It’s become impossible to deny the effects human activity is having on the environment. With global warming creating unprecedented problems all over the world, remaining blissfully ignorant is no longer an option for any of us.
Although large corporations are responsible for the lion’s share of pollution (and therefore the lion’s share of fixing things), there are numerous steps the rest of us can take to limit our carbon footprints. As the saying goes, “Change starts at home.” By taking steps to make your residence more energy-efficient, you can reduce your environmental impact while saving money in the process.
Upgrade to Long-Lasting Organic Products
These days, virtually every product under the sun can be purchased in an organic variety – and home furnishings are no exception. In addition to being guilt-free, many organic products are highly resilient and built to last.
For instance, furniture made from organic and/or reclaimed materials can add flair to any area of your home and stay with you a lot longer than most standard-grade furniture. You can even go green in the bedroom by investing in comfy organic pillows, mattresses, comforters and bed-frames.
Upgrade to Energy-Efficient Appliances
Without certain appliances, most modern-day households would have considerable trouble functioning. For example, working refrigerators, ovens, dishwashers and washing machines are crucial to a variety of daily tasks. However, these appliances can also contribute to both your carbon footprint and power bills.
Most appliances designed more than a decade ago weren’t exactly built with energy efficiency in mind, which is made apparent by how much power they gobble up. On average, home appliances account for about 20 percent of a household’s power bill. Conversely, a fair number of modern appliances are created to be both energy-efficient and high-performance.
The next time you find yourself in the market for new home appliances, make a point of limiting your choices to Energy Star options. Products that bear the Energy Star label consume far less power than other appliances without compromising in the performance department.
While it’s true that energy-efficient appliances tend to come with higher price tags than other products, they also stand to save you a bundle in energy costs, thereby paying for themselves. Most budget-conscious homeowners would agree that spending a little more money in the short term is preferable to shelling out a small fortune in energy costs over the long run.
Upgrade to Energy-Efficient Windows
Heating and cooling costs can be a thorn in the side of even the most well-to-do homeowner. If you live in an area that’s known for brutally cold winters or swelteringly hot summers, there’s a good chance that your home’s central heating and cooling system is regularly put through its paces. While there’s no denying that robust heating and cooling systems are essential in most parts of the country, there are numerous ways you can give your home’s system a break and save yourself some money in the process.
For starters, you can upgrade your home’s windows. Standard single-paned windows may be inexpensive, but they generally don’t offer much in the way of energy efficiency. It’s very easy for inside air to escape through these windows and for outside air to find its way inside through them. With this in mind, consider upgrading to energy-efficient windows, which contain multiple panes.
It’s far more difficult for air to escape through these windows, which helps ensure that your heating and cooling system won’t constantly be running itself ragged. Like Energy Star appliances, energy-efficient windows represent a short-term expense. Although they’re pricier than standard windows, the money they’ll save you in the long run should prove well-worth the temporary financial setback.
With climate change altering the lives of everyone on the planet, there’s never been a more crucial time to embrace conservation. Through making small changes to our daily routines and being willing to embrace change, we can do right by the environment and help offset the worsening effects of global warming.
There are numerous benefits to making your household more energy-efficient. In addition to reducing the size of your family’s carbon footprint, prioritizing energy efficiency can be a boon to your finances. So, in the interest of helping the planet and keep your savings intact, consider taking the measures discussed above.