Resolutions make a difference

Here are several simple steps to go green in 2012:

1. Recycle: recycling programs exist in cities and towns across the whole country, helping to save energy and protect the environment.

What you can do:

  • Place a separate container next to your waste container or printer, making it easier to recycle your bottles, cans, and paper and also storage your electrical and electronic equipment in special containers or take it to the collection stations.

2. Turn off the lights. On the last Saturday of March—March 31st in 2012—hundreds of people, institutions, and governments around the world turn off their lights for an hour as part of Earth Hour, a movement to address climate change.

What you can do:

  • Earth Hour happens only once a year, but you can make an impact every day by turning off lights during bright daylight, or whenever you will be away for an extended period of time.

3. Make the switch. In 2007, Australia became the first country to “ban the incandescent bulb,” drastically reducing domestic usage of incandescent light bulbs. According to the country’s environment minister, this made a big difference, helping to conserve an estimated 4 million tons of greenhouse gas emissions by 2012.

What you can do:

  • You can replace incandescent bulbs with compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) or LEDs.  CFLs use only 20–30 percent of the energy required by the incandescent bulbs to create the same amount of light, and LEDs use only 10 percent, helping reduce both electric bills and carbon emissions.

4. Reduce the heat

It is known the fact that consumers can save up to 15 percent on heating bills by just  adjusting their thermostats.

What you can do:

  • Reducing the heat by 2 to 3 degrees for eight hours can result in saving  5–15 percent on your home heating bill.

5. Choose other transportation

We all know that by using  our car or public transportation we contribute to increased emissions of greenhouse gases, as well as higher bills
Cities across the country are investing now in new transportation that help exercise and offer an alternative to being cramped in subways or buses.

What you can do:

  • If available, use your city’s bike share program to run short errands or commute to work.
  • Even if they don’t have bike share programs, many cities and towns are incorporating bike lanes and trails, making it easier and safer to use your own bike for transportation and recreation.

6. Share a car

Even if you don’t want to give up at your own car, using a shared one when traveling in a city can greatly reduce the challenges of finding parking (car share programs have their own designated car parks), as well as your environmental impact as you run errands or commute to work.


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