Garrett's Going Green
Mayor Fiandt would like to offer these suggestions to our community, in an effort to Go Green
Use Cloth bags when shopping – This will reduce waste of plastic and paper bags.
Switch to Compact Fluorescent Bulbs – This can reduce energy usage from lighting in your home up to 40%. Unplug unused items in your home.
Compost – Food scraps, yard waste and other organic material that decomposes in a land fill produces methane gas. This gas is over 20% more potent than carbon dioxide.
Wash clothes in warm or cold water – You can reduce your carbon emissions up to 500 pounds per year by not using hot water, the reduction is even greater when air drying laundry!
Buy Appliances with Energy star Label – This will also save you up to 40% of usage each year.
Walk or Ride your bike
Dispose of oil and other chemicals properly
Evaluate your family’s usage – You more than likely do some of these suggestions already. There are “personal emissions” calculators online that may show you how to achieve the most reductions.
Additional Ideas to cool your home in the summer months.
One way to reduce the need for cooling during the hot summer months is by keeping the sun out of the home. Start as far away from the house as possible with shade trees, trellises covered with vines, or awnings. Pay special attention to east and west facing windows. The sun is low in the sky as it rises and sets allowing its rays to penetrate deep inside the home and making it difficult to keep out. When allowed to enter the home through windows, this solar radiation can cause the inside temperature to rise as much as 20°F on a hot day.
The most effective way to shade the home’s east and west windows and walls is to plant tall trees or plant vines on horizontal trellises. Be sure to use deciduous trees and vines because their leaves provide shade in summer, but they drop them in winter when the solar gain is a benefit.
Awnings wider than the windows can provide shade, but even they are ineffective when the sun is very low in the sky and can enter the home right under the awnings. To further protect the home, whenever possible, locate porches and garages on east and west walls for additional shading. Most homes have roof overhangs that sufficiently shade the windows.
When replacing windows, it is preferable to look for high-performance windows. They look perfectly clear, yet block out a large percentage of unwanted solar radiation.
Inside the home, solar gain through windows can be reduced by installing drapes with light-colored linings or blinds that can reflect sunlight. Vertical blinds are particularly effective on east- and west-facing windows. Also, choosing lighter colors for roofs and walls to reflect sunlight will reduce heat gain.