Tag Archives: Compost

Apply Reduce, Reuse, Recycle While Going Green In The Kitchen

 

Going green in the kitchen encompasses everything from what you eat to how you cook it  There are tons of things you can do in your kitchen that will help lessen your impact on the environment. From using a water saving faucet, to energy efficient appliances to cleaning with non-toxic cleaners, going green in the kitchen can be great for the environment as well as for your budget.

 

 

REDUCE

One little thing you can do is reduce your use of paper towels.  The average family uses several rolls of paper towels a week but you can reduce your usage by keeping some cloth towels handy in the kitchen and use those for wiping your hands,  spills and other uses that would normally call for a paper towel. I like micro fiber cloths  You’ll save money on paper towels and there will be less of them in the landfill which, in turn, helps the environment  Also, the less paper towels that are manufactured, the less pollution in the air from those manufacturing plants.

Use microfiber cloths to clean up spills. They are also great to clean glass, stainless steel, and stove tops, microwaves etc. By doing this you reserve the use of paper towels for draining bacon and other fried foods. Use cloth napkins, avoid paper, Styrofoam and other convenience items Reduce by Using rags for items like scratch cover polish and just throw them away. Also use rags for other chores like cleaning cabinets, walls , woodwork and floors. These can be washed and reused as long as there is any use left in them.

REUSE

Any Item can be reused including clothes, rags, furniture, Glass jars,  Just think a minute and you will add a lot to the list.  I save paper from the printer like that last page they just have to add on at the end with one sentence on it. I cut them in half 5 1/2 x 8 and clip a stack with one of those big black clips to form a pad. why buy steno pads when this work just as well. You reduce the need to make more paper. You reuse  the paper at hand , and when it is no longer needed you recycle the paper you wrote on.

 

Did you realize that some types of cooking are more energy efficient than others?  While many cooks love a gas stove, the fact is that the newer model electric stoves are more energy efficient  Not only that, but if you opt for a toaster oven or microwave instead of using your big oven, you can drastically reduce the energy needed for cooking. Another method of cooking that greatly reduces the amount of energy being used are convection ovens. Many microwaves have convection oven features in them  use it whenever possible as it cooks more evenly and saves a great deal of energy.

Reduce the cost of Energy with LED Bulbs

I save quite a bit by putting dimmer capable Led bulbs in the fan light. You can dim them down to use as a night light. The electric company gives you 5 Led bulbs if you bring incandescent bulbs in to their scheduled day, I t is held approximately once a month. In our town it is held at the senior center.  My favorite place to by bulbs is  Batteries & bulbs and more. I  bought some dimmable bulbs there last week and the electric company  pays them a rebate. On one package of bulbs I saved &7.00.

REFUSE

Another thing you can do in the kitchen to help the environment is buy local whenever you can. While this might seem like a small thing, transporting food is actually a big drag on the environment. Flying bananas into upstate New York from the tropics can be costly in terms of air pollution.  Not to mention that foods from the grocery store can be loaded with pesticides which damage the environment and your health with GMO’s  Your local growers probably don’t put so much junk on their crops.  Plus, it’s nice to support the farmers in your own community. We have a farm market on the town Green every Wednesday & Sunday. Seniors can get a book of coupons at the Sr. Center. Each coupon is worth $3.00. We also have  produce stand at one of the gas stations and another stand at a nursery in a nearby town.  Just google for farm markets in your area.

 

Using reusable cloth grocery bags, reusing jars I use canning jars for leftovers  This also saves because you can see what is in the jar and it doesn’t get forgotten to be lost. Composting organic materials are great ways to reduce waste.  You can compost your kitchen scraps, paper and even cardboard.  This will make great fodder for your garden and does double duty as it acts as an organic fertilizer saving you from buying fertilizer which saves you money and ensures that harmful chemicals don’t leach into the environment from commercial fertilizers you might have had to purchase.

Note: Some paper is needed to have a proper mix.

RECYCLE

Possibly the most important thing you can do to be greener in the kitchen is to recycle. Make sure you get a good handle on all the plastic and glass materials you use that can be recycled.  Check the rules at your landfill as to what has to be separated out and buy yourself some bins to help you keep things separate. My goal is to get enough people recycling so much that they pick u[ recycling every week and trash twice a month.

 

Lastly, you want to keep the environment in mind when you clean. Cleaners full of chemicals can be bad for the environment and the fumes from these can be harmful to the health of yourself and your family.  There are plenty of natural things you can use for cleaning like vinegar, baking soda and tea tree oil that will help keep your kitchen sparkling without harming you or the environment.

