Presentation on theme: "What Can You Do to Lessen Your Environmental Impact?"— Presentation transcript:
1 What Can You Do to Lessen Your Environmental Impact? A Lesson on Environmental Impact
2 Learning ObjectivesAt the end of this lesson students will be able to:Define Environmental Impact and measure their own.Understand ways to lessen their impact in the home, on the road, in the school, and on their own.
3 What is an Environmental Impact? The consequences of human action and behavior on the natural environmentIn this presentation we will be concerned about human actions/behavior related to energy (using electricity, heating, cooling, driving, etc.)
4 Measure your impact! The ecological impact calculator allows you to: Measure how much biologically productive land and sea you are using by looking at:What kind of food you eatHow much trash you produceWhere you live: what kind of house? Do you have electricity?What transportation you use: Do you ride by a car most often? Do you carpool? How much do you use public transportation?How much you fly in an airplane each yearCompare this amount to how much land and sea is availableSee how many Earths it would take to support your lifestyle!
5 Measure your impact!Calculate your ecological footprint using Earth Day’s online calculatorMeasure Your Impact
6 So the real question is… What can YOU do to reduce your ecological footprint and lessen your impact on the environment? Let’s take a look at 4 categories:In the homeOn the roadIn the schoolOn your own
8 In the HomeEveryone in the world can make a difference, no matter where we live!Take a look at the different things in our homes that use energy:Heaters & air conditionersLightsAppliancesWindows & insulationWaste
10 Some things you can do to lessen your impact During the winter: set thermostat at 86°F/30°C during the day and 60°F/15.5°C at nightDuring the summer: set thermostat at 78°F/25.5°CTurn the heat or air down when not homeIf it’s not unbearably hot in the summer, save energy by turning the AC off, opening the windows at night, and shutting them during the dayShut the doors and windows when AC is on
11 Windows Double or triple pane windows are recommended to save energy Windows provide views, lighting, and solar heating. Unfortunately, the heat that leaks through them also accounts for 10-25% of your heating bill. During the summer, poorly insulated windows make your air conditioner work 2-3 times more.Caulk windowsUse curtains to insulate
12 At home, you can… Keep water heater set to low (120°F/48.9°C) Turn off the lights when not in useTake advantage of natural lightUse CFL (compact fluorescent lamp) light bulbs instead of traditional incandescent bulbs; CFL bulbs provide the same amount of light, but use 1/5 to 1/3 of the electric power used by incandescent bulbs and last 8 to 15 times longer. Although CFLs cost more up front, they can save over 5 times of the purchase price in electricity costs over the bulb’s lifetime.One CFL uses as much energy as 9 traditional incandescent light bulbs
13 Did you know turning off the lights in your house can save up to 10-20% of your TOTAL household electricity usage?Now that’s a lot of energy and money!
14 When you’re in the kitchen… Choose what you want before opening the fridge!Shut the fridge and freezer when not in useCook with stove, microwave, & toaster oven instead of ovenLower heat on stove after reaching a boilUse reusable utensils and dishesWash with cold waterThaw food in warm water instead of thawing with microwave!
15 Turn all appliances off and unplug when not in use Use manual appliances; you don’t need an electric can opener or toothbrushTurn OFF computer instead of putting it to ‘sleep’!
16 Energy-efficient products Choosing energy-efficient products can save families about 30% ($400 a year) while reducing our emissions of greenhouse gases.ENERGY STAR is the government-backed symbol for energy efficiency. The ENERGY STAR label makes it easy to know which products to buy without sacrificing features, style or comfort that today's consumers expect.
