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Apr 27

The Best Green Replacements For All Your Hobbies

Going green is a lifestyle decision and is not something you can do overnight. In other words, it takes a lot more than just replacing a few light bulbs to be completely ‘green’, and actually many of the activities you wouldn’t even necessarily associate with going green have a green element to them.

                A perfect example of this is your hobbies. When you’re switching off and getting your downtime you probably don’t really consider the impact you’re having on the environment. In reality though, this is a time that many of us will use a lot of energy that could easily be saved. Here, we will look at some of the hobbies that use the most energy and create the most waste and then suggest some alternative activities you can enjoy that will be kinder to the environment.

Examples Greener Hobbies:

The Activity: Watching TV

Watching TV is something that most of us will spend a lot of our evenings doing and that seems harmless enough. In fact though, watching TV of course means that you’re using energy as the television itself is an electronic device.  If you’re watching a DVD, then that energy overhead will be even higher as you’ll have multiple devices on.

The Alternative: Reading

flea-market-93960_640Reading books on the other hand won’t require any energy at all and is also considerably better for self-development (not to mention your eyes). Reading on a Kindle is acceptable as the e-ink display uses hardly any power, and you’ll be sparing trees (albeit very indirectly).

The Activity: Going to the Gym

How is going to the gym bad for the environment you ask? Well of course this is hardly the worst thing you could do, but there are definite negative repercussions. For one, going to the gym is likely to mean driving to the gym so that’s going to have an impact on the environment. At the same time though, if you are using machines like the treadmill etc. then you’ll be using a fair bit of power to run those too.

The Alternative: Training at Home or Outdoors

You don’t need to be in the gym though to get a good workout, you can just as easily do it at home with dumbbells, with a bench and with a pull up bar. And when it comes to CV this can be done very easily by just going for a run outside.

The Activity: Computer Games

Like watching a DVD, playing computer games will require you to power both a TV and an additional device. Again, it’s hardly going to end the world there and then but it does all add up.

The Alternative: Sports or Board Games

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Instead then, why not do your health a big favour by playing some good old fashioned sports with friends? Instead of playing Fifa online, why not meet up and actually play football together?

If you’d rather stay in where it’s warm though then there’s an easy solution which is to just play a board game be that Monopoly or Ludo.

The Activity: Surfing the Web

Surfing the web means using yet another device as well as the power going through your broadband router. Like TV and games consoles the amount of energy being used here isn’t huge, but the point is that all these hobbies involve a lot of power and aren’t great for the planet.

The Alternative: Magazines and Chatting

If you use the internet in your spare time AKA not for work, then you will probably be doing one of two things: chatting to friends or reading news and articles. Both these things can be satisfactorily replaced with offline activities though, those being to read magazines and to chat to friends on the phone. Or even better than chatting on the phone, why not just meet up somewhere for a (sustainable) coffee?

The Activity: Listening to Music

Listening to music is a fairly normal thing for most of us to do when we get in form work, normally while we surf the web or clean the house. While you do that though, you’ll once again be using energy to power your CD player or iPod.

The Alternative: Playing

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Something that makes music that doesn’t require any power though is the piano or the guitar. I’m not suggesting you never listen to a CD again, but every now and then it might make a fun alternative.

                These are all specific examples of ways you can save energy, but there are many green hobbies that you can enjoy that will make a better alternative to watching TV. Whether you get into painting, woodwork or sewing – any of these things will take time away from your electronic devices without your even noticing it and can do wonders for the planet in the long term as a result. Want to go green? Find a new hobby!

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Gemma Hastings enjoys blogging about clean energy and ways to incorporate energy efficient options in daily life. She works for SolarPanelGrants.org, a company offering customers options to switch from conventional to solar energy usage; you can visit their website to read more about them.