What can we do for Green. . .

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nota
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What can we do for Green. . .

Postby nota » Fri Feb 09, 2007 10:51 am

. . .I've been seeing some ads of late that make some sense of things that individuals or families can do EASILY that promote Green. There are many many that don't involve gasoline consumption.

For instance-if everyone in NYC washed their laundry in cold water for just one day. the energy savings could be 5.7 million kwh. Enough to power every light in the Empire State building for an entire month. (my laundry is going to be in cold water from now on. I've been washing and rinsing in warm because getting the cold water rinsed clothes out of the washer makes my hands cold and chapped)

Anyone else?
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Re: What can we do for Green. . .

Postby lock+load » Fri Feb 09, 2007 11:00 am

Wear it.  Being my favorite color, green makes up a decent portion of my wardrobe.

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Re: What can we do for Green. . .

Postby beccanator » Fri Feb 09, 2007 11:15 am

Just a few simple ones from me:

  • Turn off/unplug your small gadgets when they are not in use. Although your new cell phone, PDA, MP3 player or laptop may not consume much electricity individually, powering these devices can add up to 15–20 percent of your home’s energy consumption.
  • Many appliances use electricity even when they’re turned off. Anything with a remote control, external power supply (that cube-shaped thing on the electric plug), or a clock display is consuming energy. This can account for 10 percent of your home’s power consumption. Unplug these items or turn them off with a power strip.
  • Another laundry related tip- wash your laundry in non-peak hours of the day (late at night for instance); this takes the strain off the system/requires less overall energy.
  • Keep the tires of your car properly inflated- this can increase fuel efficiency.
  • Don't let your car idle. Idling for longer than 22 seconds actually uses more energy and causes more air pollution than restarting your car.
  • Compost your uncooked, non-animal product food waste if you have a yard in a city whose ordinance allows compost piles.
  • Recycle.
Last edited by beccanator on Fri Feb 09, 2007 11:29 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: What can we do for Green. . .

Postby Moniker » Fri Feb 09, 2007 11:27 am

Here are three tips that will not only help the enviroment, it'll save you a bit on the pocketbook:

Turn your hot water heater down to 120 degrees. That'll save an assload of money on your bills over time as well.

Turn off all computers and electronic hardware via the powerstrip. Most household appliances use 6-8 watts of power regardless if they're turned off.

If you have a gas HVAC system, install a heat pump. The savings over time (plus the discount you get from KCPL) is well worth it - hybridize your energy!

Stop accelerating/breaking hard and fast in your car. You'll save money on gas and help the environment.

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Re: What can we do for Green. . .

Postby kcmetro » Fri Feb 09, 2007 11:30 am

Buy a Japanese-made car.  :D

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Re: What can we do for Green. . .

Postby KC0KEK » Fri Feb 09, 2007 11:36 am

The house I'm buying will need a new roof in about five years, and I'm seriously considering using solar shingles on at least one side. Solar shingle technology has come a long way over the years, and I bet it will be even better by the time I'm ready to use it.

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Re: What can we do for Green. . .

Postby KCMax » Fri Feb 09, 2007 11:36 am

Unplugging your TV when not in use
Put a blanket around your hot water heater
Put a brick in your toilet
Find people to shower with to save water!
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Re: What can we do for Green. . .

Postby kcmetro » Fri Feb 09, 2007 11:39 am

KCMax wrote:Unplugging your TV when not in use
Put a blanket around your hot water heater
Put a brick in your toilet
Find people to shower with to save water!


I hear the Oklahoma girls are great for that. Lots of energy-conscious girls down there.  :)

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Re: What can we do for Green. . .

Postby KC0KEK » Fri Feb 09, 2007 11:45 am

Another option is two-stage toilets, which have a two-position handle: One position uses the standard 1.6 gallons for poop, and the other uses less water for pee.

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Re: What can we do for Green. . .

Postby dangerboy » Fri Feb 09, 2007 11:47 am

These little things are all great, but they don't excuse us from the big things.  Transportation is the single biggest source of greenhouse gas emissions, more than triple residential energy consumption.  It's great and all to fiddle around the edges and it makes us feel good without really inconveniencing our gasoline-dependent lifestyles, but we have to cut our automobile usage to make a significant impact on climate change.

