Most of us know that when we step outside of our doors we have a lot of dangers that face us. We do everything we can in order to protect ourselves from harm when we leave our houses. Those of us who are environmentally conscious will also make sure we are not doing anything that will hurt it. But how many of us look to the very place we live as one of the biggest threats to the environment?
The fact is our homes are not the safe havens we would like to believe they are. Most of our homes are just loaded with things that are extremely harmful to the environment. Then you have some of us who do not even think about the harmful things we do, such as pouring bad waste products into the sink or toilet. Some of us do not think about the energy we consume and how this is going to affect us long term. A lot of us use too much water without thinking of the consequences.
Well I am here to tell you that you have to change the way you think and the way you live. The best way to start this is by looking at your home and the way you consume various products and resources. Making the needed changes is one of the best ways you can start helping the environment.
Looking to your kitchen first and foremost
Right now in your kitchen there are several products you use that are very harmful to the environment. You probably do not give them much though, but you need to start making some changes. First take a look at the type of appliances you use. Now you might have some pretty big appliances that have not been updated in a while. These appliances use up a lot of energy, and they cost you money as well. The high energy uses old appliances use drives up your energy bill.
So the first thing you need to do is make some updates. If you have a big, old microwave, then take it to a waste disposal site and get an Energy Star rated one. These are going to use far less electricity. The same goes with your oven and other kitchen appliances that are outdated. Depending on where you live you might actually be able to get a tax break for making these updates, but this does not apply in all states.
The use of dish-washing detergents and other harmful chemicals
Right now your kitchen probably has a surplus of dish-washing detergents that contain harmful substances such as phosphates and other bad chemicals. Well what do you think happens when these things flow down your pipe into the water drain? How about the way you wash your dishes? Do you use a dishwasher? Do you rinse your dishes rather than scraping them? All this does is use a lot more water than what you need to. If you are in an area where water is scare, then this is also hurting you, because it is driving up your water bill.
How about the cooking oils you use? Most of us do not give these a second thought. We will sometimes pour these down the drain, the toilet, or just pour then into regular garbage bins rather than separating them. All this does is it contaminates the environment and it also leads to polluted water supplies. All of this is causes by what you do in your home. Now imagine this effect multiplied by millions.
What you want to do in the case of cooking oils is put them into tightly sealed, unbreakable containers before putting them in the trash. You can also get into contact with your municipal water and waste treatment facility so you can learn if there is a drop off collection service for these types of things.
Get rid of mercury from your home
Right now your home probably has a lot of items inside of it that contain the harmful material mercury. These are very harmful to the environment. Getting rid of mercury from your home is easy. All you have to do is purchase items that do not have mercury in them. There are drop off facilities near you where you can get rid of these items, such as old thermometers.
Getting household cleaning supplies that are less harmful
The cleaning materials you use to clean you home are some of the most harmful to the environment. The thing is they are cheap, and you can get a whole lot of it. Well if you are serious about saving the environment, then look for some alternatives that are not as hazardous. Are these going to cost you more, yes and no? Like for instance, did you know that you can wipe down your counters with lemon juice diluted with water?
You can go online and find all sorts of alternatives you can use to clean your home that are not going to be a danger to the environment. And most of these are not going to be as pricey as you think.
So to sum it all up, the cleaning items you use in your home, outdated appliances you use in your kitchen, items filled with mercury, washing detergents and cooking oils are all things in your house that really harm the environment. I know it might seem like it is going to be tough to make the needed changes. So start one thing at a time until you have made the overhaul. Start with updating energy wasting appliances by getting ones with the Energy Star label on them. If you cannot afford them new consider buying them used.
Next, focus on using less water and cut back on the amount of washing detergent you use. Next, get rid of items containing mercury in your house. Lastly, find alternatives to some of the more commonly used cleaning items in your house. For instance, instead of using bleach to wash white laundry, use vinegar and apple cider. This works really well. You can find plenty of other solutions if you look. And they actually work better than the harmful products most of the time.
Joseph Crawford is a freelance writer who loves to discuss nature, environmental issues and harmful effects of pollution. He also works for several businesses including Rossdoor among many others.
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