It'll be great as a New Year resolution; for two simple reasons. One - these are just small, minimal everyday lifestyle changes and require no great effort. And two - it's "our" environment and "our' future. Now if you're convinced, follow these seven simple steps suggested by Vanderbilt researchers that will certainly help you to drastically reduce your energy use and carbon emission.
According to Vanderbilt environmental law professor and director of the Climate Change Research Network, Michael Vandenbergh these seven "low hanging fruit" actions have the potential to achieve large reductions at less than half the cost.
1 Shutting the engine off while sitting in a carpool lane or parking lot can help save nearly 8 percent of gas wasted while idling.
2 Changing the dirty air filter can improve gas mileage, lengthen engine life and result in substantial CO2 emissions savings.
3 Keeping the tires at the proper inflation can improve vehicle gas mileage by an average of 3.3 percent.
4 Avoid keeping the power electronics at stand-by mode. Some of the large-screen TV's can use as much power in standby mode as a refrigerator.
5 Heat and cooling is the largest component of household CO2 emissions. Research suggests changing your air conditioning and heat by two degrees to reduce emissions.
6 Reducing CO2 emissions associated with hot water heating is one of the easiest actions to accomplish because most water heaters are automatically set at 20 degrees hotter than people need. It can reduce CO2 emissions as much as 1,466 pounds per year and save the homeowner about 20 dollars to 40 dollars a year.
7 Use compact fluorescent light bulbs for it has the potential to reduce CO2 emissions by roughly 50 to 120 million tons per year and save consumers money.