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7 Renewable Technologies Changing Our World

renewable technologies changing the world

As the world looks for ways to reduce its reliance on fossil fuels and combat climate change, renewable energy technologies are coming to the fore. Here are seven that could have a significant impact in the years to come.


Solar power

renewable energy technologies

Solar power is one of the most promising renewable energy technologies. It is emission-free and versatile and can generate electricity, heat water, and even power vehicles.

As countries look for ways to reduce reliance on fossil fuels, solar power is becoming increasingly important. In many parts of the world, solar panels are now being used to generate a significant amount of electricity.

According to the International Energy Agency, the global installed capacity of solar photovoltaics (PV) reached almost 620 gigawatts (GW) in 2019, up from just over 300 GW just five years earlier. And there’s still huge growth potential – the IEA estimates that solar could provide more than 27% of global electricity by 2050.

Indeed, in some cases, solar power is now the cheapest form of energy available.

As solar technology improves and prices fall, solar will likely play an even bigger role in powering the world in the future.


Wind energy

Wind power is another renewable energy source that’s been growing rapidly in recent years.

According to the IEA, the global installed capacity of wind turbines reached almost 607 GW in 2019, up from just over 487 GW in 2014. And like solar, there’s still a lot of room for growth – the agency estimates that wind could provide more than 19% of global electricity by 2050.

Countries are turning to wind energy to power their homes and businesses. There are now more than 1,000 operating wind farms in 100 countries, with a total capacity of nearly 500,000 megawatts. That’s enough to power more than 130 million homes!

In the United States, wind energy is one of the fastest-growing sources of electricity. According to the American Wind Energy Association(AWEA), wind power capacity in the US has increased by more than 25% in the past five years.

What’s driving this growth? For one thing, wind energy is becoming increasingly cost-competitive with other forms of generation, such as natural gas and coal.

In addition, wind turbines are now being built taller and with larger blades, making them more efficient at capturing the wind’s energy.

As a result of these improvements, the cost of wind energy has fallen by 90% since the 1980s. With costs continuing to decline, wind will likely play an even bigger role in meeting global energy needs in the years ahead.



renewable energy technologies: hydropower

Hydropower is a form of renewable energy that uses water to generate electricity. It’s not only clean and environmentally friendly, but it’s also incredibly efficient. In fact, hydropower currently supplies around 16% of the world’s electricity.

And it’s not just large countries that are investing in hydropower.

Smaller countries are starting to see the benefits as well.

In Lesotho, for example, a new hydropower plant was recently built to provide electricity for the country’s capital city, Maseru. The plant cost around $ US320 million to build but should save Lesotho millions of dollars each year in fuel costs.

Hydro energy is one of the oldest forms of renewable energy, and it still provides a significant amount of power around the world. According to the IEA, hydropower generated 3.6% of global electricity in 2018, and it’s expected to continue playing a role in the energy mix in the years to come.

There are many reasons why hydropower is such a popular source of energy. For one, it is a very efficient way to generate electricity. Hydropower plants can have operating expenses as low as 1% of the cost of conventional power plants.

Moreover, hydropower is a clean energy source that does not produce greenhouse gases or other pollutants.

The technology behind hydropower is also constantly evolving, making it an even more attractive option for the future.

One of the latest developments in hydropower is floating solar farms. These solar farms are built on reservoirs and use the water to cool the panels, resulting in more efficient electricity production.


Wave and tidal energy

Wave and tidal power are two forms of renewable energy derived from the natural movement of water. Wave energy is created by the force of waves crashing against the shore, while tidal power is generated by the rise and fall of tides.

People have used both forms of energy for centuries to power mills and pumps, but they are only now being developed as a source of electricity.

The world’s first wave farm was completed in Scotland in 2000, and since then, several other plants have been built around the world. One of the largest wave farm currently in operation is the Simec Atlantic Array, which can generate enough electricity to power over 20,000 homes.

In 2018, it was announced that the world’s first floating wind farm had been completed off the coast of Scotland. The farm consists of five turbines tethered to the seabed and can generate enough electricity to power nearly 20,000 homes.

Tidal power plants have also been built in several countries, including Canada, China, France, South Korea, and the United Kingdom. The Seagreen 1 tidal power plant in Scotland is currently under construction and is expected to be operational in 2025. When completed, it will be one of the world’s largest.

According to the IEA, wave and tidal could provide up to 10% of global electricity by 2050.


Geothermal power

geothermal power plant

Geothermal power is a renewable energy that harnesses the Earth’s internal heat to generate electricity. Unlike fossil fuels, which produce emissions that can contribute to climate change, geothermal power is a clean and sustainable energy source.

In addition, geothermal power plants can provide a steady and reliable source of electricity, even when the sun isn’t shining, or the wind isn’t blowing. As a result, geothermal power plays an increasingly important role in our transition to a low-carbon economy.

According to the International Geothermal Association, more than 26 countries currently operate geothermal power plants. The same organization estimates geothermal power plants produce around 3.5 gigawatts of electricity, enough to power 3 million homes.

The United States is the world’s leading producer of geothermal electricity, followed by the Philippines and Indonesia. Kenya is also a major player in the geothermal space, with plans to increase its output from 200 megawatts to 1 gigawatts by 2030.

Some of the latest developments in geothermal power include the world’s largest geothermal power plant in Turkey and a new plant in Kenya that is set to provide power to more than 1 million people. With advances in technology and increasing investment, it is clear that geothermal power is poised to play a significant role in our future energy mix.



Biomass is a renewable energy source that can take many forms, including wood, crop waste, and Municipal Solid Waste (MSW). It can be used to generate electricity, heat, or transportation fuels.

According to the IEA, biomass currently accounts for around 10% of the global primary energy supply, and it is expected to play a significant role in the energy mix in the years to come.

This increase is mainly due to the growing use of biomass for power generation. In 2017, biomass provided around 4% of global electricity, up from 2% in 2010. The majority of biomass power plants are located in Europe and Asia.

The United States is also a major biomass power producer, with around 100 plants in operation. Biomass power faces several challenges, including high costs and environmental concerns.

However, the latest technologies are helping to overcome these challenges and make biomass a more viable option for the future.


Nuclear power

nuclear power plant

Nuclear power is a controversial renewable energy source, but it cannot be ignored. According to the World Nuclear Association, it currently provides around 11% of global electricity, and it is expected to play a significant role in the energy mix in the years to come.

Nuclear energy uses sunlight to split atoms and generate heat. This heat is then used to generate electricity through a process called nuclear fission.

Currently, more than 442 nuclear power plants are operating in 30 countries worldwide, with a total capacity of almost 400,000 megawatts. In addition, there are another 54 plants under construction in 15 countries.

The use of nuclear power has grown significantly over the past few decades. In 1970, nuclear power accounted for less than 1% of the world’s electricity production, and today supplies about 11% of the world’s electricity.

There are several reasons why nuclear power is growing in popularity. For one, it produces no greenhouse gas emissions, making it an attractive option for combating climate change. In addition, it is a very efficient form of energy production, with a typical plant generating about two to three times more electricity than a coal-fired plant of the same size.

