What can I do locally to help the environment?

As consumers, we depend on the use of oil. Now is the time to break that dependency and take a look at alternatives. These difficult economic times may not make purchasing solar panels for your home the most cost effective thing to do; however, there are ways to work toward using renewable energies. Here are a few ideas:

  • Experiment with your own lifestyle! Take a day, a week, or a month to share with family or friends when you decide to use limited or no energy. Bikes, candles, only battery power. See what it's like. And know that for that day, you have helped the environment by consuming less.
  • Want to buy locally but don’t always have the option? Or do you regularly ship packages? Consider minimizing the carbon footprint for your online purchases and shipments.
  • Some studies estimate the internet will be producing 20 percent of the world's greenhouse gases by 2020. If you have a website, look into solar-powered hosting services.
  • Junk the junk mail. The average person receives 11 pieces of junk mail per week, or 560 pieces a year (and the average person wastes 70 hours a year dealing with junk mail). That amounts to 4.5 million tons of junk mail each year with most going to the landfill unopened! This totals approximately 100 million trees being cut down.
  • Who doesn’t love the smell of fresh laundry that was dried outside? Dryers can produce up to 1400 pounds of CO2 in one year alone. Use a clothesline when the weather is nice. (And if you live in an area where you can wear flipflops – do! Fewer socks to dry!)
  • You can also, stay informed on issues by becoming an Ocean Futures Society member for free!