How to Preserve the Environment and Your Wallet at the Same Time

It’s unfortunate that a majority of the general public assumes going green is directly correlated with spending more money when it’s untrue. People seem to think that going green takes a lot of effort and cash, when in fact it’s both easy and cost-effective. By tweaking your lifestyle a bit – both at home and work – you can diminish your environmental footprint and keep more money in your wallet at the same time. 

Going Green at Home 

Before telling your coworkers how wasteful they are and that they need a little more ‘green’ in their lives, you should probably start with a self-analysis. How are you doing on the home front? Here are a few ways you can go green, save money, and be happier in your personal life:

  • Automate your thermostat. Programmable thermostats are extremely popular right now – and rightly so. They can save you as much as 15 percent on heating and cooling costs throughout the year by simply keeping your temperature at the right level at all times. Experts suggest keeping your heat on 68 during the cold months (even cooler at night, if possible) and 78 in the summer months. Not only can these parameters save you hundreds of dollars per year, but they also allow you to significantly reduce your energy usage.
  • Wash with cold water. Did you know that as much as 85 percent of the energy used to power your washing machine goes to heating the water? When possible, wash with cold water. Additionally, air drying your clothes (or at least partially air drying prior to putting in the dryer) can reduce your energy use and provide savings. 
  • Save gas. This one falls somewhere in between going green at home and being sustainable at work; however, regardless of which heading it goes under, saving gas is an important issue. Not only does it reduce your carbon footprint, but it can mean significant savings. You simply need to adopt responsible habits and make an effort to save on gas.

Going Green at Work 

Whether you’re the boss or a single employee, implementing responsible, eco-friendly practices at work can save money and impact your local community in major ways. 

  • Incorporate natural lighting. If you have the luxury of working in an office with windows, one of the easiest things you can do is open the blinds and utilize the warm natural lighting. Even cutting back on artificial lighting for a few hours per day can produce significant savings.
  • Bring a water bottle. The truth is that most bottled water is of the same quality as average tap water. Instead of wasting your money on disposable water bottles, bring a reusable bottle to work and fill it up at the water fountain or water cooler. You’ll save a few bucks each week and save the environment from unnecessary waste.
  • Eat lunch from your desk. Packing your own lunch has many benefits. You don’t have to drive to pick up food, you save time and get off work earlier, and it’s cheaper. That’s a win-win situation for your wallet and the environment.

Can you begin implementing any of these tips into your daily routines? You’ll feel good about doing your part to reduce waste and save energy, and you’ll save some money along the way.

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Drew Hendricks is a tech, social media and environmental addict. He's written for many major publishers such as National Geographic and Technorati.

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