Actions to Address Climate Change

These are suggested actions for friends to take to help address climate change. Some of these actions will be harder for some friends to take than for others. Friends will have to decide for themselves which actions to take, and it is not expected that all friends should take all of these suggestions. However, the status quo cannot be maintained. We must all make sacrifices in order to prevent the catastrophic possibilities we are facing.

Many of these recommendations are to buy certain things. The idea is not for friends to go out and buy all of those things right now. The idea is to consider buying those things when you would normally buy something of that type. With all of your consumption, consider how you can consume in a way that is less harmful to the world we have been given.

  • Use less heat and air conditioning.
    • Turn it down, and turn it off at night.
    • Invest in a programmable thermostat.
    • Keep air filters clean.
    • Invest in energy savings, such as insulation, weather stripping, double glazed windows.
    • Close the blinds during the day in the summer, and open them during the winter.
    • Open your windows at night during the summer. Run the fan early in the morning to bring in cool air.
  • Drive less, drive smart.
    • Over 50 mph, you use less gas by driving slower, so drive the speed limit or minimum safe speed.
    • Save trips and do them at the same time. This will conserve miles driven.
    • Perform regular maintenance and make sure your tires are properly inflated.
    • Remove your luggage rack when not in use, and clean non-essentials out of your car.
    • Get a fuel efficient car or a motorcycle.
    • Carpool, ride a bike, walk, or use public transportation. Start a carpool if one is not available.
    • Telecommute and/or move somewhere that will reduce your need to travel.
    • Fly less. Consider a staycation.
  • Buy less, buy smart.
    • Buy energy efficient appliances.
    • Buy recycled paper products.
    • Buy for quality, not for price. Quality goods last longer, thus requiring less consumption.
    • Look for products with less packaging. Buy economy sizes to reduce packaging per pound.
    • Repair things instead of junking them and buying new. Buy things that can be repaired.
    • Buy used.
    • Save packaging to use in place of buying storage containers.
    • Get reusable water bottles, reusable shopping bags, reusable lunch boxes, …
    • Share more. Consider donating things rather than discarding them.
  • Use less electricity.
    • Get CFL or LED light bulbs. Turn them off when they are not in use.
    • Use energy saving settings on appliances.
    • Always turn off your electronics and appliances when you are done with them.
    • Unplug chargers for electronics when they are not in use. Power strips with switches can make this easy.
    • Choose to get renewable energy from your provider if possible. Install solar panels.
    • Defrost old refrigerators frequently.
    • Hang dry clothes.
    • Check out Energy.gov.
    • Move your fridge away from your stove. Get a smaller fridge.
    • Get a home energy audit, or do it yourself.
  • Use less (hot) water.
    • Install low flow faucets and shower heads. Take quick showers.
    • Put a water bottle in your toilet tank or get a low flush toilet.
    • Set your water heater to 120º.
    • Get an insulation blanket for you water heater. Your utility may subsidize this. Be careful with this, and follow your manufacturer’s recommendations.
    • Insulate the first six feet of pipes from the water heater.
    • Drain a quart from your water heater tank every season to remove sediment. Check your manufacturer’s recommendations before doing this.
    • Save up to do full loads of dishes and clothes. Use cold water settings.
  • Plant a tree. Other plants will sequester carbon as well, but trees also provide shade and a wind break to reduce the energy needed to heat and cool your home.
  • Compost, but only if you can do it properly.
  • Stay informed, and talk to friends, meetings, schools, your place of work, politicians, …
  • Eat less meat or no meat at all. Eat fresh, seasonal foods instead of frozen foods.
  • Invest in green corporations, both those making green products and those working on energy efficiency. Encourage your meeting to invest in green companies,