More and more people these days are tuning into the fact that we need to do more to keep our planet safe. As we damage the planet as a species, we have to remember that we are also the species with the most opportunity to save the planet. Above all, all it takes is to take the right steps, little by little, until we see a much healthier and happier world all around us. Sometimes, of course, it can be difficult knowing what is best to do. There can often be conflicting information around, or we haven’t quite figured out how well a particular method works. Regardless, we can each of us make an effort to introduce some change in our lives which will bring about a more harmonious relationship with the earth. The home is one area of particular importance, as we spend a lot of time there and we have the freedom to change it as we please. Let’s take a look at some of the things we can do for greener, more environmentally friendly homes.
Use Less Water
Water is the great life-giving substance. Without it, we would not be alive – and we would not be able to carry out many essential daily tasks either. However, as it happens, overuse of water is one of the most common forms of extreme carbon emission. The point is, it takes a considerable amount of energy to get the water delivered through your tap and into your home. So the less of it that you use, the more of a favor you are doing to the earth. A particularly bad example of water overuse is bottled water. This often travels many miles to be able to get to you, and is a ridiculously inefficient way of getting water. You should avoid bottled water at all costs, if you can help it (and you probably can).
One great way to improve your water usage is to have a water borehole dug into your property’s land. If you are in a position to do this, it is definitely worthwhile. Not only will you be helping to save the planet, but you will have your own private water supply – something which a lot of people would like to have. This means no chemicals in the water which you might not approve of, and it also means that you won’t have to pay for water bills anymore. This is the kind of home upgrade that soon pays itself off, so if you can afford the upfront cost it is well worth it. Use less water, and you will be doing plenty to keep your own impact on the environment down.
There is no doubt that you want to be able to heat your home as much as you like, or a much as you need to. But there are many different forms of home heating, and they are not all made equal in terms of their impact on the environment. Anyone who wants to reduce their own negative impact on the earth needs to look into finding a kind of heating which is as efficient as possible. So what are your options in that respect?
The number one heating source for efficiency and environmental benefits has to be solar power. This is something that is actually getting a lot cheaper these days, and you might be pleasantly surprised at just how easy it is now to get hold of. If you manage to get solar power panels installed in your home, you will notice the difference immediately. As is often the case with this kind of thing, it soon pays for itself, so if you have the upfront cash you could do much worse. What’s more, solar is hugely efficient – and you can dispel those old ideas about needing to live in a sunny country for them to work. This is a myth – solar power works just about anywhere that there is daylight of any amount or strength! Truly, solar power can’t be beaten.
But that’s not your only option. Geothermal heating is growing in popularity, and that is for a number of very good reasons. First of all, the heat is actually drawn from the ground, making it one of the best of the renewable forms of energy. What’s more, it is a great way to save a huge amount of money on both heating and cooling costs – but the only downside is that there is a normally pretty significant upfront cost. This gets in the way for most people, as otherwise we would all be using this method. Alternatively, you could consider using biomass boilers, which burn wood and other natural products to provide the heat your home needs.
However you do it, making conscious and enlightened decisions when you are heating your home will make a huge difference to the kind of environmental effect your home has. This is worth bearing in mind if you are ever really keen to limit your own impact on the earth.
The appliances you use in your home are among the most damaging things that exist in your life. However, reasonably it is clear that most modern people are not going to want to give up their appliances. This is fair enough, but there is a middle ground. As long as you approach it in the right way, you can use your appliances in such a fashion that they cause as little damage to the environment as possible. This will at least limit their harm, and you might feel a bit better about using them. How can you make your appliances less harmful to the world?
The most important, and probably easiest, thing you can do is to always be sure to turn off appliances when you are not using them. This is true of absolutely everything, from televisions to dishwashers. What’s more, you should go a step further and unplug them as well. This might seem pointless, but it does actually make a considerable difference to how much energy your appliances use over the course of a year, or even six months. Always unplug, and you will have done plenty to ensure that your appliances are not being overly harmful in their usage. Of course, it is also worth remembering to use them as little as possible in the first place, so as to keep your energy usage as low as possible.
As well as that, it is hugely important to keep your appliances in a condition of top repair. No matter what it is, if it is left untreated then you could have no idea how badly it might be affecting the atmosphere. This is particularly true for certain items such as fridges and AC units. Always call out the AC repair people or the refrigerator repair people as soon as you realise that something is wrong; it really could make a huge difference in the long run.
If there is anything that should be regarded as an absolute basis, it is recycling. If you are lucky enough to live in one of the now many places where recycling is mandatory, then you will find this particularly easy to carry out. When your local refuse collector collects your recycling too, and it is that easy, there is really no excuse not to do it. One area where people commonly slip up is not knowing how to separate out the recycling types. Truly, it is quite easy to learn the different type if you just take a minute to. As well as recycling as much as possible in the home, you should make an effort to petition to your local governing body about recycling more and more. Plastics are commonly not recycled in many places, even though the technology does exist to do so. The more that governments receive pressure from the people to recycle as much as possible, the sooner they will be likely to take it on board. So go out of your way to improve the recycling regime in your area – and at the same time, do your bit to recycle everything you can at home.
Repair & Reuse Before Discarding
What we throw away says a lot about us as individuals, as families and as nations. Before you throw something away, ask yourself if you could use it for another purpose. This is essentially recycling, but done even sooner. Some people are starting to call it upcycling, as they use old items to create new things. The amount of things you can do here is endless, whether it’s using old cans to make flowerpots, keeping jars for jams or whatever it might be. There are a million ways to reuse, so you should keep your eye out for opportunities to do so.
Similarly, you should make sure that you try to repair items before you simply throw them away. This alone will help you to make a huge difference to the effect that you have on the world, so it is worth remembering to do so.