Finally, nuclear plants have a small footprint and can be located almost anywhere.

Despite its benefits, nuclear power does have some drawbacks. The most notable of these is the risk of a nuclear accident. Although the chances of this happening are extremely low, the potential consequences are very catastrophic.



These are just a few of the renewable energy technologies that have the potential to change our world.

As we continue to research and develop these technologies, they will become more efficient and less expensive, making them more viable options for both large-scale power generation and small-scale home energy production.

How to Dispose of Old Tires in Environmentally Friendly Ways

dispose of old tyres in environmentally friendly ways

The United States generates about 290 million scrap tires annually. If not managed properly, old tires create many health and environmental problems. They can serve as breeding grounds for mosquitos and other disease-carrying insects.

Tires also act as fuel for fires. When old tires are burned, they release several harmful chemicals. These include carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, and several other toxins. These compounds lead to air pollution and are particularly detrimental to people with respiratory problems.

However, the tire problem isn’t limited to air pollution. Tires can also leach chemicals into the ground as they break down. Some of these toxic chemicals seep into the ground and waterways contaminating groundwater and soil and creating problems for plants and animals.

Fortunately, there are numerous sustainable ways of disposing of old tires. We’ll be exploring some of the options today, along with what you can do right now with the old tires in your garage or backyard.

Let’s jump right in.


Recycling tires

recycling old tires

Tire recycling is one of the most sustainable ways to dispose of old tires. It helps reduce pollution, conserve resources, and create new products.

When tires are recycled, they are first cleaned and shredded. The shredded tire pieces are then used in a variety of applications, including:

  • Asphalt for roads
  • Playground surfaces
  • Landscaping mulch
  • Tire-derived fuel

Through tire recycling, unwanted and end-of-life tires are reused or retreaded differently.

Recycled rubber from the old tires, for instance, is used to make crumb rubber, a form of granulated rubber used in playground surfaces, landscaping, and underlayment for synthetic turf fields.

However, new research shows that smaller crumb rubber may contain potentially hazardous substances.

Alternatively, tires can be chipped and used as fuel in cement kilns, paper mills, or power plants. Whole tires can also be used in civil engineering projects, such as constructing barriers or breakwaters.

In addition, research is ongoing into new ways to recycle tires, such as using them to create asphalt.


The process

Today, most tires are made from natural rubber, steel, synthetic polymers, and textiles such as polyester, nylon, and rayon.

In essence, we can break down old tires and extract some materials. The primary scrap materials derived from tires include:

  • Tire-derived fuel (36.8%) – According to the EPA, tires produce the same energy as oil and 25% more than coal. However, the process of extracting that fuel remains in contention.)
  • Ground rubber
  • Small rubber crumbs are used in civil engineering projects.

Others include steel, fiber, and nylon. The materials are extracted, cleaned, and sold for remanufacturing or use in other areas.


Regulation on disposing of old tires

Despite recycling efforts and stringent regulation, 14.3% of old tires still ends up in landfills, according to the United States Tire Manufacturers Association.

It’s worth noting that most landfills in the U.S. do not accept old tires. In fact, 39 states explicitly prohibit whole tires from landfills, while 13 states do not even allow shredded tires in such facilities.


Your old tire recycling options

  • Call your local recycling service to enquire about their tire recycling programs. Some local governments also offer bulk tire trash collection.
  • Alternatively, talk to your auto vendor or shop for old tire recycling options. Some charge a small disposal fee.

Several tire manufacturers also offer free recycling programs. Some of these include:


Upcycling old tires

Tires are sturdy and durable, which makes them excellent upcycling materials. Here are a few creative and environmentally friendly ways to upcycle your old tires:

1. Using them as planters

using old tires as planters

Have you ever wondered what to do with all those old tires lying around? Rubber tires can last for years, but eventually, they tire out and need to be replaced.

Rather than simply throwing them away, consider upcycling them into planters! This is a great way to reduce waste, but it’s also an Eco-friendly way to add some unique style to your garden.

Tires make excellent planters because they’re durable, lightweight, and easy to move around. They can also be painted or decorated to add a personal touch. Plus, they’re the perfect size for small plants and succulents.

If you’re looking for a creative way to recycle old tires, consider using them as planters. You’ll be doing your part for the environment and adding some personality to your garden simultaneously!


2. Turn them into art and furniture.

tire furniture

Every year, millions of tires are sent to landfills, where they sit and release harmful chemicals into the environment. But what if there was a way to recycle old tires and turn them into something beautiful?

That’s where tire art and furniture comes in.

Tire art is a form of upcycling, which takes tire waste materials and turns them into new products. Old tires can be made into everything from benches and planters to sculptures and chandeliers.

Not only is tire art environmentally friendly, but it also helps beautify our world.

Here’s a quick DIY Ottoman made from an old tire and other readily available materials:


3. Turn them into sustainable construction materials

One interesting way to recycle old tires is to use them as construction materials. For example, “Earthships” are homes built partially or entirely from recycled materials, including tires.

The tires are filled with earth and then stacked to create walls. Earthships are designed to be sustainable and Eco-friendly, and they often have features such as solar panels and rainwater collection systems.

While they may not be suitable for everyone, Earthships offer a creative and environmentally-friendly solution for those looking for alternative traditional construction methods.

Watch how old tires are used to construct Earth-ships:



Tires present a challenging problem for the environment. They are made from fossil fuel derivatives and other synthetic polymers that take time to break down. However, they can be easily recycled, up-cycled or broken down for materials. Get a little creative with your worn out tires.

Image: Flickr

What do you do with your old, worn out or unwanted tires? Please leave a comment below.

5 Organic Gardening Problems and How to Fix Them

Organic Gardening Problems

Growing healthy fruits and vegetables without using chemicals in a natural approach protects both the consumer and the environment.

This is not difficult to achieve on a small scale, where individual plants can receive much attention. However, some systems enable large-scale gardening and farming to use natural methods.

In our guide, you can learn about problems you could face using these new methods of gardening. From growing tomatoes and avoiding blossom end rot to leaf curl on pepper plants.

Some mistakes are common gardening issues, while some are specific to growing organically. By the end, you’ll know more about growing new plants and understand the issues you’ll face and what to do to fix them.


What Is The Biggest Problem For Organic Gardeners?

When you begin organic gardening, you’ll face five fundamental problems that meet you at the start of your journey.

Here, you can find the five most significant issues you’ll come across:

organic gardening problems

1. Choosing a Suitable Garden Site

If you want to start an organic garden, the first step is to choose a site. The garden should be situated in a sunny, well-drained spot.

Don’t be concerned about the soil’s condition. With some natural ingredients and little effort, you can improve this. 

Next, find a composting location near the garden. Composting is a fantastic way to obtain free, nutrient-dense nutrients into the soil.


2. Garden Soil Amendment

It’s time to develop a productive environment for plants once the site has been selected. This entails turning the soil over and introducing nutrients. There is no such thing as too much compost.

However, exercise caution. Although there are many sources of composted manure, it is sometimes not adequately aged, leaving chemicals that will “burn” young plants.

