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Carbon County residents to 'go green' for winter

Recycling computer parts is a portion of the sustainable world program.

By C.J. MCMANUS
Sun Advocate community editor

With the projection of a rise in both natural gas and electricity costs, according to chief executive officers from both Rocky Mountain Power and Questar, Carbon residents are reminded that there are many small projects that can be done around the house to conserve on both energy and their monthly bills.

As the debate over climate change due to human influence rages on, local residents can be assured that "going green" in spite of its political ramifications can and will save green-backs for Carbon energy users. Energy is not the only issue facing those in eastern Utah, as the economy continues to stand on shaky ground there are also other tips that can be used to help get through a tough economic period.

The World Institutes vision for a sustainable world has provided the following steps that will help reduce the amount of money going out every month in utilities:

•Save energy to save money, they recommend starting by setting the thermostat just a few degrees lower in the winter and a few degrees higher in the summer, which can make an enormous difference in a the heating and cooling bill.

•Install compact fluorescent light bulbs when the older incandescent bulbs burn out.

•Unplug appliances when they are not in use or use a "smart power strip" that senses when appliances are off and cuts phantom or vampire energy use.

•Wash clothes in cold water because as much as 85 percent of the energy used in a washing machine is used by heating the water.

•Use a rack or clothesline to save energy used during machine drying.

If a dryer is a must, local residents should consider using dryer balls to cute drying time.

•Take shorter showers to lower water and heater use.

•Install a low-flow shower head.

A low-flow shower head can repay the its initial investment cost within a month.

•Make sure that all faucets within the house are aerated.

•Plant drought-tolerant native plants in the garden.

Local residents may ALSO consider xeriscaping their yards.

•Try walking or biking to work.

Walking or riding a bicycle will save on gas and has the added benefit of improving a person's cardiovascular activity.

•Lobby local governments to increase spending on sidewalks and bike lanes.

•Use a filter to purify tap water rather than spending cash to purchase bottled water. .

•Consider buying secondhand from local or national suppliers.

•Check out garage sales, thrift stores and consignment shops for clothing and everyday items.

•Borrow from libraries instead of buying personal books and movies.

•Share power tools and other appliances with neighbors and friends.

•Buy food in bulk.

Purchasing food in a bulk manner saves in cost sand in packaging.

•Buy and wear clothing items that do not need to be dry cleaned.

•Invest in high-quality, long lasting products that need to be replaced less frequently.

•Keep cellular phones, computers and other electronic devices as long as possible.

•Donate or recycle the phones responsibly as "E-waste" contains mercury and other toxics and is a growing environmental problem.

•Ask local government officials to set up electronics recycling and hazardous waste collection events.

•Make cleaning supplies.

"You can make very effective, non-toxic cleaning supplies whenever you need them. All you need are a few simple ingredients like baking soda, vinegar, lemon and soap," comments the site, at www.worldwatch.org. "Doing so saves money, time and packaging."




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