26 Jul HOW TO STAY ECO-CONSCIOUS THIS WINTER
Most South Africans enjoy the warmer months (who can blame them? :)) but with a couple of months left of the cold we thought we’d share some of our tips to stay green and eco-conscious (if you haven’t been already) for the rest of chilly months.
Electricity costs soar, many of us just want to snuggle by a fire, binge watch a series whilst snacking on all the treats!
No more! We’re highlighting some top tips to help you energize the mid-winter slump, hopefully save some money but definitely show how to do so as eco-consciously as possible!
LED lights are a lot more cost effective, in the long run but it can be pricey to do it all at once. We suggest replacing as your current bulb “go” and / or replace incandescent bulbs in the high-use areas such as the kitchen.
Make use of natural light as much as possible.
Unfortunately but realistically, security – motion-sensor lights will alert you to movement without having to leave a light on all night.
If you’re lucky enough to have a fireplace try burning smarter. Start fires with dry kindling; this gets the fire going more quickly and therefore minimize emissions.
Dry wood is key – not only does it burn more efficiently it also offers a cleaner burn.
Hot and bright flames are less polluting that smoldering fires.
A closed-combustion fireplace is energy efficient but initial cost can be hefty (worth it in the long run). Do your research.
No one likes a draught, that cool air on the back of your neck or over the tops of your knees not to mention how much cooler it can make an area.
Ensure that your windows are airtight, a great tip is to close all your windows, light a stick of incense and hold it next to the window and see if the smoke is being blown.
Upgrading your insulation is a fantastic option BUT a big job. On a smaller scale, you can try products like this from Takealot:
Curtains are also great help to keep the heat in and reduce the effect of draughts
We hear your “but it’s winter” BUT still try and walk where and when you can, it will help keep you fit, the fresh air will do you good (it always does) and no need to use the car.
As unappealing as it may seem, keep the compost heap going! For the very rain and blustery days, keep a large bucket or basket outside your door where you can pop the day’s waste into and then take it down to the compost heap when the weather improves.
- Check the temperature setting on your geyser, even a few degrees less will make a difference but to prevent bacterial growth keep it above 50 degrees Celsius.
- Area rugs – for areas in your house that are tiled or feel a bit chilly, put a seasonal area rug down to help warm the area up, easy and fairly cost effective.
- Keep unused rooms closed
- Wear extra layers and keep blankets handy, when it’s just a bit nippy, resist the urge to turn on the heater/s and simply layer up.
- We like this saying “eat the pantry”. Use the extra time indoors to use up any food items that you are unlikely to end up using. This way, you get fed and you’re using items that you have already paid for = less waste. Win!
LASTLY, if you have the means (or possibly from your electricity savings) buy a bed for the homeless.
Just imagine being outside throughout winter!
The wonderful Haven Night Shelter has made it super-duper easy!
You can buy a bed: https://www.haven.org.za/buyabed
Or a printable passport to hand out: https://www.quicket.co.za/events/70751-the-haven-passport/#/
Wishing you a wonderful weekend!