You can make a new garden bed with raked leaves from trees and grass clippings. The soil can be tested by sending off samples or using a DIY soil test kit

The exams cost more yet can help identify specific soil amendment requirements in your garden.

There are a few simple methods for determining soil composition. 

A mason jar, a cup of soil, and some water can conduct a more exact experiment. 

  1. In a quart jar, put one cup of soil. 
  2. Add Dishwashing liquid (one tablespoon). 
  3. Fill the jar halfway with water and screw the lid on firmly. 
  4. Shake the jar until the soil and water are dispersed. 
  5. Place your jar on a flat surface and leave overnight. 
  6. The sand will be in the bottom in the morning, the silt in the middle, and the clay on top, forming a top layer with some hazy, polluted water.

You can use this information to estimate the composition of your soil. For example, you should aim for a ratio of 40 percent silt, 40 percent sand, and 20 percent clay. 

The pH of the soil can also make the outcome. pH testing kits are inexpensive, but the agricultural extension can also conduct it. 

A slightly acidic pH is ideal (6.6 – 6.8). The pH scale ranges from 0 to 14, with lower numbers suggesting acidic soil and higher ones showing alkaline soil. Seven is a neutral PH.

Add lime to the soil to boost the pH. Ashes might also be helpful. Aluminum sulfate and sulfur will increase the acidity of the soil. These chemicals may be used on organic farms and market gardens because they are natural to the soil.


3. Planting Organic Seeds and Plants

Plant seeds that have been genetically changed should not be used in an organic garden. Instead, the seeds should have been grown using organic methods.

Heirloom seeds and organic seeds are both readily available, and heirloom produces plants that produce consistent, high-quality results.

If non-heirloom hybrid plants are employed, their offspring will yield unpredictable results. Inquire about organic starters while purchasing seedlings.

To begin, simply follow the planting instructions for the specific plant. Carrots, tomatoes, leeks, and other garden plants have different needs.

Planting instructions are always included with seed packets. Determine the optimum planting methods and timeframes with the plant starts and seedlings vendor.

The USDA has prepared a plant hardiness zone chart to determine what can be planted where and when. (Click on the image to explore your region.)

USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map


4. Organic Fertilizer

With organic gardening, fertilizing and composting is typically sufficient. Mulching can help perennials, and fast-growing plants keep moisture during dry periods while slowly leaching nutrients into the soil when the plant requires them.

Making compost tea is one way to swiftly provide nutrients to the plant through the foliage and the ground. This compost has been diluted with water and brewed to kill some microorganisms.

Then you can spray it on plants directly. Organic fertilizers, such as groundfish and kelp, are available from gardening stores besides what you can make at home.

Water is, of course, an essential aspect of any garden. Keep the soil damp but not soggy for most plants. The plants will express their gratitude by providing an abundance of fruits and vegetables.


5. Organic Pest Control

Controlling garden pests is probably the most challenging component of organic gardening.

The gardener’s first line of defense is to pick pests from plants’ fruits or leaves and deposit them in a salt or alcohol solution.

This is simple for pests like Tomato Hornworm, although it will be more difficult for subsurface grubs and small aphids. 

Being proactive is one way to combat pests. Before they become an issue, repel them. Inter-planting your garden with pest-resistant plants is one way to do this.

Basil, cilantro, garlic, and marigolds are some common insect repellent plants. 

Sprays produced from the ground or crushed leaves of these plants can be sprayed directly onto afflicted plants.

Beneficial insects can be attracted or released to eliminate pests quickly. 

To destroy insects or bacteria, spray soaps and oils on plants. However, this kind of defense may kill both helpful and target insects.


Other Factors

Crop rotation prevents pests from accumulating in certain places. Plant tomatoes and celery in different spots each year.

Keeping plants warm with cold-frames or cloches can lengthen the growing season.

Organic gardening is enjoyable. A little plot can produce tremendous harvests, save money, and be healthy.


Is Organic Gardening A Problem?

Wondering about organic gardening without the problems? Here are common ways your organic garden can be affected and what you can do to avoid mistakes. 

organic gardening

1# Spraying Synthetic Chemical Pesticides

Organic gardening’s worst mistake is using synthetic chemicals. Spraying your home garden with chemicals designed to introduce life introduces chemicals that destroy garden life. In addition, using chemicals in your garden is a definite way to contaminate your food. 

Using chemicals is a costly mistake for your family, pets and all the beneficial insects that help around your garden. be sure to clean out your garden shed of any suspect pesticides before you make any common organic gardening mistakes. 


2# Using Synthetic Chemical Fertilizers

Using synthetic chemical fertilizers is a mistake made by most organic gardeners. 

Chemical fertilizers are created of synthetic versions of common plant minerals.

These fertilizers are sold at most garden centers and big box stores and are labeled with an N-P-K ratio.

Organic gardens cannot use chemical fertilizers, and blue crystals in fertilizer are not natural. 

Synthetic fertilizers distribute minerals faster than organic fertilizers or soil conditioners, yet getting fertilizer wrong, you can have pepper plant leaves curling where you think it is from overwatering. 

Atmospheric nitrogen is fixed with hydrogen from natural gas at high temperatures and can form ammonia gas, NH3.

Making your compost or worm castings is a far better option for the environment. You can also find pre-packaged organic plant fertilizer at garden centers or online.


3# Avoid Conventional Potting Soil 

It’s a common organic gardening mistake. In addition, chemical fertilizers might be used unknowingly as you can add them to potting soil if you’re not careful. 

Verify your new potting soil hasn’t been “enhanced” with unspecified “additives” to help assist plants growing. 

Potting soil should comprise a bulk medium like peat or coconut coir, an air-trapping medium like perlite or vermiculite, and pH-balancing lime: compost, composted manure, or worm castings.

Use potting soil made from natural ingredients: peat moss and perlite are good options . You can easily add worm castings to your starting mix and spread homemade compost over your garden soil. 


4# Avoid or Fix Contaminated Ground 

You could contaminate your organic garden soil without chemicals. In an organic garden, it’s a mistake to ignore the soil’s history.

Maybe your garden was near a highway or a gas station, or there is an old oil tank somewhere in your garden?

Old roadways can be contaminated with lead from paints and petroleum pollutants.

If you’re worried about contamination, test your soil. If tests come back positive, you can easily combat this with raised beds and new soil to grow vegetables in.

A raised bed organic garden is superior to reusing existing soil.


5# Using the Wrong Manure 

While some well-composted manure is safe for organic gardening, some are not. Well-composted manure from animals like rabbits are safe for organic gardening.

Manure that is not composted or comes from meat-eating animals shouldn’t be used in organic gardening. These types of manures are not considered a safe addition to your organic garden. 

Manure from pets like cats and dogs can be problematic, and you’ll need to keep this animal waste away from your garden.

You should always wash food from the garden before eating, especially root crops. 


What Are The Disadvantages In Gardening?

Organic products are readily available in most supermarket stores because of high consumer demand. However, growing your organic food is superior. 

The top organic gardening downsides: 

Rural families have more access to organic foods than inner-city families. However, the cost of bringing organic produce into the city and growing it can make it too expensive.

