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Greening Up The House

Things That Beavers, Cubs, Scouts And Their Parents Can Do To Make Their Home More Environmentally Friendly

It is less expensive to be environmentally considerate than to pollute! Polluting costs money because it wastes maney; therefore, being enviro-smart will save you a lot of money! Here are some things you can do to help.

  1. The temperature of the water heater could be turned down by 20%. The water heater control should be at the warm (about 54 degrees). If you need to mix cold water with the hot water, the temperature is up too high.
  2. The thermostat could be turned down at ight to 17 degrees and shouldn't be above 20 during the day ... wear a sweater if you are chilly. An electronic thermostat will do this automatically.
  3. Doors should not be held open (when heating or cooling) for extended periods of time. Even left slightly ajar, huge amounts of energy can be wasted.
  4. Have your parents take bags to the store when grocery shopping - use plastic or better still, canvas.
  5. A diaper service for young children costs under $15.00 a week. It costs less, is less work and causes no environmental damage or waste. Disposables cost the environment and create HUGE amounts of waste.
  6. Buy and use non toxic cleaners. They are less expensive with no dangerous side effects. Vinegar is a great cleaner. Buy eco-friendly products like Ecover, 7th Generation, Simply Clean, Earth, Hydrox (bleach), Tom's etc.
  7. Turn off the lights, computer, TV when not in use.
  8. Close the refrigerator door as quickly as possible.
  9. Make air freshener with a spray bottle, 1/2 litre of water, baking soda and natural scent (your choice). Spray fresheners like 'LYSOL' use alcohol and phenols to trick your nose and destroy your ability to smell.
  10. Recycle ALL cans, bottles, containers, paper, cardboard, boxhoard, styrofoam and aluininum.
  11. Use a garbage can instead of green garbage bags.
  12. If you have a fireplace, burn meat scraps, bones, cheese or greasy items.
  13. Use old Kleenex to start the fire and recyde your newspapers instead of burning them.
  14. Replace 4 low wattage bulbs with a 100 watt bulb which gives you more light less expensively. Where possible, replace regular light bulbs with compact fluorescent bulbs - they last much longer and use only 1/4 the energy.
  15. Buy recyded products whenever possible (toilet paper, writing paper etc.).
  16. Put an old topless pickle jar into the toilet tank to save water each flush.
  17. Don't run water while brushing your teeth. Wet the brush and turn the water off.
  18. When taking a shower, turn the water on and wet down, turn the water off, soap up and rinse. You can take a shower using less than 2 litres this way.
  19. Buy natural food products rather than inexpensive, unnatural foods that are full of chemicals.
  20. Use electric power instead of batteries. When disposing of batteries, be sure to take them to a hazardous waste depot for disposal - they are toxic.
  21. Buy clothes with Canadian rather than designer labels. Most designer clothes are poorly made.
  22. Buy the best products available - whether it be tools, clothes or appliances. The product will last longer, create less waste, use less energy and over the lifetime of the product and will be less environmentally damaging.
  23. Buy ONLY what you need and learn to get by with what you have.
  24. Buy products in bulk whenever possible - food, nails etc.
  25. At school, make sure you recycle all your recyclables in the proper containers.
  26. Reuse your writing paper on the opposite side. Using only 1 side is wasteful.
  27. Don't laminate your work - it is a waste of resources and takes 1,200 years to break down.
  28. Take a garbageless lunch.
  29. Reuse your plastic pop bottle by refilling it.
  30. Don't buy "juice boxes" or "snack paks" which are overpackaged and expensive.
  31. COMPOST all kitchen scraps, leaves, grass etc. It makes earth that you can use in your garden or to fertilize your lawn.
  32. Say NO to lawn sprays - they are poison and will cause harm to people and animals.
  33. Use ORGANIC fertilizer and overseed with grass seed. Don't use chemicals.
  34. Cut the lawn with a manual lawn mower - good exercise and no pollution. Tell Dad to raise the cutter blades - it should never be shorter than 2.5-3". Never cut when wet or in the morning and water only before 10 a.m. once a week if needed.
  35. Ride your bike instead of taking a car or bus - good exercise and no pollution.
  36. Tell Mom or Dad not to leave the car running for more than 30 seconds - save gas and less pollution. Don't idle - if a train is coming, shut off the engine.
  37. NEVER LITTER! Even small things add up - recycle it or find a garbage can. If you see someone else littering, speak up and tell them to "pick it up". The fine for littering is $300.00.
  38. Help with neighbourhood cleanups, or organize one yourself.
  39. Plant a garden - try buying organic seeds and growing organic produce - it tastes fantastic!
  40. When travelling, treat every place you go as if it were your backyard. Don't pick wildflowers or walk in places you shouldn't - you might damage a fragile ecosystem.
  41. Never pour anything down a storm drain or sewer. Eventually you will be drinking it. Help out with the "yellow fish" program.
  42. Read Earth books like "365 Days To A Better Planet".
  43. Support Greenpeace and other environmental organizations.
  44. Support the need for sustainable living.
  45. Support the HEMP industry. This industry is blooming in Canada for supplements, clothing, food, biomass energy and insulation.
  46. Buy and support "green power" from the Ontario power regulators.
Source: Brad Abernathy
The GARBAGE-Less Travelling Enviro Show