Category Archives: Curb Your Carbon Month

Extend Your Vegetable Garden Growing Season With A Cold Frame

Growing your own organic produce at home reduces carbon in multiple ways–plants sequester carbon, and having produce in your own yard eliminates the need for food to travel, so no greenhouse gases from transportation!  To extend the growing season into the colder months, you can build a cold frame, which is basically a DIY mini greenhouse using a salvaged window, some scrap lumber, and some extra pavers or bricks. There are many free DIY plans for how to design and build cold frames online. If you use a search engine to search for “how to build a cold frame” you will find several options.

Curb Your Carbon Month, October, 2015

ColorBrightonGreen.org is sponsoring Curb Your Carbon Month in October, 2015.  This is an expansion of our past Curb Your Car Week.  We would like you to commit to further curbing your Carbon throughout the month of October, 2015.  You can choose your actions from the list below, or add your own.  The Green Tips section of this website includes many ideas that expand on some of those listed below.

Subscribe to our event’s email list to register your interest in participating in Curb Your Carbon Month.

How will you participate? Include your plans for reducing your carbon emissions in October by clicking the “leave a comment” button under the title of this posting and we will try to add any new ideas you propose to our list. We will be sending you reminders as the month of October approaches. Meanwhile, stay tuned!

Transportation

  • Drive fewer miles, especially by yourself
  • Drive responsibly.
  • Take the bus, cycle, walk, or scooter
  • Make sure your tires are fully inflated

Food

  • Eat less red meat
  • Select organically grown food
  • Patronize farmer’s markets
  • Extend your vegetable garden season with a cold frame

Waste

  • Compost your food scraps and yard waste
  • Choose reusable products when possible
  • Recycle if you can’t reuse
  • Consider sharing items that you use infrequently with friends or neighbors

Electricity

  • Opt into a renewable electricity plan
  • Unplug appliances when not in use
  • Choose LED light bulbs
  • Only run full loads in the dishwasher and washing machine

Outdoors

  • Preserve or add native plants
  • Divert roof runoff to low-lying areas or rain barrels
  • Avoid synthetic nitrogen fertilizers

Other

  • Replace your furnace filter
  • Turn down the thermostat in the heating season
  • Program the thermostat for when people are home and awake
  • Identify and seal leaks.
  • Reduce your bottled water footprint…use reusable bottles

All Energy-Saving Lightbulbs are Not Equal: Check your Lumens and Watts!

Imagine if you went to the grocery store and asked for a ‘dozen’ eggs and you were given 11. A little further down the aisle you reached for a ‘dozen’ dinner rolls and you came away with 13. Don’t forget the ‘dozen’ rolls of toilet paper you bought; it has a full 10 rolls in it.  It turns out that the use of the word ‘dozen’ doesn’t mean the same from one object to another–it means “sort of 12”.

This example is exactly what we have been doing with lightbulbs for decades. The standard “60-Watt” light bulb isn’t the same as the next ‘standard’ 60-Watt light bulb. This hasn’t meant too much to the average person except when we’ve noticed that the new bulb “doesn’t seem as bright” as the 3 year old bulb that’s right next to it. That’s because the new bulb isn’t providing the same amount of lumens, but it is still using 60 Watts of electricity.  It’s because the amount of light, or lumens, they give off has nothing to do with the amount of electricity, or watts, they use. In general, the average “60 Watt” light bulb should provide roughly 800-810 lumens.  However the number of lumens listed on light bulb packages range from 620 to 825 lumens.

Now,  jump forward to 2015 where everyone is encouraged to switch to CFL’s or LED’s to reduce their energy usage.  Many light bulb packages say “equivalent to 60-Watt bulb”. That’s great, but which “60-Watt” bulb are they referring to–the one providing a dim 620 lumens, or the one providing a bright 825 lumens?

Be sure to check out the side of the box… and let the lumens light your way.

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