Organic food is more expensive because of strict certification requirements. In addition, no chemicals can be used, which can delay growth and cause pest and weed problems. 

Controlling pests and weeds is essential to organic gardening. Many herbicides and insecticides are safe for commercial horticulture. If applied properly, they’re practical and leave little soil residue or food residue.

To avoid toxicity, many consumers choose organics. However, perennial weeds are challenging to eradicate organically, and organic pest solutions often fail. In addition, changes in weather and population make pest management a problem in organic gardening.

The amount of organic additives for proper food nutrition is many times that of synthetic fertilizer used in traditional growing.

Maintaining nutritional levels is difficult. In addition, compost used to improve soil might transmit illness and increase weeds.

Pathogens and weed seeds can survive composting and infect the next crop.

Animal manure is a joint soil supplement, but it’s challenging to get in urban gardens, making commercial fertilizers easier.


Problems Faced by Organic Gardeners and How to Fix Them

organic gardening mistakes beginners make

Whether a beginner or not, every gardener and farmer will face problems.

Though gardening challenges never seem to end, the venture can be a rewarding hobby that’s enjoyable, relaxing, healthy, and lovely to look at.

Here are some common vegetable garden problems and solutions to them.


Pests Destroying Plants

Garden pests are the most common gardening issues affecting vegetables and other crops. Use methods that will not harm your or your vegetables’ health.

Try organic methods such as soapy water, baking soda spray, diatomaceous earth, and neem oil.


Poor Soil

Planting on poor soil has proven to be a severe challenge. If your vegetable garden crops are wilting or growing slowly, you may have soil problems. 

Plants need healthy soil rich in nutrients and organic matter to thrive.

Mulch, organic compost, and vermiculture can be added to the soil surface and tilled to improve the soil. Test the soil pH level and missing nutrients.



Gardeners regularly experience powdery mildew and bacterial canker.

  • Examine your plants for diseases before planting them.
  • Morning watering helps keep plants healthy.
  • Water the soil, not the foliage.
  • Before planting, let the soil warm up.
  • Space crops for growing properly.
  • Boost plant immunity using organic fertilizers.


Blossom End Rot

This is a condition in tomato plants and is caused by calcium deficiency. 

To fix blossom end rot, ensure your soil doesn’t dry by using lots of organic mulch around roots.

Give your plants added calcium by adding crushed eggshells to the soil.


White Spots on Leaves

Spider mites in your garden cause this, and while a pest, they are easy to treat. Use a gallon of lukewarm water and add one teaspoon of mild organic liquid soap. Also, you can purchase an organic pesticide to help.


Plants Are Weak 

When plants look weak, you may have over-watered, or they lack enough light.

Ensure crops get 6-8 hours of sunlight during the day. 


Plants Are Wilting

If plants wilt, it’s too little or too much water. Feel the soil and if it’s soggy, stop watering. If the soil feels dry, water more, but ensure you’re watering deeply.


Plants Grow Slow

Nothing is more frustrating than plants not growing correctly. Of course, this is improper soil preparation, yet there are many ways to improve the preparation.

Dig up your plants, and make sure the soil is tilled, so plants spread roots. Also, remove any red clay and add compost to improve the soil. 

5 Sustainable Substitutes for Everyday Household Items

Sustainable Substitutes for Common Household Items

Sustainable living is becoming a popular lifestyle choice as people look for ways to reduce their environmental impact. Green living also seems better for your health, pocket, and society.

Charity begins at home, and that’s where your journey to healthier, sustainable living also starts.

In becoming net-zero at home, even tiny changes to your routine can make a huge difference. The smaller things also give you time to plan and save for the bigger things, such as switching to solar, renovating your home with greener options, etc.

One way to adopt a more sustainable lifestyle at home is to find sustainable substitutes for everyday household items—things you use almost daily.

Here are five sustainable substitutes for common household items and why they are better for you and the planet.


1. Cloth napkins instead of paper towels

Switching to cloth towels from paper towels is budget-friendly and better for the environment. Here’s why:

  • You can reuse cloth towels multiple times before you need to wash them. Paper towels can only be used once and thrown away.
  • Washing cloth towels uses less water than manufacturing paper towels.
  • Manufacturing paper towels releases harmful chemicals into the environment, while cloth towels are mostly made from natural, sustainable materials like cotton and bamboo.
  • Here’s the kicker. Cloth towels might save you money in the long run. Think about it; you don’t need to keep buying new paper towels all the time. Simply wash and reuse your cloth towels. Well, as long as they hold together 🙂


2. Reusable water bottle instead of plastic water bottle

reusable water bottle

There’s no denying that plastic bottles are hellishly convenient. Out running and getting thirsty, grab a bottle at the corner store. Traveling, grab some more on your way

Plastic bottles are easy to find and relatively cheap. No wonder they are so popular. However, research points to plastic being bad for you, society, and the planet

First, plastic water bottles are a major source of pollution.

Over 38 billion water bottles end up in landfills each year in the US alone. That’s at least four bottles for each of us on the planet right now! And that’s just in one year.

Because they are made from petroleum, they release harmful chemicals into the environment as they break down. They also take a long time to break down (if ever) fully.

On the other side, some reusable bottles are made from materials like stainless steel and glass that don’t leach chemicals into your water. Even the plastic variants are pretty durable and will last you a while.

And because you can reuse them indefinitely, they often end up being cheaper in the long run than disposable plastic bottles. So next time you reach for a plastic water bottle, consider opting for a reusable one instead. It’s better for you, better for the planet, and better for your wallet.


3. Reusable shopping bags instead of plastic bags

Reusable shopping bags are made from various sustainable materials like cotton, jute, and canvas, which means they don’t end up in landfills like plastic bags.

They’re also sturdier; you can use them repeatedly without having to replace them as often. Plus, they look better than plastic bags and come in various sizes and shapes to fit your needs.

Reusable bags are also better for the environment because they reduce the number of resources needed to produce new bags. And, when you use reusable bags, you’re not contributing to the growing problem of plastic pollution in our oceans and waterways.

Switching to reusable shopping bags is a simple way to reduce your family’s environmental impact and save money in the long run.


4. LED light bulbs instead of incandescent light bulbs

Sustainable household substitutes: LED lightbulbs

There are many reasons to switch from incandescent light bulbs to LED bulbs for families.

One reason is that LED bulbs are more energy-efficient than incandescent bulbs, and they use less power. This means families can save money on their energy bills.

Second, LED bulbs last longer than incandescent bulbs. Families won’t have to replace the bulbs as often, which can also save money.

LED bulbs are also better for the environment because they don’t contain harmful chemicals. They provide a brighter, whiter light than incandescent bulbs, making it easier to see.


5. Bamboo toothbrush instead of plastic toothbrush

There are a few key reasons bamboo toothbrushes may be preferable to plastic ones.

First, bamboo is a sustainable and renewable resource, while plastic is not. Second, bamboo is biodegradable; it won’t add to the growing problem of plastic pollution. Finally, some people believe that bamboo has anti fungal and antibacterial properties, which could help to keep your mouth healthy.

