Tips to Help Reduce Your Carbon Footprint

   By SheSpeaksTeam  Apr 10, 2012

April 22nd is Earth Day! The day marks the anniversary of what many consider to be the birth of the modern day environmental movement in 1970. Earth Day was founded by Gaylord Nelson, who came up with the idea after he witnessed the ravages of the 1969 oil spill in Santa Barbara, California. Check out for more information on the history of Earth Day as well as information on how to become involved with Earth Day events in your area.

To help prepare for Earth Day, we're sharing some great environmentally friendly tips that will help you save the environment, and money, in the process.
To be entered to win one of our giveaway prizes this week, simply post a comment below sharing your tips on how to cut down on your carbon footprint!  Have you influenced your friends and family to make environmentally responsible choices? We'd love to hear about that too!
Using the Thermostat Less Saves Energy: Resist the temptation to turn up the thermostat when the weather is chilly. Instead, put on a sweater or wrap yourself in a blanket and keep the thermostat at the energy-efficient temperature of 68 degrees F. Likewise, use a fan instead of air conditioning when the weather is hot. A fan uses less energy, produces no fluorocarbons, and even requires less energy to manufacture.
LED bulbsChange Your Light Bulbs to Save Money and Light Your Home: Switching out your old light bulbs and replacing them with eco-friendly ones can save you a ton of money. LED bulbs shine for about 60,000 hours and Compact Fluorescent bulbs for about 10,000 hours. Compare that to your traditional incandescent bulb, which only lasts 1,500 hours.
Unplug Your Electronics at Night: Though you may not realize it, electronics like TVs, DVD players, and computers use energy even when turned off. Unplug them when you sleep to reduce your energy use and your monthly bill. Another tip: your phone only takes about two hours to completely recharge, so don’t leave it plugged in and charging overnight.
save waterSave as Much Water as You Can: The number one source of wasted water is keeping the faucet running while you’re brushing your teeth. Did you know that the average bathroom faucet runs at 2 gallons of water per minute? Turn off the water when brushing to save in the easiest way possible. Another tip: if you’re waiting for the water to heat up when running a bath or shower, put a bucket underneath to catch the water and use it to water plants around the house or for cleaning.
Wash Your Clothes in Cold Water: Did you know that when doing laundry, heating water could account for up to 80% of the energy used per wash load in the U.S.? You can Take A Load Off the energy grid, your wallet, and the environment by making the simple change of washing your clothes in cold water. You can make the promise to switch to washing in cold water on P&G's Future Friendly Facebook page and you'll be entered to win a High Efficiency Washer and Dryer and a one-year supply of Tide Coldwater! Enter once per day to increase your chances of winning. A new winner will be picked each week through May 13th. It’s all part of P&G’s effort to convert 70% of all wash loads worldwide to cold by 2020.
Learn more about saving energy and helping the environment at our Tide Coldwater #takealoadoff Twitter Party taking place on April 12th at 9PM ET. If you haven’t already, RSVP to be eligible to win the door prize.
Now we’d like to hear from you! What are your eco-friendly tips and tricks? Do you plan on doing something special to celebrate Earth Day this year? To be entered to win one of our giveaway prizes this week, simply POST A COMMENT BELOW sharing your tips on how to cut down on your carbon footprint! Comments must be submitted by 6pm EST on April 16th, 2012. Good luck!

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The contest starts April 10th, 2012 and ends April 16th, 2012 at 6pm EST. Must be a US resident. No purchase necessary. 



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teacupalchemist by teacupalchemist | SOUTHFIELD, MI
Apr 20, 2012

I use rainwater to water my plants instead of hose water.

hbmomma by hbmomma | HUNTINGTN BCH, CA
Apr 18, 2012

We have a pool which uses up lots of energy, so we run the pool pump during the non-peak times (10am -6pm) in order so save on energy cost and to help cut down on energy usage during the peak times.

midwestgirl by midwestgirl | COLUMBUS, OH
Apr 17, 2012

The community where I live has a curbside recycling program, however, there is not one available at my office. I started keeping bins available for paper, and once a week I lug it home to my curbside. Hopefully lightening my footprint by burning some extra calories, and helping to improve my carbon footprint as well.

