We live on a beautiful planet and want to protect it.
We need your help and involvement.
Ten Ways to Get Involved
1) Of course, recycle. Have two receptacles, one for trash, one for recycling. It’s not hard to have 50-50, equal quantities of trash and recycling. It’s part of an involvement mind-set, and costs little or nothing.
2) Change your incandescent lights to compact fluorescents—be careful to dispose of them carefully as they contain toxic mercury.
3) Better yet. Change incandescent bulbs or compact fluorescents to LEDs. No mercury, lasts longer, and becoming cheaper by the year. Prices are coming down drastically.
4) Have a home energy audit with blower-door test. Cost, about $250-$350. Follow through with recommendations, best bang for the buck first.
5) Insulate your crawl space. Cold air under floors can cost a bunch.
6) Write a Letter to the Editor to your local or nearby city newspaper urging the above measures. Using the information in essays in The Climate Times, advocate for clean energy and healthy forests.
7) Exchange any gas heating system, including propane, with a high-efficiency electric heat pump. This saves $ on heating bills and prevents methane leakage when extracting the natural gas, especially bad with shale/fracking gas, which is currently 56% of our country’s natural gas supply. Gas is not clean! It is worse in greenhouse gases than coal for electric power plants.
8) Have a solar system installed on your property. Almost all homes have one roof line that will produce substantial solar power. Tree shade can wipe out solar potential. A 5kW system, a typical system for homes, can produce up to half your electrical needs in a relatively small to medium-sized house—less than 2000 square feet. Cost depends on your state’s solar incentives and regulations. There is currently a 30% off-the-top federal tax credit, and prices for solar systems are still dropping steeply (about 8-10%/year). Cost of such a system with no state incentives is about net, $10,000 after the 30% federal tax credit.
9) Join a nearby clean energy group. The Climate Times is one such group. We are much more than this on-line newspaper. About 75% of our economic effort goes to stop utilities like Duke Energy of Charlotte form continuing to burn fossil fuels while making solar systems much harder for NC citizens to purchase. We also work to protect forests, which, along with oceans, are our planet’s main absorber of greenhouse gases.
10) When you need a new car, consider an electric car. My Chevy Volt allows me to do essentially gasoline-free in-town driving. And gas kicks in after about 40 miles of any trip over that length, so it can be all-purpose, the one car you need for short and long trips. A fully electric car—no gas ever—can work fine if you have another car for trips. Better still, take public transportation like bus or train for short or long trips.