While there is no definitive scientific evidence to support these claims, they are worth considering when deciding between bamboo and plastic toothbrushes. Ultimately, the best choice for you depends on your personal preferences and priorities.



Looking for sustainable household substitutes doesn’t have to be difficult. There are many great sustainable options available that can help you green your home. From using cloth napkins, to reusable shopping bags instead of plastic bags, there are many easy ways to make more sustainable choices in your everyday life.

By making a few simple changes, you can help make a big difference for yourself and the environment.

10 Delicious and Climate-Friendly Superfoods You Should Be Eating

superfoods that help combat climate change

Climate change is an increasingly pressing global issue. As our planet warms, we’re seeing more extreme weather conditions, from droughts and heat waves to hurricanes and floods.

While there’s no one silver bullet to combating climate change, making small changes in our diets can have a big impact. One way to do this is by eating more superfoods low in carbon emissions and packed with nutrients.

Here are 10 of the most nutritious and climate-friendly superfoods to add to your diet:


1. Quinoa

quinoa - superfoods that help combat climate change

Quinoa (pronounced KEEN-wah) is a grain crop grown for its edible seeds. It is native to the Andean region of South America, where it has been cultivated for thousands of years.

The quinoa plant is mostly self-pollinating but can also be pollinated by wind or insects. Quinoa seeds come in various colors, including white, red, and black. The most common variety is white quinoa, which has a mild, nutty flavor.

Quinoa is a good source of protein, fiber, vitamins, and minerals, including iron, magnesium, and phosphorus. It is also a good source of antioxidants. Quinoa can be cooked like rice or used in salads and soups.

Quinoa is sometimes referred to as a “superfood” because it is so nutritious. It is an excellent plant-based source of protein and contains all nine essential amino acids. Quinoa is also high in fiber and low in calories.

Moreover, quinoa is gluten-free and easy to digest. For these reasons, quinoa has become a popular food choice for people trying to eat more healthfully or who have celiac disease or other gluten sensitivities.

Additionally, growing quinoa can help reduce deforestation, as it does not require clear-cutting like some other crops.


2. Sweet Potatoes

Sweet potatoes are a delicious and nutritious root vegetable you can enjoy in many different ways. They are an excellent source of vitamins and minerals, including beta-carotene, vitamin C, copper, and manganese.

This superfood is also a good source of fiber and has a low glycemic index, making them a healthy choice for people with diabetes. In addition to being a healthy food, sweet potatoes are also easy to grow.

They can be planted in the spring or summer and mature in about three months.

Sweet potatoes do best in warm weather, so they are a good choice for gardeners in tropical or subtropical climates. With their high nutritional value and ease of cultivation, sweet potatoes are indeed a superfood that can turn back the clock on climate change.


3. Lentils

Lentils are edible legumes that are part of the pulse family. They are a high source of protein and fiber and are low in calories. Lentils have many health benefits, including being good for heart health, managing blood sugar levels, and helping with weight management.

They are also a good source of iron and folate. Additionally, lentils are a sustainable food choice that can help combat climate change.

Compared to other protein types, such as beef, pork, or chicken, lentils have a much lower carbon footprint. In fact, producing one kilogram of lentils emits about one-third of the greenhouse gases as producing one kilogram of beef.

Furthermore, lentils require less water and land to grow than other crops. As the world becomes increasingly concerned about the climate crisis, it is important to consider our food choices and how they impact the environment.

Lentils are a nutritious and sustainable option that can help us do our part in combating climate change.


4. Cauliflower


Cauliflower is a cruciferous vegetable that is often lauded for its health benefits. It is a good source of vitamins C and K, as well as folate and fiber.

Additionally, cauliflower contains antioxidants that may help to protect against certain diseases. While it is typically white, cauliflower also comes in green, purple, and yellow varieties.

When selecting cauliflower, look for heads that are compact and have fresh-looking leaves. Avoid heads that are brown or have mushy spots.

Cauliflower can be eaten raw, roasted, steamed, or puréed. It is also a versatile ingredient used in soups, stews, salads, and more.

Nutritional profile per 1 cup (chopped):

  • 25 calories
  • 0 g fat
  • 5 g carbohydrates
  • 2 g protein
  • 2 g fiber
  • 80 mg vitamin C
  • 20 mcg vitamin K
  • 66 mcg folate


5. Eggplant

Eggplant is a member of the nightshade family and is related to tomatoes, potatoes, and peppers. It is a superfood that is low in calories but high in nutrients.

Aubergine is a good source of fiber, vitamins C and B6, manganese, potassium, magnesium, and folate. It also contains phytonutrients that have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.

Eggplant can be eaten cooked or raw. It can be grilled, roasted, steamed, sauteed, or stir-fried. You can also use it in soups, stews, casseroles, and pasta dishes. It can be found in most supermarkets year-round.

It is typically purple but can also be white, green, or lavender. When purchasing eggplant, look for firm and shiny ones with smooth skin. Avoid ones that are bruised or have brown spots.

While eggplant is traditionally grown in tropical and subtropical regions, it can also be successfully grown in cooler climates. Eggplant requires full sun and well-drained soil. The best time to plant eggplant is in the spring, after the last frost.


6. Blueberries

Blueberries are one of nature’s true superfoods. They are delicious and packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. In fact, blueberries are one of the richest sources of antioxidants of any fruit or vegetable.

Antioxidants help protect the body against damage from free radicals, which can lead to inflammation and disease. Blueberries are also a good source of fiber, vitamin C, and manganese. They’re low in calories and fat, making them an excellent addition to any healthy diet.

In terms of nutrition, blueberries are an excellent source of vitamins C and K and manganese. One cup of blueberries contains 14% of the recommended daily intake for vitamin C and 24% of vitamin K.

They’re also an excellent source of dietary fiber, with 4 grams per cup. Blueberries contain several vital phytonutrients, including anthocyanins, flavonoids, and tannins. These compounds have been shown to have numerous health benefits, including reducing the risk of cancer and heart disease.

Blueberries are relatively easy to grow, have a low carbon footprint, and can be cultivated in most climates. They prefer full sun but will tolerate partial shade. They prefer acidic soil and full sun, and they can be planted in either containers or directly in the ground. With a bit of care, you can enjoy a bountiful harvest of fresh blueberries every summer.


7. Tomatoes


Tomatoes are often lauded as a superfood due to their high concentration of nutrients and antioxidants. They are an excellent source of Vitamin C, potassium, and lycopene – an antioxidant that has been linked to a reduced risk of heart disease and cancer.

Not only are tomatoes nutritious, but they are also relatively easy to grow. They can be grown in various soil types and require minimal care. However, it is essential to water them regularly, as they are susceptible to drought stress.

When selecting a tomato variety to grow, consider choosing a disease-resistant variant. This helps reduce the need for chemical pesticides, which can harm the environment.

Eating tomatoes is not only good for your health, but it can also help combat climate change.


8. Chia Seeds

Chia seeds have been around for centuries and were a staple food of the Aztecs and Mayans. These tiny black and white seeds are packed with nutrients and offer many health benefits.