All all-solar house with compact florescent light bulbs is great, but it doesn't make much difference if it's still located in a place where the homeowner can't use public transportation, walking, or bicycling for most of their trips to work and shopping.

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Re: What can we do for Green. . .

Postby KC0KEK » Fri Feb 09, 2007 12:04 pm

Okay, I won't bother, then.

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Re: What can we do for Green. . .

Postby DaveKCMO » Fri Feb 09, 2007 1:06 pm

air travel is the fastest growing segment of greenhouse gas emissions. if you're traveling less than 500 miles, take a bus, a train or a fuel-efficient car (over 30mpg average).

buy fewer things imported from overseas. this one gets lost a lot, but the biggest spike in overall transportation-related emissions (aside from the SUV craze) can be attributed to our country's massive reliance on imported goods and the fuel it takes to traffic it half-way across the world. raw materials, wine, electronics, clothing... almost all of it comes from somewhere else and uses lots of fuel to get to you. thankfully, most japanese automakers assemble several models domestically.

eat less beef. unpopular, yes, but methane from corporate cattle farming is very high on the list of GHG sources outside of transportation and energy production. i stopped eating beef on january 1.

light bulbs and recycling will make you feel better and don't require much sacrifice, but they're a drop in the bucket.

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Re: What can we do for Green. . .

Postby Maitre D » Fri Feb 09, 2007 1:49 pm

I used to try and recycle, and I still take care of my trash, etc.  I turn down the power when I leave during the day, but mostly b/c it's cheaper.

But I won't listen to ONE thing about "environmentalism" until people discuss population growth & immigration.  Our little sacrifices pale next to what resources a family of 4 will use after arriving in America.  And with India & China entering 1st world, capitalist economies, nothing we do will offset the massive production of greenhouse gasses they'll produce.
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Re: What can we do for Green. . .

Postby KCMax » Fri Feb 09, 2007 1:56 pm

DaveKCMO wrote:air travel is the fastest growing segment of greenhouse gas emissions. if you're traveling less than 500 miles, take a bus, a train or a fuel-efficient car (over 30mpg average).

buy fewer things imported from overseas. this one gets lost a lot, but the biggest spike in overall transportation-related emissions (aside from the SUV craze) can be attributed to our country's massive reliance on imported goods and the fuel it takes to traffic it half-way across the world. raw materials, wine, electronics, clothing... almost all of it comes from somewhere else and uses lots of fuel to get to you. thankfully, most japanese automakers assemble several models domestically.

eat less beef. unpopular, yes, but methane from corporate cattle farming is very high on the list of GHG sources outside of transportation and energy production. i stopped eating beef on january 1.

light bulbs and recycling will make you feel better and don't require much sacrifice, but they're a drop in the bucket.


These things are all nice, but if only I do it, then absolutely no energy is conserved. Those planes will still fly, those goods will still be imported, and those cows will still be around.

At least with the light bulbs, walking more, conserving water, just being conscious about your energy usage, actually does conserve energy.
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Re: What can we do for Green. . .

Postby lock+load » Fri Feb 09, 2007 1:59 pm

So, basically, here is what you need to do:

1)  Turn off all lights.  Sleep from sundown to sunrise so you will not need to use artificial light.
2)  Stop eating beef.  Cows are bad.  They pass too much gas.
3)  Stop driving.  Car exhaust=bad.  Stop flying as well, plane exhaust=very bad.  I imagine a horse is out of the question as well, see #2.  Plus we don't want the mess in the street.
4)  Do your laundry after dark.  But see #1.  You'll have to do it in the dark.  Good luck folding your clothes.  Don't trip over the laundy basket.
5)  Do not purchase any imported goods.  Too much fuel is used to get them here.  Don't raise your own beef though, because, again, #2.
6)  Do not flush the toilet.  It wastes water.  Dispose of it in another way.  This ties in well with the recycling suggestion.

So, don't eat, don't travel, don't use electricity, and recycle your crap.  Sounds easy enough!

I'll stick with wearing green.

