1. Use Fluorescent Bulbs. Replace conventional incandescent light bulbs with compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs). They cost a little more, but last up to 10 times longer, use two-thirds less energy and give off 70 percent less heat.
  2. Look for the Energy Star Label. Energy Star-qualified refrigerators use about half as much energy as refrigerators made before 1993.
  3. Get Unplugged. Many home electronics still consume energy even when they are turned off. Many devices with a “standby mode” will continue to use power. Also, chargers and power adapters continue to draw power from the wall socket even if the device is not attached. Unplug these devices or use a power strip to turn off multiple units, when they aren’t being used to make sure that you aren’t wasting energy.
  4. Double-Up on Windows. Replacing old single-pane windows with double pane windows helps reduce heat loss in winter and heat gain in the summer.
  5. Turn Down the Thermostat. Lowering you thermostat by just one degree can reduce costs by about four percent.
  6. Sustainable Floors. Cork flooring not only looks great, but it’s also natural insulator. So when you look into purchasing flooring, consider using bamboo, cork or another sustainable material.
  7. Earth-Friendly Decks. A lot of deck material comes from tropical hardwoods. These woods look great and stand up to the elements for a very long time.
  8. Low-Flow Faucets. Low-flow water fixtures such as showerheads, faucets and toilets reduce water consumption and water heating costs by as much as 50 percent.
  9. Buy Renewable Energy. Check with your local utility company and see if you can purchase renewable energy.
  10. Recycle! After you replace all those inefficient, windows and fixtures, make sure you recycle all that metal and glass. By recycling half of your household waste, you can save 2,400 pounds of carbon dioxide annually. Find more information about programs in your area by visiting www.recycle.com.
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