They are high in fiber, protein, omega-3 fatty acids, calcium, magnesium, and phosphorus. Chia seeds also contain antioxidants that can help to protect the body against damage from free radicals.

In addition to their nutritional value, chia seeds have other environmental benefits. They require very little water to grow and can actually help to improve soil quality. When chia seeds are planted, they help hold moisture in the soil and prevent erosion. As a result, eating chia seeds can actually help to combat climate change.


9. Seaweed

Seaweed is a type of algae that grows in saltwater environments. For centuries, it has been an important food source in Asia, and more recently, it has gained popularity as a “superfood” due to its high nutrient content.

Seaweed is a good source of vitamins A, C, and E and minerals like iron and calcium. It is also rich in antioxidants and contains anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer compounds.

In addition to its nutritional benefits, seaweed also has environmental benefits. It is a very efficient producer of oxygen, and it can help absorb carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases from the atmosphere.

Seaweed farming is a sustainable and Eco-friendly way to produce food. Seaweed farms do not require freshwater or land resources, and they can help improve water quality by reducing pollution and providing habitat for marine life.

So if you’re looking for a nutritious and environmentally-friendly food, look no further than seaweed!


10. Chickpeas

chickpeas and avocado

Chickpeas are a type of legume that is high in fiber and protein. They are also a good source of iron, phosphorus, and potassium. Chickpeas can be eaten fresh or dried, and you can use them in various dishes.

Hummus, for instance, is made from chickpeas that have been mashed and mixed with olive oil, garlic, and lemon juice. Falafel, another popular dish, is made from chickpeas ground into a paste and fried.

Chickpeas are not only delicious, but they are also nutritious. In fact, they have been dubbed a “superfood” due to their high nutrient content.

In addition to being packed with nutrients, chickpeas are also good for the environment. They require less water than other crops, and they help replenish the soil with nitrogen.

What’s more, growing chickpeas can help combat climate change. One study found that growing chickpeas can sequester up to 22% of the amount of carbon dioxide produced by burning fossil fuels. Thus, eating chickpeas is good for your health and good for the planet.


What is a superfood?

Most of us have heard the term “superfood,” but what does it actually mean?

A superfood is a food packed with nutrients and considered to be especially beneficial for our health. Some common examples of superfoods include blueberries, salmon, and kale. These foods are packed with antioxidants, omega-3 fatty acids, and other nutrients that can help to boost our immune system, improve brain function, and reduce the risk of chronic diseases.

While there is no magic bullet to good health, incorporating superfoods into our diet is a great way to improve our overall well-being.

6 Clever Ways to Get the Most From a Small Garden

get the most from a small garden

Do you have limited space for gardening? If so, you’re not alone. According to the National Gardening Association(NGA), about a third of all households in the United States have gardens that are less than 1,000 square feet.

Despite the challenges of small garden spaces, there are ways to make the most of your limited area. You can grow a bountiful harvest in a tight spot with a bit of creativity and planning.

Here are six ingenious tips for getting the most out of a small garden:


1. Plan Your Garden Carefully

small garden ideas

Before you start planting, it’s important to take some time to plan your garden. Decide what vegetables or fruits you want to grow, and research which plants will do well in your specific climate and soil type.

It’s also a good idea to consider the mature size of the plants you wish to grow. Some vegetables, like tomatoes, can take up a lot of space, while others, like lettuce, don’t need as much room to thrive.

Once you’ve decided what you want to grow, sketch out your garden on paper, including storage space for your gardening tools. If you’re short on space but still need extra storage, you can build your own shed from scratch. While it may seem daunting, a little planning and elbow grease will get you there.

Planning your garden lets you determine how many plants you can fit in your space and where to put everything else.


2. Use Containers

Container gardening is a great way to maximize small garden space. Using pots, planters, and other containers can create a beautiful garden without taking up too much space.

Container gardens are also easy to care for since they can be placed in a sunny spot and watered regularly. Plus, container gardens are perfect for apartments or homes with limited outdoor space.

If you’re interested in starting a container garden, there are a few things you’ll need to know.

First, choose suitable containers for your plants. Clay pots are a good option for most plants, but check that they have drainage holes to prevent overwatering.

Next, select the right soil for your plants. A potting mix is a good option for most container gardens.

Finally, choose the right plants for your containers. Be sure to consider the size of the pots and the amount of sunlight they will receive. With some planning, you can create a beautiful container garden that will thrive in any space.


3. Grow Vertically

get the most from a small garden - vertical gardening

One way to get more from a small garden is to grow vertically. You can install trellises, fences, or other structures for plants to climb. You can also purchase pre-made vertical planters specifically designed for small spaces.

Growing vertically is a great way to maximize your garden. You can do this by training vines to grow up a trellis or planting tall flowers that will reach for the sun. Vertical gardens are space-efficient, but they can also be quite beautiful.

Climbing roses, for example, add a touch of romance to any space, while a column of sunny marigolds is sure to brighten up even the darkest corner. And because vertical gardens take up less ground area, they are often easier to care for than traditional gardens.


4. Plant in Succession

Spring is the perfect time to start a garden, but if you don’t have a lot of space, you may be wondering how to make the most of what you have. One way to do this is to plant in succession.

Planting in succession means growing several crops in the same space over the course of a season. For example, you could produce a crop of lettuce in early spring, followed by a crop of tomatoes in late spring/early summer, and then a crop of winter squash in late summer/early fall.

This approach allows you to get the most out of your garden by ensuring that there is always something growing. And, if you plan, you can even stagger your planting so that you have a continuous harvest throughout the growing season.

This technique also allows you to get multiple harvests from the same space without having to remove the previous crop.


5. Practice Companion Planting

Companion planting is a gardening technique that involves planting certain crops next to each other. This can have many benefits, including deterring pests, attracting pollinators, and improving yields.

This technique involves planting different crops together, allowing them to take advantage of their natural abilities to help each other grow. For example, beans can provide Nitrogen to other plants, while cabbage can ward off pests. By carefully choosing which plants to grow together, gardeners can create a more balanced and productive ecosystem.

In addition to providing benefits like pest control and nutrient supplementation, companion planting can also help improve the garden’s overall aesthetic. When done correctly, companion planting can result in a beautiful and bountiful garden.


6. Water Smart

watering plants

Water is essential for plant growth, but it’s easy to over-water small garden spaces. To avoid this, water deeply but less frequently. This encourages the roots to grow deeper into the soil, making the plants more drought-tolerant.

In addition, consider using drought-tolerant plants in your garden. These plants don’t need as much water to thrive, so they’re a good option for small spaces.

You can get the most out of your small garden space by following these tips. Growing a bountiful harvest, even in the tightest of spots, is within reach will a little creativity and planning.

10 Ways Sustainability and Your Health Go Hand-in-Hand

sustainability and health

The environment impacts every aspect of your life, from what you eat to the quality of the air you breathe. Climate change affects our way of living, and your decisions can be detrimental to the environment. Everything we do now will impact future generations.

Here are some of the top ways sustainability and your health are interconnected.


