heads or place a water-displacement bag in your toilet tank to cut down on water waste.
- Set your thermostat to 78° or higher in the summer and 62° or lower in the winter to save $100 or more on your energy bill each year.
- Drive less – and save money that otherwise would have gone straight into your tank – by walking, biking or taking the bus whenever possible. Initiate a carpool for trips to and from work, school or other activities.
- Utilize power strips and cut down on “vampire electricity,” which is the electricity used while appliances and electronics are plugged into an outlet, but not in use. By flipping the “off” switch on a power strip, you’ll quickly put a stop to this.
- Incorporate native plants into your yard. They’re more adapted to local soil and climate and will thrive with minimal care – meaning less water, fertilizer and pesticides used for maintenance.
- Let your grass grow. Most varieties fare best at two and a half inches tall, absorbing more sunlight and creating thicker turf, meaning less water needed for your lawn.
- Do full loads of laundry and dishes as a way to save gallons of wasted water every week, and use cold water whenever possible.
The environment is a lot like your your budget; it's often the little things that accumulate that have the greatest effect. Taking steps like these can help stretch your household finances, while helping to preserve the environment.