We’d like to think that most of the recent changes you’ve seen here at Gear Patrol have been decidedly for the better. As a part of our continued evolution, you can expect to see us expand our coverage of all things green. In fact, that coverage starts right now. So, in honor of St. Patrick’s Day, here’s our 10 simple suggestions to keep it green.
In case you didn’t know, Gear Patrol is staffed by a bunch of regular Joes, you know… real guys. We are neither industrial Robber Barons nor are we full-on eco crusaders. It’s safe to say that, like you, we’re just making our way in the world today (yes, it takes everything we’ve got) and trying to be good stewards of the resources around us by keeping it green. More importantly, we appreciate the good feeling that comes from making an Earth-conscious choice, as well as the extra green that smart decisions leave in your wallet.
It is in this spirit that we present to you some humble suggestions on how pretty much every guy can keep it green. In keeping with GP traditions, we’ll have plenty of great green gadgets and innovations to share in the coming weeks and months. You’ll even see informational and editorial posts designed to expand your thinking and equip you to become the envy of the compost crowd. Heck, we might even explain why we insist on italicizing the word green. Today, though, we’re going to keep it simple and do our best to make Captain Planet (and his beloved Planeteers) proud. This list is certainly not exhaustive, and the suggestions are listed in no particular order.
1. Seal It Up.
Use foam, caulk, and weather stripping to seal any gaps or cracks around your domicile. Typical problem areas include around windows and doors, at baseboards, and around your crib’s exterior. Any opportunity for air to flow unchecked in and out of your home can take a huge toll on your utility consumption, not to mention your comfort.
2. Check Your Tires.
Regularly check and adjust your tire pressure. Let’s face it, all we who drive motor vehicle are a part of the problem, to some degree. Limit your carbon liabilities by matching up your tires’ pressure to the specs recommended for your ride. Not only will it improve your fuel efficiency, but it will make your drive safer, it’s idiot-proof car maintenance, and its President Obama approved.
3. Tame The Water Heater.
Don’t let your water heater run amok. Backing down your water heater’s thermostat from 140 degrees to 120, can net savings of up to 10% on your total energy usage. If you are concerned about running out of hot water too quickly, make the changes incrementally until you hit the wall (of cold water) sooner than you’d like. Also, installing a insulation jacket is a cheap and easy way to mitigate the heat loss associated with the tank-type heaters found in most dwellings.
4. Paper vs. Plastic?
Neither. Go Reusable. According to ReusableBags.com, somewhere between 500 billion and one trillion plastic bags are consumed worldwide, every year. This staggering rate of consumption works out to just over one million bags per minute and is rivaled only by the frequency of a man’s fixation on sex. So take our word for it, do the right thing. Chances are good that the checkout girl might even look up from her copy of US Weekly and take note.
5. Going Green? Go Manual.
Make the switch to a manual lawnmower. Unless you’ve got some serious acreage, consider taking a whack at your grass with a manual model. You’ll save on gas, work up a good sweat, and improve your chances of winning your neighborhood’s beautification award. After all, if it’s good enough for your greenskeeper, then it’s sure as heck good enough for you.
10 Simple Suggestions To Keep It Green (6-10) continued on next page