1. Consider What You Eat

sustainability and health - food

Researchers highlight the importance of managing the food we eat and how it impacts climate change. According to the USDA, 30%-40% of the U.S. food supply is wasted. Parts of these percentages come from food loss at the consumer, supply chain and retail levels, resulting in 133 billion pounds and $161 billion of food in 2010.

We need water, land, energy and fertilizer to produce food — all coming at an environmental cost.

Food wastage is responsible for about 6% of greenhouse gas emissions globally. Moreover, agriculture is the largest contributor to global deforestation. The terrestrial footprint expands due to the growing demand for dairy, meat and crop-based biofuels and increased livestock feed production.

Deforestation contributes to global warming. However, you can live more sustainably by eating more plants and foods local to your area. You could also harvest your own backyard garden.


2. Address Cleaner Water

A healthy environment involves the water you drink. Clean water leads to a healthier lifestyle. However, many don’t consider how much water goes to waste.

The more water you utilize, the more sewage you produce. That sewage gets released back into the environment — requiring more energy to treat it. However, you can make a difference by conserving your household water. 

Consider installing water-saving showerheads, using efficient toilets and adding aerators to your sink’s faucet. Instead of buying water bottles, place a filter on your sink and drink more tap water. You can also set up sprinkler systems so water doesn’t land on the sidewalks and driveway.


3. Create a Healthy Home Environment

The places you live and work can impact your health. For example, you may have household products that emit volatile organic compounds (VOCs) or toxic chemicals. VOCs are commonly found in building materials, cleaning products and air fresheners and cause indoor air pollution. 

What’s bad for the environment is also bad for you. Long-term exposure to VOCs can damage your central nervous system, lungs, liver and kidneys.

Furthermore, sustainability may encourage you to accumulate fewer material goods. Investing your time in creating more space can bring you joy, productivity and comfort. That’s why many people are adopting a minimalist lifestyle. 

You could consider cutting down on the clothes in your closet and the number of things you’ve collected over the years. That way, you can create a stress-free environment while living clutter-free.


4. Find Alternative Modes of Transportation

Living more sustainably means using alternative modes of transportation. Cars release 1.6 billion tons of greenhouse gases each year. However, you can positively change your carbon footprint by minimizing your vehicle and public transportation use. 

Committing to a new method of transportation impacts your physical and mental health and the environment. Jogging, walking and cycling to your destination are all ways to improve your cardiovascular health. 

You could also consider carpooling with your neighbor if non-vehicle transportation isn’t the best option.


5. Reconnect to Nature

people in nature

A healthy environment is highly beneficial for your mental well-being. It can reduce stress and help you get in touch with nature. Hiking in a forest and avoiding busy, congested areas can significantly lower your cortisol levels. 

Camping is another great way to improve sustainability. You can go on a refreshing getaway while conserving energy and connecting with nature.


6. Build Community Connections

Sustainability doesn’t only contribute to your physical health. It also improves your personal relationships. While finding ways to work toward a sustainable lifestyle, you might:

  • Attend local sustainability events
  • Share news and information with friends
  • Volunteer and establish community connections

You may not realize you’re building a network while attending these activities. The people around you share the same goals and values, and this type of support system contributes to your mental well-being.


7. Provide a Place for Mindfulness and Reflection

Making sustainable choices helps you maintain an ecological balance and your sense of comfort. You feel a sense of relief, strengthening your spiritual health. A stronger spiritual orientation keeps you grounded. 

You find more meaning in your everyday life when you feel connected to your environment. Committing to sustainability provides you with a place for more reflection. As you make more healthful choices, you’ll find peace within yourself and establish more certainty if your life and the environment.


8. Make Informed Decisions

Information about the state of our environment is more readily available than before. This means you can always find new ways to achieve sustainability. This promotes your intellectual health, whether you’re finding new ways to recycle or attending a meeting on sustainability.

Staying informed helps you make smarter decisions — and it creates an atmosphere where the right changes are in place. 


9. Save Money

Adopting a sustainable lifestyle can even improve your savings. Many people think sustainability means spending more. However, there are many ways to positively impact the environment and your financial health.

For instance, you can reduce water consumption and save $35 each year by using an Energy Star-certified dishwasher. Changing your home’s air filter reduces power consumption and saves you money on your heat or electricity bill.

Even little savings go a long way and add up quickly.


10. Boost Workplace Morale

team work

Not all companies operate sustainably. However, your employer can create a greener office by participating in sustainable workplace programs and setting up recycling stations. 

Workplaces that pursue a healthier atmosphere can boost individual and team morale. In turn, the company creates a productive environment and reduces workplace stress while doing good for the planet.


Maintain a Healthy and Sustainable Lifestyle

As you can see, going green is linked to overall health and has a positive impact on the environment. Consider taking action toward a sustainable lifestyle so you can create a healthier planet in the future.

10 Ways to Save Energy Right Now for Little or No Cost

Save Energy Right Now

Installing a high-efficiency furnace, replacing old windows, and laying down a thick blanket of insulation in the attic are all well and good, but each of these energy-saving improvements come with a big price tag.

To begin saving up for these big-ticket items, there are plenty of things you can do to reduce energy usage right now for little or no money. Here are my personal favorites.

save energy right now

1. Improve the efficiency of your refrigerator. New fridges are much more efficient than old ones but if one is not in your budget this year, try these tips to reduce the amount of energy your current fridge consumes:

  • Position it away from sources of heat, such as ovens, dishwashers, and sunny windows. *Keep the coils at the back of the unit dust free and maintain good air circulation around them.
  • Replace seals that aren’t tight. To check seals, close the door on a dollar bill. If the bill can be pulled out easily, the seal is not tight enough.
  • Keep the temperature between 35 and 38 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Use an organizing system that allows you to remember where things are located so you can avoid lengthy, energy-wasting searches.

Bonus tip: Keeping your freezer full. A freezer works most efficiently when it’s full but not overloaded. The mass of the food holds temperatures better than the surrounding air. The freezer maintains its low temperature and thus doesn’t have to run as often.

2. Replace the filter in your furnace. Your furnace will be more efficient if you do this regularly. For 1-inch filters, replace them monthly during the heating season (and cooling season if your furnace houses your AC’s evaporator coil). For filters with deeper pleats, you can replace your filter less frequently.

Bonus tip: There’s no need to buy an expensive high-performance filter. (Don’t be tricked by marketers who want to make you think you can turn your furnace into an air purifier. It wasn’t made for that, and the restricted airflow can damage it!) Just choose a standard replacement filter, preferably one that your furnace manufacturer recommends. A washable filter is even better. It will save you $30 or $40 dollars per year.

3. Hang a laundry pole or clothesline in your laundry and use it to hang heavy items like towels and bath mats. This will save you money that would otherwise go to running your dryer longer. Keep some hangers on it and use them to hang shirts and pants as they come from the dryer. This will save time and money spent on ironing. Expandable clothes racks are great for drying small items, and outdoor racks will save even more money.

Bonus tip: Use the moisture sensor on your dryer. It automatically shuts a dryer down when the clothes are dry, saving you 15 percent of the energy you’d otherwise use.

4. Wait for a full load. The average household washes hundreds of loads of dishes and clothes each year. If you run dishwashers and washing machines only when you have a full load, you won’t do as many loads.