I recommend Melaleuca products. I have used them exclusively since 2005

http://www.melaleuca.com/susankelly

Save Some Green While Going Green

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What could be better than helping out the environment?  Why, saving some money while you are helping out the environment, of course!

Of course, most everyone wants to lower their carbon footprint and help the environment be healthier but if you can save money doing it, then you have the best of both worlds.  Luckily, there are many ways to go green and save some green at the same time.  Here are 5 things you can do that will help boost your bank account and the environment:

  1. Buy Second Hand – most people don’t think of buying second hand stuff as being environmentally consciences but when you buy something second hand it helps to keep that item from ending up in a landfill.  Not only that but buying second hand can save you a bundle!  Plus buying something used doesn’t mean you have to settle for something that is broken or damaged – there are plenty of brand new items waiting for you to pick them up.  Great places to shop for second hand goods include eBay, Craigslist, yard sales, flea markets and Consignment stores. Even designers buy second hand and may just have it reupholstered in a smart print. Also check a site called Free Cycle.org On this site you can get whatever you need for Free you just have to pick it up. i once saw a Gazabo on this site for free.
  2. Energy Efficient Lighting – Swapping your incandescent bulbs with compact fluorescent lighting might cost a bit at first, but it can save you a bundle in the long run in energy costs.  In fact, fluorescent lights use 1/3 the energy that incandescent do and, since lighting is typically one of the largest energy uses in any home, this could save you 25% or more on your bill.  Not only that but compact fluorescent lights last 10 times longer so you won’t have to buy them nearly as often.  Want even more savings?  Then seek out the new LED lighting – they are more efficient and the lighting itself is much better than the fluorescent bulbs..
  3. Save On Paper Towels – If you’re anything like me, you probably use a ton of paper towels in the kitchen.  They’re great for wiping up spills, drying off  your hands and putting food on but what do you think happens with them once you are don?  Right – they end up in the landfill!  You can reduce your costs for paper towels and lighten the load on the landfills by using cloth kitchen towels instead.  Invest in a bunch of them and make sure they are handing for wiping up.  You’ll be amazed at how few paper towels you really need! I use the microfiber cloths instead of paper towels they are washable and reusable. I have a stack in the kitchen and bathroom and with my cleaning supplies to be handy I then wash them without fabric softener and hang them out to dry. Microfiber Cloth Multi Colored Microfiber Towels Thumb Lightweight Microfiber Glass Towel 2
  4. Eat More Veggies – Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know that eating more fruits and vegetables and less meat is better for your health, but did you realize that it’s also better for the environment?  Yes, it’s true, raising cattle takes a huge toll on the environment.  Plus beef costs more than vegetables so why not help your health and the environment by replacing a few of your meaty meals with vegetarian choices?
  5. Conserve Water – There are many options in faucets today that will help you conserve water which, of course help the environment and saves you on your water bill. You can get low flow faucets and smart faucets that will automatically shut off after a certain amount of time or sense when something is under it – turn the water on and then sense when nothing is under it and turn the water off. I read an article on saving water and it said to always use the dishwasher as that takes 15 gals of water while washing dishes by hand takes 30 gals. Well I have a problem there we do not have a dishwasher and we really have no room for one. When I do dishes I use one of two methods. First is to put about 4 inches of soapy water in the sink and wash all the plates and put them in the other sink. Then stop and rinse those and put in the drainer. The same with glasses, cause dishes etc until done. The other method is to use a brush with a well for dish washing liquid in it and just a little water to clean the dishes and then rinse. Both work quite well. The other suggestion was to not use the disposal since it requires a lot of water but to compost vegetable peelings etc.  Just keep in mind you need to put cut up news paper between layers of compost to avoid over production of methane gases.
  6. Emeril Lagasse once said to tell your Thanksgiving guest that you were starting a new tradition composting scraps and providing a large platter for them to use for that purpose. Hello Emeril our grandparents and great grandparents always composted as a habit to keep the environment clean. I remember my grandmother composting the watermelon peals and seeds after a family reunion. She dug a hole in the asparagus garden and composted them there. The next year she did not have to buy the watermelon it was growing in the asparagus bed. That was ideal since the asparagus is  a spring crop. I also thought it was ironic that there are only two natural sources of Diuretics asparagus and watermelon.  I personally make watermelon pickles also known as candied watermelon rind, so you only have the peels and seeds to compost.

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