Home   |  Issues  |  The Daily Star Home | Volume 5, Issue 21, Tuesday, May 25, 2010




Plant a notion

‘GOING GREEN' has been 'in' for quite some time now but a lot of us have avoided it thinking it requires some daunting transition from contemporary times to the Middle Ages with no electricity and no water. Contrary to that popular belief, 'going green' doesn't require sweeping life changes but in fact, promotes healthier alternatives that we are all already well aware of. With electricity supplies at record lows these days, these tips certainly require repeating now more than ever.

Shedding some light on light bulbs
Looking for a way to do your part in saving the world but can't bear to give up your Volkswagen? Well, you're in luck. Try replacing just three 60-watt incandescent light bulbs in your house with energy saving fluorescent ones instead. According to the Union of Concerned Scientists, if every household did so, it would be equivalent to taking 3.5 million cars off the road.

Approximately 90 percent of the power consumed by an incandescent light bulb is emitted as heat, rather than as visible light. In other words, by using an incandescent light bulb, you are unnecessarily generating heat in the smouldering summer, not to mention doing a world of damage to the environment.

Try the environmentally friendlier alternative: the energy saving compact fluorescent light bulbs. Because they use a fraction of the energy, your electricity bill will become a little easier on the eye. They are more summer friendly as well because they don't generate as much heat as the incandescent bulbs.

Water, water everywhere…or not
You wake up in the morning, trudge to the bathroom and turn on the tap… and nothing happens.

You angrily ask to know what is happening and you get the answer you were dreading: there's no water. No water to wash your face, no water to clean the dishes, no water to take a shower. Just no water!

It's no secret that we live in a country with acute water supply crisis. What makes this situation much worse is how terribly we mismanage the water we do have.

There are a number of ways to save water and they all start with you.

It's every environmentalist's favourite pet peeve: Leaving the water running while brushing one's teeth. You can easily conserve up to five gallons of water per day. All it takes is to reach over and turn off the running tap. It helps to teach your children and other members of your family to do the same.

Shorten your unnecessarily long morning showers by a minute or two and you can save up to 150 gallons of water per month. If you want to go a bit further, ban bath-times now and then and switch to showering only. Running a bath takes almost twice as much water!

Verify that your home is leak-free by closely monitoring your water bills. You can use your bills and water meters to find any hidden leaks in and outside the house.

Every time you use your toilet flush, it takes up five to seven gallons of water, so stop stuffing your toilet with your tissue papers and cotton buds. Your wastebasket exists for a reason; utilise it.

There is also much talk about dual flush toilets, which are hotly being introduced to countries with water crisis. It may not be the silver key to fame but it is a small price to pay for a further four billion years of the Earth.

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