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Conservation Tips

A list of ways that you can conserve energy and resources on a day-to-day basis.

Go Vegetarian...part-time!

Plan to eat at least two vegetarian meals this week.  Carbon emissions from the livestock industry contribute about 18 % of total global emissions.

Switch to green energy

Ask your energy supplier about their renewable energy options.  If they don't have any, consider switching to a supplier who does.

Hop a train

If there is a trip you're taking in the next couple of months, look into the option of taking a train rather than driving or flying.

Reflect on your lifestyle

Set aside some time to reflect on how your lifestyle impacts the planet, asking God what you can do to restore your relationship with the world and with your neighbors (local or global).

Turn your water heater down

If your water is too hot to handle when you fill the sink or run a bath, your hot water thermostat is probably too high.  Try setting it at 140 F (60 C).

Eat by candlelight

How many rooms do you light in the evenings?  Turn out the lights and enjoy the ambiance of a candlelit dinner!

Cook for free

Stove tops and ovens take a while to cool, so turn them off earlier so your food finishes cooking without using extra energy.

Easy on the gas

Avoid excess idling and hard acceleration - the more revs you use, the more fuel you're burning, so ease up!

Sustainable furnishings

When you need to buy furniture next, choose recycled, second-hand or sustainable furniture items to reduce the energy used when products are manufactured and transported.  It is estimated that deforestation currently contributes around 18% of annual global greenhouse gas emissions.

Reduce food miles

Buy seasonal and local fruit and vegetables.  To find out what's in season, click here.  If you are buying goods from overseas, buy Fairtrade whenever possible.

Limescale reduces efficiency

Fill your tea kettle with one-third vinegar and two-thirds water and soak overnight.  Rinse, then boil the kettle, and discard the water.  Then enjoy some tea with a friend!

Less packaging

Try to buy food with the least, or most recyclable, packaging, and avoid plastic bags.

Make do and mend

Do you have clothes you could wear for longer if you gave them a little TLC?  Spend some time doing old-fashioned mending, or ask a friend for help.

Have a technology fast

Try a day with no TV, no iPod, no computer, and even no cell phone.  Why not set aside a technology fast day each month?  If you need to use a computer or phone for work, think of something you could do without today.  Spend time reflecting on your use of technology - how does it impact your life and the lives of those around you?  How could you use it more productively?

Swap shop

Arrange a swapping party with friends.  Exchange clothes, DVDs, CDs, jewelery, and bags so everyone gets something new without a trip to the shops.

Recycle

Super recycler at home?  How is your office, school, or church?  Make a commitment to set up better recycling schemes today and petition your local council for more recycling facilities.

Block unused fireplaces

Stuff scrunched up newspaper up unused fireplaces to stop heat escaping through the chimney - a good method as it still allows a little air to circulate.

Travel light and aerodynamic

Remove roof racks and unnecessary weight from your car.

Efficient home

Save energy and money by choosing energy-efficient home improvements and appliances when you need them.

Try skinny food

But we don't mean calories!  Choosing thin pasta and cutting meat and vegetables smaller will mean they'll cook faster and use less energy.

Reuse and recycle cell phones

Snub your next cell phone upgrade and keep your current one.  Recycle any unused phones.

Get composting

Food waste sent to landfill sites emits methane, whereas home composting is methane-free because air is involved.  Check out www.recyclenow.com/home_composting for advice on composting.  Compost is rich and fertile and helps plants to grow, flower and bear fruit.  Yet it used to be garbage.  It's a reminder of our own transformation as God has made us new creations.

Resist "Buy one get one free" offers

Too often, "buy one get one free" offers tempt us to purchase things we don't use.  40% of the food we throw away is fruits and vegetables.  You could try shopping online to prevent those impulse purchases.

Green thumbs

Growing your own food reduces energy use.  Plant some vegetables or herbs today.  If you don't have a garden, you could herbs in pots on the windowsill or share land with others.

Focus on the world

Check the news headlines and pray for the people behind one news story that impacts the environment or a developing country.  Why not try to do this more often, committing to issues and situations to God as soon as you read them?

Lower-energy cooking

Use a microwave or slow cooker to cook your meal today - they're much more energy-efficient than conventional ovens.

Put a plug in it

When you wash up, do dishes, get a drink, or brush your teeth, don't leave the water running longer than you need to.  Change your water-wasting habits to conserve water and energy.

Radical recycling

Make a renewed commitment to recycle, even things that the city doesn't take from your door, such as appliances and furniture.  Consider purchasing items with minimal or no packaging and items made of recycled and recyclable material.

Avoid short car journeys

A cold engine uses twice as much fuel, so walk, bike, or get the bus instead of using unnecessary fuel.

Spring clean

Have a clear-out of things you really don't need and take them to a charity shop today.  Rediscover what you do have, to help you avoid buying things you don't need.

Pray for Renewal

Thank God that one day the earth will be renewed to reflect his glory completely.  Pray that the church will awaken globally to its responsibility to fight injustice and care for and renew the earth because it is God's creation, and in order to protect poor people.

Bulk cook

Cook double portions.  Bulk cook and freeze extra portions to reheat when you need them.

Turn your boss, pastor, or school green

If you think they're going to be hard to persuade, emphasize the money they'll save by reducing energy use!

Check your flush

Do you always need to flush the toilet?  Or perhaps get a water-saving device for your toilet tank.  For other water-saving tips, check out this website.  http://familyfinances.suite101.com/article.cfm/water_saving_devices

Walk or bike it

If you're planning a sightseeing trip, walking or biking around will save carbon and enable you to see more.

Have a dairy-free day

The global livestock sector generates more carbon than all forms of transport, so cutting down on dairy will slash your carbon footprint.  Climate change impacts agriculture - affecting soil, water provision, temperatures and harvest patterns, and causing food and income insecurity across the world.  This situation is likely to get worse as demand for food rises and production yields and quality decrease.

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