Friday, November 09, 2007

Last Day of Green Week Tips #5 & #6

Some people do some awesome artwork with recycled items. This one is my favorite that I know of. And these two pieces are ones I especially liked. Crafted from found objects/recycled materials, including piano keys, broken china, license plates, rusty tin cans, electrical wire, bottlecaps, and other miscellaneous items these butterflies are about 6 feet tall!

Tip #5 Need to clean up your yard? Choose exercise over emissions: leave the leaf blower behind and pick up a rake; forget the gas-powered lawn mower and purchase a manual push or electric mower.

In addition, do your household cleaning safely. Many common household cleaners contain toxic solvents, fragrances, disinfectants, and other ingredients that can pollute the air and cause respiratory, skin, and other reactions. If every household in the U.S. replaced just one bottle of 28-ounce petroleum-based dish washing liquid with a vegetable-based product, we could save 82,000 barrels of oil a year? This is enough oil to drive a car over 86 million miles! Vegetable-based cleaning products are becoming readily available in supermarkets across the country, particulaly those that specialize in natural foods. Learn about vegetable-based cleaning products you can buy, recipes for cleaners you can make at home, and more tips on green cleaning. Before you clean out your garage and cart everything off to the dumpster, go to to find out where to recycle, donate, and safely dispose of many of your possessions.

I did a little web research on non-toxic household cleaners. Most cleaners are a bit more pricey than the "bad stuff." Man, it's expensive to care! I'd recommend checking your local supermarket for non-toxic cleaners. Just because it says "natural" doesn't mean it is non-toxic.

If you don't want to make your own cleaners (me me me!), here are a few links to cleaning products you can buy:

Tip #6 Replace 60-watt incandescent light bulbs with an equivalent 13-watt compact fluorescent light bulbs.

Compared to standard incandescent light bulbs, one compact fluorescent light bulb saves an average of $35 in energy costs over the life of the bulb. That means that if you change 30 light bulbs in your home, you can save over $1,000.

Additionally, a compact fluorescent light bulb:
Uses up to 75% less energy
Lasts up to 12 times longer than a conventional bulb
Stays cooler
Has the same quality of light

We have tonse of these bulbs in our townhouse thanks to the previus tenants. I think when we move we'll replace them all with cheap bulbs and take them with us!

I've also been meaning to share these photos...a few weeks ago we had the kitchen faucet replaced. As you can see on left, the old one was just that, old. It leaked really bad. I almost had to get out a wrench to turn it off. Rather than fixing the leak we just replaced the entire piece of junk.

Follow up from yesterday's tip:

Last night on my trip to the grocery store, I actually remembered to take my reusable sacks. But, in my rush to get inside I left them in the car. I am proud to admit that I realized I had forgotten them and went back outside before I even started my shopping.

PHEW! That was a long post. Thanks for reading for Green Week! I hope someone out there was motivated to do at least one thing green.

1 comment:

Melissa and Nate said...

Loved all the green tips this week! We are buying fluorescent floodlights for all our lights outside. Thanks for the good reminders!