There are many things that can be done around your home to make it green friendly. They include:-
- Consider installing solar panels - they give energy for free!
- Invest in energy-saving light bulbs - they last about 12 times as long as normal bulbs and use 75% less electricity, saving you about £65 over the bulb's lifespan.
- Insulate your home to save energy and cut your bills. Insulating your loft can save £180 a year. You may also be able to get an energy-saving grant towards the cost.
- If you normally add cold water to your washing up, try turning down the thermostat on your boiler to 60 degrees centigrade and save up to £10 a year.
- Switch off appliances when not in use and save up to £11 a year. TVs, videos, stereos and computers left on standby can use 40 to 70 per cent of the energy they use when switched on.
- Turn your central heating thermostat down by one degree centigrade and save up to £30 a year on your heating bill.
- Recycle your rubbish and, if you have a garden, start a compost heap. We throw away our own weight in rubbish every month, but bottles, cans, paper, card, plastic and aluminium can all be recycled, which saves energy, while fruit and veg peelings make good compost for your garden.
- Buy locally produced organic food - supporting local farmers and avoiding the transport emissions that contribute to climate change.
- Encourage wildlife to your garden. Leave small areas untouched. Plant native species. Build a small pond and involve the children.
Whether at home or at work, we can reduce waste through simple, practical measures.
The first principle of waste minimisation is reduce. This in principle asks for a reduction in the amounts of waste produced and sent to landfill. This can be achieved through easy steps such as refusing carrier bags when not needed.
The second principle is re-use, e.g. reusing scrap paper. Or convert it into something new - there are many craft courses available.
Finally, if it is something of use, but simply not wanted by you - recycle it. Why not give it to a charity shop or Freecycle it? Everything from paper, glass, plastic, foil, tin cans and a lot more besides can be taken to your local recycling centre, as well as the kerbside collections which are in operation by Swale Council.