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Re: What can we do for Green. . .

Postby nota » Fri Feb 09, 2007 2:01 pm

I was kind of impressed with the cold water laundry savings because it is painless and the end result is the same. My white clothes will still get washed in hot because I like them white, but the rest is in cold.

We seldom recycle because as I've heard most recycling costs more than it saves money wise.

Everyone should have an automatic setback thermostat on their house. Not only is it energy efficient, but it is cheaper on your power consumption.

I'll give up my SUV when Al Gore gives up his. What I continue to consciously do is to carpool, don't make unnecessary trips and especially don't take the long way wherever I go which is something I've always done so I get to see more of my surroundings. It is interesting in that I'm doing prep for tax time now, so I totalled up the costs of gasoline for my car. I've used almost 13% less this year than last.
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Re: What can we do for Green. . .

Postby chrizow » Fri Feb 09, 2007 2:22 pm

pittsburghparoyal wrote:But I won't listen to ONE thing about "environmentalism" until people discuss population growth & immigration.  Our little sacrifices pale next to what resources a family of 4 will use after arriving in America.  And with India & China entering 1st world, capitalist economies, nothing we do will offset the massive production of greenhouse gasses they'll produce.


nota wrote:I'll give up my SUV when Al Gore gives up his.



while i will not pretend to be the most "green" individual, the mentality represented by these two statements is precisely what is wrong.

there is no question that the growth levels of greenhouse gasses in china and india are troubling and should be addressed.  however, even with their growth, the US produces many times more pollutants, esp. per capita, that those two countries.  the US is the world leader in producing pollution, so why not be the leader in reducing it?  pointing the finger at emerging economies to justify our own excesses is ridiculous.

as for the Al Gore comment, i hope it was in jest.  you won't consider alternatives to your SUV until a leading environmentalist does?  wtf? 

whether china, india, or al gore takes the lead has no bearing on the fact that humans of all nationalities are destroying the only world we have.  it also has no bearing on whether we should all strive to do better.  the only way to solve a global issue is to think globally - that is, beyond national borders and our own homes and minds. 

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Re: What can we do for Green. . .

Postby nota » Fri Feb 09, 2007 2:36 pm

chrizow wrote:
as for the Al Gore comment, i hope it was in jest.  you won't consider alternatives to your SUV until a leading environmentalist does?  wtf? 

whether china, india, or al gore takes the lead has no bearing on the fact that humans of all nationalities are destroying the only world we have.  it also has no bearing on whether we should all strive to do better.  the only way to solve a global issue is to think globally - that is, beyond national borders and our own homes and minds. 


Nope. Not in jest at all. If Al Gore doesnt' believe in his cause enough to cut his usage, I'll follow his lead. What on earth makes you (or him) think he is above the rest of us in what and how he consumes? And spare me the "leading environmentalist" bullshit. Willie Nelson is more of an environmentalist than Al. Nobel prize or no.

What have you personally done to conserve?
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Re: What can we do for Green. . .

Postby chrizow » Fri Feb 09, 2007 2:45 pm

that's totally absurd.  what about other environmentalists who drive efficient vehicles or don't drive at all?  you focus on Gore's SUV ownership in order to justify your own.  you apparently don't believe he is a "leading environmentalist" so why, in your words, would you "follow his lead?"   :?

like i said i'm not the most green person out there, but that doesn't mean i justify my own failings by pointing to the failings of others.  as for what i personally do, i make conscious consumer choices by avoiding unnatural and harmful products, drive an efficient vehicle, live in a small apartment, use efficient appliances and bulbs, don't waste water in the house, minimally use paper products, re-use things, i was an ardent recycler (have gotten lazy since i moved downtown), i support candidates who care about environmental issues, eat no meat and try (unsuccessfully) to not eat or consume other animal products, and on and on. 

i can do a lot better and i admit it.  i'm not justified in being inefficient because Al Gore is inefficient.
Last edited by chrizow on Fri Feb 09, 2007 2:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: What can we do for Green. . .

Postby KCMax » Fri Feb 09, 2007 2:46 pm

Jim Glover gave up his Town Car! Isn't that enough?
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