There is no question that the environment is one of the most important issues in the world today. Our planet is truly at crossroads, and what we do in the next ten years alone will have significant consequences, either good or bad, for future generations.
The problem is that sometimes we feel so overwhelmed with the challenges at hand; we feel that we can’t do anything to solve the problem. Yet the environment is one area where we actually can make a difference and have an impact almost immediately. There’s no need to wait for government treaties, revolutionary new forms of energy, or miracles cures. We can start right now and right here in our own homes and our own communities. So what are we waiting for?
They say home is where the heart is, and when it comes to our ecosystems, it is also where the solutions are as well. There are literally hundreds of things we can do in our everyday lives that will make a difference. To begin, we can simply consume less energy. This means, for example, shutting off the computer when you’re finished using it. Common lore says that we can just leave our computers running for hours and hours. Unknown to many is that a fan running on a standard desktop computer uses as much energy as a light bulb. Would you leave a lamp on in your living room for no reason? I would hope not. Why would you do the same for your computer?
We can also take shorter showers, use florescent light bulbs that use less energy with the same amount of light, ensuring that your home is insulated properly (which will also radically cut down on heating bills in the winter since as much as 35% of heat loss occurs though an un-insulated ceiling alone), buying appliances that use less energy, and using fans in summer instead of air conditioning.
Stepping outside the home, we can also walk and bike more instead of driving all the time. This would reduce greenhouse gas emissions that are increasing global temperatures and threatening thousands of species around the world. It would also cut down on costly gas bills. If walking or biking is impractical, take public transportation. It’s still cheaper than driving a car, and it’s better for the environment. If you have to drive or are thinking about buying a car, purchase an environmentally-friendly hybrid vehicle or one that has good gas mileage. Also, make sure your tires are properly inflated. This will mean paying less at the pump, and it will make a real difference in air quality over the long run.
These are just few of the things you can do each and every day. What is most surprising is how really easy they are to do – and how much money they’ll save you. We can’t wait any longer to turn the tide and clean up our environment. We can do so right in our very own homes, starting today.
Author: Bilaal Rajan