Everyday Environmental Changes

At Nightingale, we have made a commitment to always do what we can to build a greener tomorrow. Our environmental initiatives aim to minimize our carbon footprint in many ways including using clean energy, our zero-landfill policy, and partnering with suppliers that share those same ideals. There are ways we can all make a positive environmental impact in our day-to-day lives as well. As you will see below, some of these changes are not only easy, but can even save you money along the way!


1. Heating and Electricity


Think about lowering your thermostat a little to save energy. By raising your thermostat a bit in the summer and lowering it slightly in the winter you are saving money and reducing the power needed to heat and cool your home. If you lower your thermostat by 10 -15 degrees for 8 hours, you can save 5-15% on your annual heating bill which translates to reduced energy waste.


There are programmable thermostats you can install that automatically lower or raise the temperature depending on the time of day. This is a hands-off way to make a positive environmental impact by saving energy, time, and money. Replacing windows with more efficient double-paned options along with adding or improving to your home’s insulation will reduce the strain on your heating and cooling systems. Along with adjusting your thermostat, setting your water heater to a lower temperature will also curb costs and negative environmental impacts.


In terms of lighting, there are many small changes you can make to reduce your energy consumption such as: turning off lights when leaving a room and replacing traditional lightbulbs with CLF or LED options as they use less electricity and last longer. Opening your blinds and letting natural light in helps you avoid turning the lights on for as long as possible.


Regarding your household appliances, be sure to unplug those that are not in use to prevent phantom electricity from being consumed. When the time comes to upgrade your appliances consider switching to more energy efficient options. In the long run, these changes save you money and reduce your carbon footprint.


2. Water Consumption


Water is an essential part of our everyday lives but there more energy efficient ways to manage our water usage to reduce our impact on the planet.


When getting ready in the morning, you can turn the tap off when brushing your teeth, take shorter showers and even collect runoff water when waiting for your shower to heat up and use it to water household plants. You can also reduce your water usage by installing low-flow showerheads, faucets and toilets. Be sure to repair leaky taps and pipes to reduce water waste and save money on your hydro bill.


For appliances such as your dishwasher or washing machine that also use copious amounts of water, consider making the following changes: wait until you have a full load of laundry or dishes before starting your washing machine or dishwasher. When washing dishes, don’t forget to turn off the tap to not waste water. You can save energy by running your washing machine on cold water as opposed to hot, most of the energy wasted is used on heating the water. Even when drying clothes, using a clothesline or drying rack instead of a dryer will save a tremendous amount of energy.


3. Everyday Habits


Carbon emissions play a large part in depleting the ozone layer and perpetuating global warming, little changes such as carpooling, taking public transit, even biking or walking to places can help to significantly reduce this impact. Combining errands rather than taking multiple trips will avoid unnecessary back and forth, save you gas and in turn save the ozone. A long-term commitment to reduce CO2 emissions would be to buy an electric or hybrid vehicle when car shopping.


When grocery shopping, consider bringing your own reusable canvas bags to avoid using paper or plastic. Only buy what you need to reduce food and garbage waste. Choosing to eat less meat will decrease the levels of CO2 emissions that are related to the production of beef products. You can even compost and make your own garden home to give back to the earth and appreciate what it can provide you with.


Purchase a water filter for your taps at home and invest in a reusable water bottle to eliminate the purchasing of single-use plastic bottles. Plastic is such a significant contributor to harming the planet so try to swap out single-use items such as disposable razors, plasticware, and straws for more environmentally friendly reusable options. Thrifting clothes and donating items you no longer use or need are great ways to give back to the community and reduce waste.


You can change all personal accounts to include paperless billing and alter your subscription services to online instead of physical to reduce paper production and waste. Also, eliminate paper towel usage by using reusable dishcloths or towels.


Finally, RECYCLE! Recycling is the simplest choice you can make each day to reduce your impact on the environment. Don’t hesitate to share these tips with your friends and family to include them in our commitment to building a greener tomorrow.