Go green for April

Earth Day is April 22nd. Here are some astonishing facts about our environment:

  • If everyone in the world consumed like the average U.S. citizen, we would need at least four times more resources. (Purchasing Power: World Watch Paper 166)
  • The energy saved by recycling one aluminum can will operate a TV set for three hours. (ThinkQuest, 2006)
  • We are consuming the earth's resources 20 percent faster than they can be sustained. (Scripps Howard News Service, 2006)
  • Every ton of recycled paper saves 380 gallons of oil. (ThinkQuest, 2006)
  • Every 20 minutes, the world adds another 3,500 human lives but loses one or more entire species of animal or plant life – at least 27,000 species per year. (verpopulation.org, 2006)

Though these facts are grim, there are things we can do at work and at home to decrease energy use and preserve our resources.

At work

  • Print double-sided whenever possible to conserve paper.
  • Recycle office products whenever you can.
  • Start a carpool, or walk, bike or use mass transit to commute.
  • Take the stairs instead of the elevator to conserve energy (and get a little extra exercise!).
  • Turn off computer monitors, printers, copy machines and the lights when they are not being used.
  • Use environmentally friendly cleaning supplies to help reduce pollution.

At home

  • Look for the WaterSense label (www.epa.gov/watersense) to use water-efficient products and programs.
  • Reduce waste by purchasing permanent items instead of disposable items.
  • Reuse and recycle everything you can.
  • Save energy by turning off appliances and lights when not in use.
  • Use the Energy Star program (www.energystar.gov) using energy-efficient products.

Find more ideas to take action and take the Earth Day quiz on EarthDay.org.

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