Going green is a term that is tossed around by different people. Its definition is often changed to fit one’s opinion. Some say conservation, while others reply renewable. The argument can go on and on. But, no matter who wins the debate, the fact of the matter is humans are and will always be consumers. We will always use and need resources. While this is the truth, we cannot escape the fact that we are on one planet and this means that our resources our limited. It is important that we take charge of this and change our own ways. We cannot wait for the government to make the changes for us. It should be something we can do on our own.
Here are a few practical ways to ‘go green’:
Use Less, Buy Less, and Waste Less
Be a conscious buyer. Buy things that you will only use for a long time. According to a study made, only 1 percent of what you buy today will still be in use 6 months later. That means you will be putting to waste 99 percent of what you buy from packaging to even the unit you have. While there are some things that we need, it is critical that we are not caught up in a cycle of shopping for the sake of shopping.
Spend to Save
Cost versus savings is often an idea that is superseded by time. If you want to really find the true value of your savings, you need to look at it from a long-term perspective. One reason people end up paying more and replacing things often is that they only see things in short-term. Some things may initially cost less but might cost you a lot more as years go by in replacements. For instance, if you are building a home, invest in adding thicker insulation. This might be an added expense but it is one easy way to lower your energy bills in heating and cooling.
Investing in Green Energy
Solar panels are good ideas to have, but not everyone will be able to afford the cost, installation and maintenance. However, if it is available in your area, you can opt to appropriate your electricity costs to more renewable sources. Electric companies like AGL in Australia supply renewable power to homes in Queensland. By signing up to these green programs, one can choose how much of their home will be powered by electricity from renewable energy. In turn the money one invests goes into financing, building, and maintaining renewable energy power programs.
The truth is saving the environment cannot simply be done in 3 steps. While recycling, reducing, and reusing helps, there are a lot more things needed for use to truly ‘go green’. It is still a long journey to living in a green society. But, like all journeys, we need to make the first step.
Gene Armstrong is an energy expert based in Australia. He specializes in knowledge about energy efficiency and green energy.