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Taking Action Against Climate Change

Dr. Jane Goodall, the renowned primatologist, has insightfully remarked that "Every individual matters. Every individual has a role to play. Every individual makes a difference." And nowhere is this more applicable than in dealing with global climate change. Each individual human and animal has an impact on his or her environment. But humans seem to be the ones making the greatest impacts, and we are also the ones who can make judgments and act accordingly. The choices that we make in our day-to-day lives can indeed affect the climate and contribute to, or help mitigate, the growing concern of global warming. Here are some small but effective things you can do to help:

  • Turn off lights when you leave a room
  • Turn off televisions, videos, stereos and computers when they are not in use - they can use between 10 and 60% of the power they use when on
  • Trim home heating costs by up to 6% by lowering your thermostat by 3C at night and when no one's at home.
  • Let your clothes dry naturally rather than using a tumble drier
  • Use economy programs on dishwashers or washing machines
  • Use energy saving lightbulbs - they use a quarter of the electricity and last much longer. If every household in the U.S. replaced the conventional bulbs in their 5 most frequently used light fixtures, this simple act alone would prevent more than 1 trillion pounds of greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Fit seals to external doors, skirting boards and floor boards to reduce heat loss - 15% of heat is lost through draughts and 15% through the floor
  • Look for ENERGY STAR labeled products for the office such as computers, copiers, and printers
  • Use less energy for your daily commute by switching to public transportation, carpooling, biking, or telecommuting
  • Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle: If there is a recycling program in your community, recycle your newspapers, beverage containers, paper and other goods. Use products in containers that can be recycled and items that can be repaired or reused. In addition, support recycling markets by buying products made from recycled materials.
  • Don't let the water run while shaving or brushing your teeth. Do not use your toilet as a waste basket for toiletry items - water is wasted with each flush.
  • Many factors affect the fuel economy of your car. To improve fuel economy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions, go easy on the brakes and gas pedal, avoid hard accelerations, reduce time spent idling and unload unnecessary items in your trunk to reduce weight.
  • Eat less meat: According to The United Nations Food & Agriculture Organization's November 2006 report, the livestock sector generates more greenhouse gas emissions as measured in CO2 equivalent - 18 percent - than transport and is a major source of land and water degradation. The livestock business is among the most damaging sectors to the earth's increasingly scarce water resources, contributing among other things to water pollution, euthropication and the degeneration of coral reefs. The major polluting agents are animal wastes, antibiotics and hormones, chemicals from tanneries, fertilizers and the pesticides used to spray feed crops.
Energy saving bulb

To get the most energy savings, replace bulbs where lights are on the most, such as your family and living room, kitchen, dining room, and porch.