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Rise to the Challenge!

Here Are 10 Things You Can Do To Make a Difference!

Please remember, that each individual has an impact on his or her environment. Choices that we make in our day-to-day lives can affect global warming pollution.

Please make responsible choices.

1. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle and Rot

Change to fluorescent light bulbs, recycle materials and compost your food and yard scraps. Find creative ways to reduce day-to-day waste. Switch to weekend-only newspapers, stop excessive junk mail by removing your name from mailing lists, and set up to pay your bills on line.

2. Save energy at home

Turn down your water heater and switch lights/equipment off (computer, television etc) when you leave a room. On a warm day, hang your clothes to dry naturally rather than using a tumble dryer. Consider home insulation for walls, pipes and water tanks and revisit your landscaping practices. Use drought tolerant species, plant shade trees for energy savings, and know that trees also store ("sequester") carbon and can remove 50 pounds of carbon in a year.

3. Be water wise (inside and out)

Inside: Use the plug in your tub /sink and don't 'leave water running unnecessarily. Install a low flow shower head and place a brick in the toilet's cistern.

Outside: Collect rainwater, use it for watering plants at their roots and water in the early evening. Avoid using sprinklers that can use up to 500 gallons of water an hour!

4. Shop smart

Make a shopping list, combine trips, bring cloth bags, and shop/buy products locally. Select recycled goods and goods with minimum packaging. Buy organic, environmentally friendly cleaning supplies and support businesses that are reducing their global warming pollution. Consider planting your own fruits/vegetables and have an egg-laying pet chicken.

5. Drive smart

Cut out one 20-mile trip out each week to reduce your global warming pollution by 1,200 pounds a year. Use public transport, share car journeys, and walk/bike your children to school. Choose a fuel-efficient environmentally friendly car and "stay tuned”. Properly inflated tires, spark plugs, oxygen sensors, air filters, hoses, and belts are a few that can save up to 165 gallons of gas per year. Telecommute. If all commuters worked from home just one day a week, we could save 5.85 billion gallons of oil and cut over 143 billion pounds of carbon dioxide each year.

6. Buy energy efficient electronics and appliances

Replace your old inefficient furnace, heater and appliances with Energy Star equipment. And buy computers, copiers, printers, fax machines and other home office equipment that carry the Energy Star label.

7. Support renewable energy

Speak to your energy provider about purchasing renewable sources. If you live in a state where you can choose your electricity supplier, pick a company that generates at least half its power from wind, solar energy and other clean sources. Even if you don't have the option to select a supplier, you may be able to support renewable energy through an option on your electricity bill.

8. Determine-- and then erase--- your carbon footprint

Try this easy to use "calculator” to help you estimate how much carbon dioxide you contribute to the atmosphere, set yourself a goal to reduce it by 20%, and then consider buying clean energy "certificates” to offset the global warming pollution associated with your everyday activities. Become "climate neutral."

9. Volunteer and educate your community and neighbors

Pass on these tips and ask three of your friends to take ten of these actions. Educate your community with a flyer about how it can cut global warming pollution, start a local action group, join a city commission, or run for a local election!

10. Encourage government to take action.

Raise your voice. Contact your Mayor, City Council, Senators and Representatives and let them know that you are concerned about global warming's impact and you want them to support legislation that significantly addresses the problem. Write a letter to the editor of the local paper with your perspective on global warming and ask decision makers to: