Showing posts with label Carbon footprint. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Carbon footprint. Show all posts

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Understanding What It Means To Be Eco-Friendly: What To Look For In The Products You Buy


One of the biggest buzzwords of the twenty-first century is “eco-friendly”. Companies of all kinds are trying to tap into the market of those people who care about the environment, but consumers can be taken advantage of if they do not know what they are looking for in an eco-friendly product. If you want to start shopping green and reducing your carbon footprint, then there are several things you should be looking for in any product that claims to be “eco-friendly”. Consumers are learning what concepts like eco-friendly, renewable, sustainable, and eco-conscious really mean in today's world, TD Friends of the Environment donations go a long way to educating people committed to protecting the environment.

Materials


The most important thing to consider is what the item is being made from. There are basically two types of materials that you should look for when you are making an eco-friendly consumer purchase. The first of these is renewable materials, or materials that will come back when they are used. When companies make plastic for a phone case, the oil that is the raw material for the plastic is non-renewable, as it does not come back when it is used. On the other hand, a wooden or bamboo phone case is considered renewable since those items will grow back on their own. Related to the idea of renewable resources is sustainability, the other thing that you should be looking for. Sustainability means that companies can continue to use the materials and processes at a reasonable level for a long period of time without causing damage to the local environment. Clear cutting forests for wooden furniture meets the criteria for renewable resources, but it fails the sustainability check because the companies are cutting down the trees faster than they can regrow.

Durability


The next thing that you will want to look at in the products that you buy is the durability of the item itself. As an eco-conscious consumer you want to protect the environment, but you also want to make sure that the items you purchase will last you a long time, and they will be able to stand up to the wear and tear that you will put them through. Too many times eco-friendly products are made with renewable and sustainable materials, but those materials fall apart with heavy use and you wind up buying that product over and over.

Manufacturing


Finally, you should consider the way that the items are manufactured, if you want to be a true eco-friendly shopper. Most of the chemicals that are causing global warming can be attributed to power production and manufacturing, so you want a manufacturer who works hard to offset this issue. In eco-friendly terms these companies are called “carbon neutral” because they use renewable forms of energy for production, or they take actions, like planting trees, to balance the amount of carbon dioxide they are putting into the atmosphere. While there are many companies that are striving for carbon neutrality, most of the companies that you will have ready access to are not totally carbon neutral. With all other things being equal, if you want to be an eco-friendly consumer, go with the company that claims carbon neutrality or claims to have a lower carbon footprint.
Shopping in an eco-friendly way requires more time and more work than shopping without thinking about the environment; however, once you find those manufacturers that you like, shopping is a breeze. The important thing about eco-friendly shopping is to remember to look at the label and read carefully so you know exactly where the product is coming from.

I am Lindsay Barlow, and I am an eco-conscious shopper and an environmentalist. Sites like Bambooki are great for finding eco-friendly products that are perfect for all of your home needs.


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Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Going Green For Good

It is a concept that has been around for a long while now and is increasingly gaining importance. Green energy is the creation of energy in a manner that reduces the brunt of its negative impact on the surroundings. Some of the traditional sources of energy are notorious for the greenhouse gases that they cause. There are several sources of green energy that we are familiar with. Solar, wind, geothermal as well as hydro-energy are all great sources of alternative energy. The waste produced in the creation of energy from these sources is minimal compared to oil and coal.

So what exactly does this mean for you? Installation of green energy systems has a way of decreasing a home's dependency on the power grid. It reduces the carbon footprint emitted from your home and makes your electricity bills something to smile about at the end of the month. Whether you are in college or close to retirement, switching to green energy solutions can only be beneficial.

Financial Considerations


One of the first things most people worry about is the initial cost of switching a home to solar power. The average cost is around $8 to $9 for every watt of power and approximately 30% more for the associated installation of batteries. This may come across as rather expensive, but the fact is that such a system will pay for itself in a short amount of time.

Such systems especially make sense for those families that are close to retirement and want to have cost-effective methods in place to help their finances maintain some stability. If you do find that such installation is expensive, you can alter things one room at a time, until you have made the transition. Or you could start with the outdoor lighting of your home. Many people hesitate to light up the outside of their homes and consider it to be a frivolous expense. However, with solar lighting, you can have a great source of light that will not affect your bills. It keeps anti-social elements at bay and allows your home to stay safe.

Heat with Bio-fuels


Another great use of green technology is the concept of using bio-fuels to heat up your home. These are comprised of wood, oil and also fat. If you have one of the usual propane based systems in your home, then the switch can easily be made to allow you to use a blend of all these fuels. You instantly reduce your heating bill and carbon footprint.

Tax Incentives


The good thing about using green technology, especially if you are a business owner, is that you get tax incentives for doing so. All you need to do is avoid the use of fossil fuels, and you will be able to give your brand a complete makeover. The same applies to your home as well. If you ever decide to put it on the market, the presence of a green technology system will ensure that it commands a better market value.

Home Insulation


Even the amount of green energy you use can be controlled. If you insulate your home well, especially with R rated insulation systems, you can ensure not only security but also balanced temperatures in the house, and this will reduce your dependency on air-conditioning. Having programmable thermostats installed in your homes too can make a world of difference to the way energy is consumed. This way you can regulate the intensity of usage of power.

Changing small things in the house -- using CFLs, taking all your gadgets off standby mode or shutting them down instead of leaving them on indefinitely, especially when you go to bed at night. All of these moves can help you contribute to the preservation of the environment.

Author Bio
William Stevens is a writer who creates informative articles in relation to technology. In this article, he explains a few benefits of going green and aims to encourage further study through online electrical engineering colleges.





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