Stopping in quickly. Starting to really get into my new job and I really like Houston. It’s nothing like DC, which can be good. A few ways we have gone about making Texas just a little bit more green;
-We haven’t been able to recycle for the last two months, we found a place right by our new place. So that has made me feel better.
-The power companies are completely deregulated, which makes it a bit more expensive then up north. However, we are now use 100% renewable energy.
– We have always used reusable grocery bags, but it seems to be rare here. I hope as more people see us use them, others will pick it up.
– We avoid all the places with styrofoam down here (which is nearly everywhere) when we do eat fast-food (admittedly, this is mostly me. Sorry guys..)
– We both have cars that get very good gas mileage. My 2011 Elantra Touring gets 26mpg combined (city/ highway) and Lesleh’s 2004 Chevy Malibu gets about the same. I wish we could use more public transportation, but it is limited where we live 🙁
– Our thermostat is set at 76 degrees. The highest we can set it. We use the ceiling fans when we’re in the room, and circulation fans to keep our place evenly cooled. Additionally, we close vents in the spare room we rarely use and keep the door closed. Also keeping closet doors and other unused spaces will reduce your cooling demand.
– We have new kitchen appliances and use environmentally friendly light bulbs. We use drying racks to dry clothes rather than running the cloths dryer any more than we need to!
– Also another huge energy saver, unplug appliances and electronics you’re not using. This had an added benefit here too. With all the thunder storms you don’t want all of your electronics constantly plugged in, not only does this drain power, it also exposes them to the risk of a power surge. We have split our electronics into two power surge strips. One for the daily things we use; TV, Cable Box, Etc. The second for occasionally used items; Xbox, Wii, DVD player, sound system, etc. We leave the second strip off, and only turn those electronics on when we need to use them. Having them all connected to one strip makes power them up very easy, with no need to unplug!
So, even in a state as red as Texas, in the energy-wasting capital of Houston. We are able to keep some of our northern lifestyle in tact and keep more ethical and moral obligations to this earth!