5amigos by 5amigos | GRANITEVILLE, SC
Apr 16, 2012

Use websites like to trade books!

pattysh by pattysh | GAS CITY, IN
Apr 16, 2012

As for the plastic grocery bags, alot of the big box stores and grocery stores have a container to recyle them. I reuse mine by putting them inside smaller trash containers and for taking lunch to work.

mandysdc7 by mandysdc7 | Queensbury, NY
Apr 15, 2012

I reuse those plastic bags that you are not suppose to get from the grocery store. I use them in my garbage can in the kitchen instead of buying plastic garbage bags. Yes they are small, but I LIKE to take my garbage out every night. Who wants yucky garbage in the house. And what good is it to bring your own reusable bags and yet BUY plastic garbage can liners?

saltpep by saltpep | ELGIN, IL
Apr 15, 2012

I reuse envelopes that come in the mail as scratch paper while I am on the computer or taking telephone notes or even grocery list paper. I also reuse the water I used (cooled)after boiling eggs for my plants.

vtangelgirl by vtangelgirl | Fairfax, VT
Apr 15, 2012

I do pretty much every tip listed by Shespeaks. I enrolled in programs to load coupons onto my grocery store loyalty cards. No need to use paper at all anymore! This is pretty new, and I love it. Use old t-shirts/worn out towels for rags. It saves trees and money. Don't waste food. 25% of all food purchased in the US is thrown away. Use the leftovers for lunches at work, OR choose to cook things that yield leftovers easily used in other dishes. It will save you money, reduce demands for production and stop food from being dumped in landfills. Buy local if at all possible. Things that don't have to be shipped hundreds of miles are much more eco friendly. Ditch individual water bottles. Get reusable ones.

mintmom by mintmom | Louisville, KY
Apr 14, 2012

I use old t-shirts to make reusable grocery bags, old washclothes and socks for dusting rags, and I use cloth napkins and dishtowels instead of paper towels. I've gotten my extended family to save all their cans so that I can cash them at the recycling center. I use the extra money to help pay for my dogs medication.

GG_shopper by GG_shopper | GRAHAM, NC
Apr 14, 2012

1. Coffee grounds in the garden - not the trash - it enriches the soil 2. Use and reuse and reuse paper in the printer. You can print a single coupon on 1/3 sheet of paper. Print, trim (neatly), save for next time the remainder of paper. 3 Cold water wash for clothes 4. Egg shells in a jar of water, soak awhile, use to water & fertilize plants. Later put egg shells in garden. 5. Cut open the "bags" that your boxed cereals are in (inside the box), flatten it, wipe the cereal dust off. Save to wrap stuff in - sandwiches, etc. 6. Reuse your bread bags. I shake all the crumbs out and then flatten them. I then roll them into a tight roll to store (like a roll of bags in a box). These are great to reuse. There's more...... sometime we'll all get it right.

believeangls by believeangls | CLERMONT, FL
Apr 14, 2012

I've been using reusable shopping bags for a couple years now; turn off water when brushing teeth; replaced regular light bulbs with the CFLs a few years ago; I recycle newspaper, magazines, cardboard, glass, plastic and aluminum (did you know you can put used aluminum foil in with the recycling? Even the wrapper from a Hershey's Kiss is enough to recycle!)

linzsnoop by linzsnoop | CROTON HDSN, NY
Apr 14, 2012

i use the Huggies plastic wipes containers as planters! I try not to buy them, but sometimes they cost less than the refills in the store. So...I am teaching my son about planting and recycling at the same time. I let him decorate his new planters with stickers, and then we place them on our deck. It helps add character to our family garden.

acohen by acohen | Cumming, GA
Apr 14, 2012

Instead of throwing out potato chip bags or snack bags (the ones that are shiny on the inside), cut them at the bottom seam and iron them slowly on an old bath towel and watch them shrink and get a really cool texture. Then cut them up into pieces and make a collage. It's a fun way to recycle because you can create a beautiful piece of artwork!

Bennevidal by Bennevidal | PHOENIX, AZ
Apr 14, 2012

Whenever I wash my curtains, drapes,and valances I don't dry them! I just remove them promptly from the washer and put them back on their rods! Makes the house smell great!

stef42678 by stef42678 | LAS VEGAS, NV
Apr 14, 2012

I always bring my own shopping bags to the store and I encourage my friends to do the same! I also setup recycling bins in my condo community area to encourage everyone to recycle and do their part to save the earth.