10 Easy Ways to Go Green

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And save money in the New Year

One of my New Year’s Resolutions is to find ways make my home greener and lower my carbon footprint…

  1. Install a programmable thermostat – Dialing down your thermostat by 10° to 15° for 8 hours, can potentially save you  5% to 15% a year in heating costs – as reported by the U.S Department of Energy.
  2. Use the wind to cool your home – Let’s look at some math on staying cooler this coming summer: An air conditioner costs roughly 14¢ an hour to run. A larger central-air system can cost about 36¢ an hour. If you run a ceiling fan instead, the cost is only about 1¢ for every three hours it’s on.
  3. Weatherize your home – Sealing up your home properly makes a difference. Just insulating your attic can save you 10 to 50% on your heating bill.
  4. Convert from incandescent lights to LED – This simple task of changing over to LED can save you up to $3,260 over 23 years, especially as the costs of LED has gone significantly down in a couple of years.
  5. Replace inefficient appliances with ENERGY STAR®models – If your appliances are more than 15 years old – it might make sense to replace them with ENERGY STAR® These models can cost more up front, but they often pay for themselves in a short time. These appliances often use 10 to 50% less energy than older models.
  6. Wash your dishes and cloths less often – Now, I am not proposing that you wear dirty cloths or not wash your dishes – but be sure to run these appliances with full loads. If you fit as many dishes in your dishwasher as possible you will potentially save about $40 a year, and additionally, save the earth 100 pounds of carbon dioxide.
  7. Use LED Holiday Lights – Did you know that Christmas lights that use incandescent lights use a lot of electricity – each string of 100 lights can use up to 45 watts of power. A string of 200 LED lights uses only about 12 watts of power.
  8. Get an energy audit – In Massachusetts, you can get a free energy audit from Mass Save – where you will learn about your home’s current energy use. You will also get a custom list of energy-saving recommendations for your home.
  9. Choose your energy provider, it’s your choice – States across the country have deregulated electricity, giving you the ability to choose your provider – which allow you to choose more green energy and save money.
  10. Install Solar on your roof – Current federal tax credits and leasing programs have now made it possible for almost everyone with a good roof to have solar installed.

Going green is important to me, especially when I think of my children:

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Please share with me how you are going green this year:

By day, Rachelle, working mother of two, serves as an education advocate and career advisor for MassEdCO. By night, Rachelle provided career consulting and works to promote green energy. When Rachelle is not writing her blog, advising her students, or coaching her clients, she enjoys camping and going to the theater with her two children.

Follow Rachelle on Twitter at @RLappinen and follow her blog at https://solutionsbyrachelle.wordpress.com/

 

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About Rachelle Lappinen

​Rachelle Lappinen is a Career and Academic Consultant and a Green Energy Ambassador. Currently, Rachelle serves as an education advocate for MassEdco working with high school students on college and career navigation. Rachelle also consults working with MIT on a research program, researching the effects of long-term unemployment on the middle class and developing best practices to help this population. Rachelle has worked at Mount Wachusett Community College, the YWCA and Becker College as a Career Development Counselor. Before becoming entering the field of workforce development, Rachelle spent over 10 years working as an insurance underwriter. Throughout her coaching and volunteer experiences, Rachelle has been noted for her determination and persistence to help those in need of career guidance. As a volunteer, Rachelle is actively involved with the non-profit organizations such as the Boys and Girls Club of Leominster and Fitchburg and the Center for Women and Enterprises. Prior to entering the coaching world, Rachelle was a senior group insurance underwriter for Unum, and sales representative for Prudential Financial. She actively involved with the Career Counselors Consortium and is a member of the Career Resource Rachelle M. Lappinen, MBA, GCDF, CPRW
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