Sunday, April 20, 2008

What's write today is all about going green

There is a new book out called Go Green, Live Rich by David Bach. When the first push to start recycling paper at home and in the work place occurred in the early 1990s, my family in lived in a community that immediately jumped on the band wagon and it took little time for it to seem like everyone was recycling - virtually overnight.

As it turns out - recycling has continued to be practiced at almost all levels from the one person apartment renter to business, government, schools and universities. We now have an entire generation that has grown up seeing those recycle bins in their homes, schools and workplaces. And, it continues to make a difference in the environment.

Bach details 50 ways you can take going green up a notch from paper recycling. He starts by telling you how to determine your impact on the environment or your carbon footprint. From there he provides easy and doable ways to go green in one area or all areas of your life.

For many people, changing vehicles to smaller and hybrid is not as feasible as changing health and beauty products to organic or buying green based household cleaning products. Turns out that we can now get green mortgages and green credit cards.

There are many simple and unobtrusive ways to go green. My own personal business is doing a few things such as recycling paper, buying as many post-consumer paper products as we can afford and as they are needed, we have changed out almost all of the light bulbs to energy-efficient models, we give away used business and reference books (actually we have done this for years and years - we very seldom throw out a book) and we give away our old computer equipment to those who may not be able to afford new computer equipment.

We also recycle magazines, paper bags, newspapers and of course printer paper. Also, we try to print on both sides of the paper as often as possibly. I am also trying to write and publish pieces about going green as much as I can as well as reading as much as I can about going green. We also turn our computers off at the end of the day - all but the server which has recently been replaced with an energy-efficient version.

On a personal level, we buy organic products for our dogs and we do buy organic fruits and vegetables when available where we shop. We read most of our newspapers online but those we do buy such as the local Sunday paper or our subscription to the Wall Street Journal, we recycle.

The point of all this is that all of us can pick at least one area of our lives to go green and it will make an positive impact. Bach reports that Americans spend $45 billion a year on electricity for things they are not using. He also reports that by replacing one light bulb - CO2 emissions can be reduced by 67 pounds over the life of the light bulb. Or, how about this, you can save up to $798 in gasoline each year by keeping your car tires properly inflated, your car properly tuned up and not carrying around extra weight in your car.

Save the air - save on fuel needs - save money. This going green is looking better all the time.