We all make new year resolutions, right? Do we make Environment Day resolutions? Nah, we do not do it as it is not as fun as new year resolutions! However, Environment Day is that time of the year to think about a few choices that we can opt for to keep our environment clean and sustainable. A lot has been said and written about how to conserve energy and use energy efficiently to minimally impact nature. So, this write up is not about things like switch off lights when you leave a room or that sort of items; I have put together a dozen suggestions that I hope you will find interesting and easy to implement.
- Always work from home! By doing so, you are saving a lot of energy. Office lighting are energy guzzlers -is it not ridiculous that we use lighting even on a bright sunny day? If you need to come to office because managers being manager insist that you come to office, at least leave office early, say by 2.00 PM after your lunch. You can potentially beat the traffic and thus burn less fuel. Additionally, office lights can be switched off earlier than usual.
- Work under a common lighting, such as streetlight, if you have work in the evenings. Make use of your wifi to work outside your home. By doing so, you do not have to pay electricity bill as government pays for streetlight, and additionally you conserve energy and money by not burning light and fan at home.
- Sleep on roof tops, except in rainy season. Mother nature is kind and in a non-rainy season, it is cooler to sleep outside. By doing so, you not only develop an interest in astronomy (not astrology!) but also save energy by not running air conditioners or fans. This option is applicable more to folks from tropical countries, than others.
- Use a stove that automatically turns off when there is no pan or pot placed on it. I hear such stoves are already in the market. You should try one.
- Create a roof garden. If you are the chosen one to have a room on the top floor, you know how it feels to be in a oven! By having a roof garden, not only is top floor cooler than normal, but you get to eat some healthy vegetables plus have some ready material for your child’s Botany project!
- Befriend the newspaper delivery boy. By doing so, you do not have to buy any newspaper as you can either ready your neighbor’s newspaper before it is delivered or you get to read the newspaper while he delivers it to the community. At least a few branches of the tree are saved!
- Throw your garbage in front of your home. Within a couple of days, you will realize how much garbage you generate and would naturally take steps to reduce garbage generation. You being a innovative person will find a way to convert the organic garbage to compost and use it for your roof garden.
- Eat raw vegetables at least once daily. Not only will this keep you healthy, but will help you spend more time with your spouse as there would be no cooking time.
- Shorter the better. Look fashionable with shorter hair! It is common sense that you need less water to bathe if you have shorter hair, and it is fashionable to have shorter hair, right? You are a better judge on applying this paradigm for clothes.
- Have regular candle light dinners. Wouldn’t your spouse love it? For now, it is romantic; two, no lights are required; three, any accidents in kitchen can be passed on as a special dish.
- Play with your kids in you have one, or play with your neighbor’s kids. It is good to play with kids not only because it keeps you healthy, but also conserves energy; both you and kids cannot watch TV or play video games when you are playing, right?
- Go on a trek every weekend to a place like Savandurga. For the uninitiated, Savandurga is a hill 60 km west of Bangalore; the hill is considered to be among the largest monolith hills in Asia. The place is a trekkers paradise and most of the treks happen only early in the morning or at night times under the gaze of full moon light. Not only will the city be less populated over the weekends, but you will conserve energy by not lighting up or using fans in your home over the weekend. Be sure to use the local transport as a warm to your trekking expedition!
The root cause of environment degradation is our lifestyles; our life styles have adversely affected both us and the environment. Energy conservation happens if we do not believe in conserving our energy — let us burn the loads of calorie energy that we all have to conserve nature’s energy!