Going green all begins with mindset. Once you and your family decide to make caring about preserving, protecting and restoring our natural world a family value, the rest is easy. Decide that you will do the best you can to go green in your circumstance and within your budget.
Going Green can be Sexy Too!
1. Put up a Clothesline
No single thing you can do saves more energy and money for a smaller investment than putting up a clothesline and using the natural energy of the sun and wind to dry your clothes whenever weather and time constraints permit.
2. Reuse Grey Water
Put a small dish washing type pan or similar water catching bucket in your sinks and shower to catch the water. Instead of just letter bath water go down the drain dip it out into a container. Use this “grey” water to water plants and to flush toilets. If each American saved just one gallon of water a day, each day’s savings would add up to enough water to supply the needs of a city the size of Detroit or Miami for a week.
3. Walk More and Drive Less
Gasoline is expensive and so is each mile you put in wear and tear on your car. The government is also laying plans and putting tracking gizmos in cars starting a few years so that you will be taxed per mile driven. This is already being done in Germany. The more you walk the more fit you become. Walking is a win, win for you and for the environment. You do not need to walk 5 miles through the snow to get a gallon of milk. However, at least be willing to walk from one end of the mall to the other or to walk with your kids the 3 blocks to the park. Again if each car owner in America saved one gallon of gas a week it amounts to millions of barrels of oil.
4. Use Solar Lights
Solar garden lighting has dramatically gone down in cost. Use them in your landscaping, path lights, accent lights, and more. This will save electricity, and give you experience with the pros and cons of solar energy. While the tiny amount of energy that this green source supplies per unit is minute–when multiplied by millions of people saving a little–adds up. You can find a wonderful selection of solar lighting at www.dulaney-solar.com, one of our most respected sponsors here at T&G.
5. Use Native Plants in your Landscaping
Find plants indigenous to your area that you find attractive. Use stone for walkways and benches. Plant deciduous trees with the idea of the tree eventually providing energy saving shade. Do not plant imported or fast growing junk trees. Plant oaks, hickory, walnuts, maples, etc. that will live for generations. If you plant evergreens such as pines, cedar, spruce, etc. align them with the yearly path of the sun so that they also will provide shade in the summer without blocker warming sunlight in the winter.
Guest Post by Pablo Solomon, who is an internationally recognized artist and award winning designer. He has been featured in 24 books, numerous major magazines and newspapers, radio, TV and film. Currently Pablo lives and works with his wife Beverly on their historic 1856 ranch north of Austin, Texas. You can see Pablo’s work at www.pablosolomon.com