This will save a lot of energy. Most of the energy used by a dishwasher goes to heat the water. You can’t decrease the amount of water used per cycle, so maximize efficiency by filling your dishwasher.

A washing machine requires approximately the same amount of energy to wash a pair of jeans and some socks that it does to wash a full load, so fill it up. If you have to do a small load, adjust the water level accordingly.


5. Turn down the thermostat in winter. According to the Department of Energy, you can save 1 to 3 percent on your heating bill for every degree you lower your thermostat. See how low you can go. Thermostats are often set to the upper 60s or low 70s.

Throw on a sweater and set the thermostat to the low to mid 60s during the day. At night, sleep under a heavy blanket or comforter. Most people have no problem handling temperatures in the 50s at night. The lower you set the thermostat, the more energy—and money—you’ll save.

Bonus tip: Install a programmable thermostat. Okay, this tip will cost some money upfront but will pay for itself in a year. Programmable thermostats can store and repeat multiple daily settings, are easy to install, and often cost less than $100.

According to the Department of Energy, you can save around 10 percent of your energy costs a year by lowering your thermostat 10 to 15 degrees for the duration of your 9-to-5 work day.

6. Shop online. In addition to avoiding crowded stores, long lines, and parking-spot searches, shopping from home can save you hundreds of dollars in fuel costs every year. You’ll also reduce the wear and tear on your vehicle.

7. Use storm windows. If you’re one of the many people who don’t bother with using their storm windows, consider this: Single-pane windows lose twice as much heat in winter than double-pane windows.

If your storm windows are in disrepair, hire a local handyman to restore them to working condition or do it yourself. Storm windows improve energy efficiency by reducing air leakage and adding another layer of insulation to your home.

8. Use electric space heaters. Electricity is not normally an efficient way to produce heat, but it is versatile.

For example, you can lower your thermostat and use space heaters to warm up only the rooms that are in use. Doing so is more efficient than heating the entire house—according to the Department of Energy, space heaters use about 14 percent of the energy that the average heating system does.

Bonus tip: When you’ll only be in a room for a short period or you want to heat a small area, choose a radiant heater. A convection heater circulates the air and is a better option when you want to heat an entire room.

9. Use a power strip. TVs, game consoles, computers, microwaves, coffeemakers, and other devices use electricity when they’re off—it’s known as phantom load or vampire power.

Such appliances use up to 40 percent of their full power. To save this energy, plug appliances into power strips and switch it off when you’re not using the devices. When the power strip is off, the attached appliances can no longer draw power from the outlet.

fill your car tyres to save on energy

10. Fill your car tires to their recommended inflation level. The D.O.E. estimates that this will save you up to 11 cents per gallon. To find the recommended pressure for your vehicle, check the inside panel of the driver’s doorjamb, the glove box, or you owner’s manual.

Bonus tip: Save an additional 4 to 8 cents per gallon by making sure you’re using the recommended grade of motor oil.

Editor’s Note: This post has been updated for freshness and consistency.

5 Ways to Make Your Small Business Eco-Friendly in 2022

Eco-friendly small business

It seems that there is at least one new headline a day telling us how humans are destroying the planet.

Whether it’s using too much plastic or burning too much fuel, we are definitely leaving our mark on the world—and it’s not always in a good way.

When a small business becomes Eco-friendly, it does more than just make a positive impact on earth; it paints a wonderful picture of your company by showing others you care deeply about the environment and are doing your part to reduce your carbon footprint.

As a successful entrepreneur, you have a lot to worry about, especially if your business is growing. Are you getting too big? Should you hire more employees? As you decide what’s next for your company, there’s no better time to implement some changes to make your business more Eco-friendly.

Here are the top five ways your small business can go green:


1. Reduce Commutes

bike to work

Every day, thousands of people drive, bike or take public transportation to reach work. A business can set up a company carpool for employees or allow them to work from home a few times a month.

This way, you can decrease the emission of harmful gases or chemicals in the atmosphere.

Organizing company carpools also allows employees to get to know each other better during their daily commutes, which could build a strong bond between them and boost company morale.

Some companies even offer financial incentives to carpool by paying commuters a specific amount per mile. Plus, if you allow your employees to work from home, they’ll be able to reduce the time they take off from work for home appointments (such as waiting for the plumber or electrician).


2. Go Paperless Whenever Possible

Not all customers prefer a paperless office, but giving them a more Eco-friendly option can make a huge difference. Buyers who like the idea of reducing paper waste will be happy to embrace this trend.

Your business should have a choice between email and paper receipts. Give customers the option of receiving all other paperwork digitally (such as contracts and privacy disclosures). Using fewer delivery services will also reduce your postage costs and carbon footprint.

Don’t limit going paperless to customers. Send meeting documents electronically for staff to review ahead of time and display them with a projector at the meeting in an effort to reduce the number of printed documents.

Alternatively, invest in tablets so employees can have documents on hand without printing them.


3. Use Recycled and Reusable Materials

Eco-friendly small business

Make an effort to use recycled materials whenever possible. This particularly applies to paper; each ton of recycled paper saves 7,000 gallons of water and 3 cubic yards of landfill space, along with many other resources.

Opt for recycled copy paper, cardboard pens and Eco-friendly folders made from sustainable resources.

In addition, provide water and coffee for your employees so they can refill their reusable water bottles and coffee mugs, reducing the number of coffee pods and disposable bottles that end up in the landfill.


4. Use Alternative Energy Sources

Work with your utility providers to see if there are alternative forms of energy available to you (such as solar, wind or geothermal).

Consider putting solar panels on your roof or getting your energy from a nearby wind turbine farm, if possible. Not only will this be better for the environment, but it also will be better for your bottom line when you energy costs are reduced.

Some states also provide tax incentives to businesses that choose alternative energy methods. The Small Business Association has regional, state and local energy efficiency programs in the form of grants and loans for businesses to make energy-efficient upgrades.

There are also some smaller things you can do to save energy, such as using LED lighting throughout your business and putting automatic hand dryers in the restrooms to reduce the number of paper towels used.


5. E-scrap Your Electronics

small office electronics

You might not even think about it, but you’re doing great damage to the planet by throwing away used and outdated electronics such as computers, phones, televisions and fax machines.

Because many of these devices contain heavy metals like mercury and lead, they can be destructive for both land and water.

However, these electronics also contain raw materials, which are essential for manufacturers to produce more devices. If they have the means to reuse or repurpose those materials, businesses can save manufacturing money as well as energy.

Be sure to do your research to find the proper way to recycle your electronics if you don’t repurpose them yourself.


Bottom Line

Be sure to include all of the ways you are reducing your carbon footprint on your company information and website so customers know what you are doing.

But remember, going green is more than a marketing gimmick, and it involves much more than just slapping a green color or a picture of a tree on your product.

Customers will recognize if you aren’t authentic, so take genuine steps to help the environment to make it a better place to live for you and your customers.

They will appreciate your efforts and remember you the next time they are in need of the goods or services you provide.

Editor’s Note: This post has been updated for freshness and consistency.


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