Forty fab ideas for eco-friendly Mumbai
It's been forty years since the United Nations Conference on Human Environment that works for the development of global environment projects, was formed. Every year, June 5 is celebrated as World Environment Day to mark this event. As part of a two-part series to observe World Environment Day, The Guide has compiled forty handy tips and tweaks to help make our city a cleaner, greener space to live in
1 Release all electrical plugs when not in use. It reduces the heat that arises from an electronic device that contributes to global warming.
2 Change your light bulbs to compact fluorescent lights (CFLs).
3 Turn off lights and fans when you leave a room.
4 Say no to plastic bags. Opt for paper bags instead.
6 Don’t keep the ignition on while sitting idle in the car.
7 Use public transport. Or try cycling to reach your destination. It’s also great exercise.
8 Buy recycled and organic products.
9 Learn how to plant a tree. Your work’s not done just after planting a sapling, they need some TLC to grow tall.
10 Segregate waste into wet and dry sections.
11 Try vermicomposting in your compound.
12 Try kitchen gardening or window-sill gardening.
13 Reuse envelopes and use both sides of paper; set your printer to this option as well.
14 Carry lunch to work. You save fuel that the delivery guy would use. Avoid using disposable plastic containers.
15 Save water. Don’t let a tap running in your home or outside. Fix leaks so there is less wastage.
16 Defrost your fridge and freezer regularly, and avoid putting hot food in the freezer.
17 Don’t open your fridge door for too long, as it takes energy to cool down again.
18Cover pots and pans when cooking. They will boil a lot quicker.
19 Run your washing machine or dishwasher with full loads.
20 Keep appliances in good working condition. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to make sure they last longer. If they last longer they won’t end up trash sooner than needed.
21 Buy products with less packaging. Request the shopkeeper to not give you additional packaging for the product.
22 When you purchase TVs, CD players, DVD players, and computers, buy energy saving models. Look for the energy saving star sticker on your appliances; the more coloured, better they are at saving power.
23 Your phones and other electronic appliances can be recycled. So, when you want to throw them away, look for a recycling unit and hand it over to them.
24 Instead of buying greeting cards for occasions, send ecards. Or make creative gifts at home.
25 Use ceiling fans instead of air-conditioners as much as possible.
26 Buy rechargeable batteries.
27 For paper that has been printed on one side, cut these up and use them as post- it notes.
28 For smaller details, make notes instead of typing and printing them down. A little writing will never hurt anyone.
29 Instead of throwing away remaining stored drinking water, use it to mop floors or water plants.
30 Use dual flush systems (half and full flush) in your loo. This way, it remains clean and you don’t waste water too.
31 Follow community green practices. Propagate green causes such as waste management, water harvesting in your residential societies.
32 Take the stairs rather than the elevator.
33 Walk short distances instead of taking a cab.
34 LED is the technology of the future, try and buy LED bulbs or strips for lighting your home.
35 Shop intelligently. Read packet details to understand if products including cleaners, deodorants, sprays that you buy are eco-friendly. PVC shoes and bags might be in style but are not eco-friendly.
36 For soap dispensers and cleaners buy re-fillable big bottles.
37 Use cloth rags instead of paper towels when possible. Tear tissues into halves. You can reduce your usage of tissues by half by adopting this method.
38 Carry your own bags while shopping; thus you don’t need to use paper bags and can save paper instead.
39 Make cloth bags from old bed sheets. If you don’t need too many, distribute these among your neighbours.
40 Opt for thick curtains for the sunniest room at home. This would bring less sunlight in and keep the room cooler thereby reducing use of the air-conditioner.