I wouldn’t consider myself in the environmentalist camp but neither would I consider myself in the rape-and-pillage the earth camp. I think it makes sense to care for the earth and all that is on it and in it as a matter of stewardship, health, economics, and so on and I enjoy the complexity and diversity of our world. I also enjoy technology and reading about ways in which we can innovate to “be green.”
I’m not entirely sure what the official definition for “being green” is – and I don’t feel like looking up how others have defined it, so let me explain what I mean by being green:
Balancing one’s life in such a manner as minimizes negative impact on the world, maximizes financial savings, and does not significantly disrupt one’s lifestyle.
In other words, I think being green should be easy, affordable, and enjoyable….I’ll stay out of the hotter and more controversial topics at this juncture.
- Electricity Generating Stationary Bike – This is an idea that is more here for fun than practical energy saving. While it is cool to save energy while riding a bike, we aren’t going to save enough to significantly reduce our electric bills. Still, this is one project I’d like to undertake sometime in the near future just for the fun of it.
- Power Usage Monitors and Controls – This involves plugging appliances into small receptacles that in turn plug into the actual power outlet. These small devices communicate wirelessly and allow for tracking and controlling the electrical utilization. For example – you can turn off the tv while at work, keep the microwave from draining energy unnecessarily, and so on.
- Suntubes – These are tubes one places in one’s ceiling that funnel light in from outside. They allow for reduced utilization of artificial lighting.
- Energy Audit – Usually these are available for free from your electrical company. A representative will review your home and make recommendations on how you can reduce energy usage and bills.
- Weather Stripping – This can help ensure that your home keeps in the warm (or cool) air you want.
- Czap, Nick. “Stationary bike designed to create electricity.” SFGate, 2008.
- Bakke, David. “6 Energy-Saving Home Improvements That Pay Off.” Mint, 2011.