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Thursday, September 25, 2008

7 Completely No-Brainer Ways To Go Green And Save Money

green earth

Going green doesn't have to mean losing green. There are so many ways to be eco-friendly without getting rid of the paper in your bank account. Sometimes, being green is not only pricey, but also complicated, and inconvenient for the average person. Composting, making your own bio-fuel, buying only organic-- all are great for the environment, but unrealistic for the newly green. Follow these steps to make your life greener, with less money spent.

clothes line

Dry Clothes the Natural Way
Return to the virtuous days of old, when laundry was hung outside to dry. Let your clothes air-dry instead of wasting massive amounts of energy in the dryer. Not only will your wallet thank you, but your clothes will benefit from the open-air freshness.


Use Body Heat This Winter
Find someone to cuddle with by Winter. This is free and fun, and it actually works. Your body is a toasty 98.6 degrees, so hugging someone else is the best form of insulation. It's cheaper than raising the thermostat, and it doesn't put a strain on the earth.

vampire power

Say No to Vampire Power
Appliances like printers, blenders, and blow-dryers that remain plugged in while not in use drain your energy slowly. It's a process called vampire power. You may think that because these items are not in use, you're not using electricity, but the truth is that these appliances are always in stand-by mode, and require small amounts of electricity constantly. The more appliances you have plugged in, the more energy you consume. And it can really add up. A simple remedy is to go around the house and unplug unnecessary things, like that old VCR that you never use, or the TV in the guest room. At night, when you shut off your computer, switch off the power strip as well. Unplug fully charged cell phones from the adapter, and unplug the adapter from the wall, too!


Digitize Your Reading
Don't allow more trees to die! Take your reading into the 21st century by reading online or using a Kindle. Of course you can still check out books from the library (or read them an hour at a time at your local bookstore), but both of those option require you to leave home and burn up some more fossil fuel! And remember that websites like Barnes & Noble allow you to buy used books directly from their site. It's cheaper than buying new, and you can feel better about your impact on the environment.

shopping bag

BYOB: Bring Your Own Bags
Leaving the grocery store with a heap of plastic bags is so not cool anymore that many cities are banning them. Although paper is a smidgen better, using cloth bags is that much closer to perfection. Bags are not really necessary at all if you compartmentalize your trunk with a recyclable box and put your food directly from your cart into your box. When the cashier asks, "paper or plastic," you can say "neither!" and feel good about reducing the amount of plastic in landfills. It may feel weirdly pedestrian initially, but the awkwardness will wear off!

tap water

Bye Bye Bottled Water
Recent studies have shown that filtered tap water is just as healthy as expensive bottled water. It's time to say goodbye to bottled water that pollutes the earth with long-lasting plastics. Invest in a metal bottle and a simple tap water filter. It'll definitely be cheaper than constantly buying bottled water, and it's healthier for the earth.

Work From Home
Everyone knows that gas prices are going up, but so are all energy prices. Carpooling is so yesterday. If you can convince your boss to let you telecommute a few days a week, you'll be saving both you and your company money. With freely available remote access technology at your fingertips, you can easily work from home without skipping a beat.

These are just some of the many low-to-no-cost things you can do to make a positive impact in the environment, have a lighter carbon footprint, and make the world a little greener. Don't just sit there: be the change you wish to see in the world.