17 Water Use dishwasher and laundry only when full Clean full loads & select for low water usageUse tap water instead of bottled waterTake shorter showers and choose showers over bathsTurn off water when brushing, washing, shavingFill up the sink with water when hand-washing dishes; don’t wash each dish individually
19 To reduce your impact on the road: Ride your bike or walk: not only are you saving energy, but you’re getting healthier by exercising!Use public transportation when possibleCarpool!Combine car tripsKeep a record of car trips you can avoidA study at the University of Virginia shows students drove significantly less when recording avoided car trips and calculating the amount of gas and money saved
20 When you do drive…Don’t use the car AC: the AC decreases gas mileage by up to 20%Inflate car tires to psi; the recommended tire pressure will be located in the owner’s manualUse cruise control on flat roads and highwaysCoast on downhill roadsDon’t idle car for longer than 10 secondsWhen buying a car, check fuel efficiency & if the car takes renewable fuelsFor every 2 minutes a car is idling, it uses about the same amount of fuel that it takes to go one mile
22 To reduce your impact at school: Print double-sidedAsk your teacher to put notes online to view at home instead of printing them outTurn off computers in labs at night and when not in use for awhileTurn off lights! Another great option is to put automatic light sensors in roomsReplace paper towels with hand driers
23 When you’re at school…Shut the doors to classrooms to keep heat or air inside (don’t prop doors open during class!)Make sure books/furniture aren’t blocking ventsShut the windows when heat/AC is onDuring the winter: set thermostat at 86°F/30°C during the night and 60°F/15.5°C at nightDuring the summer: set thermostat at 78°F/25.5°C
24 RecyclingMaterials you use to recycle are used to create products you buyWhen products are recycled, less materials need to be harvested from the environment for productionYou SAVE energy when you recycle!At your school, find out if there is a recycling program; if not, start oneAn easy way to start a recycling program is by re-using the unprinted side of paperSeparate bins for recycling and trash; place recycling bins in classrooms, offices, bathrooms, the cafeteria, etc.Raise awareness for recycling!
25 When you’re at school…Use programmable thermostats to minimize operating hours of heating/cooling during low occupancy hoursUse CFL or LED lightingTurn heat down in hallways, since oftentimes those are low occupancy areasTurn off computer monitors when not in use
27 Anti-idling at schoolIdling means a vehicle’s engine is running when it is parked or not in useSchool buses travel about four billion miles each year, and more than 25 million American students ride a school bus every day.There are a variety of clean diesel strategies for making school buses a cleaner way for children to get to school. One of the easiest ways to reduce school bus emissions and save money is to reduce idling. Another effective method is to replace the oldest school buses in the fleet.
28 Anti-IdlingWhile all new buses must meet EPA’s tighter emission standards, many older school buses continue to emit harmful diesel exhaust.Do not idle because idling negatively affects:human health by releasing fine particulate matter in diesel fuel exhaust; fine particulate matter can get trapped in lungs and create respiratory problemsAir quality because diesel fuel contains pollutants that contribute to ozone formation, acid rain, haze, and global climate changeWasting of fuel and money; when idling, a school bus engine burns about half a gallon of fuel per hour (think of all the FUEL and MONEY saved by not idling)Engine wear and tear: extended idling causes engine damage
29 Anti-Idling CampaignStart a campaign to get your school involved in idle reductionEstablish an Idle Reduction Policy with rules such as:Buses should typically be moving when the engine is onEngines should be turned off as soon as possible after arriving into loading/unloading areasSchool buses should not be restarted until ready to departLimit idling time during early morning warm up to what manufacturer recommendsCalculate fuel and money savings from idle reductionPromote your campaign and get others involved!
30 YOU!Here are four categories in which you can personally reduce your environmental impact:ConsumerismFoodSpreading AwarenessTravel
31 ConsumerismBuy from local brands and companies: it takes a lot of energy to produce and ship goods across the world… You also will be supporting your local community!Reuse & recycle instead of buying newBuy energy-efficient products and products from “green” companiesBuy in bulk or multi-packs to reduce packaging wasteIf you have old clothing, donate or give as a hand-me-down. If you need new clothing, buying used saves energy that otherwise would be used in the production of new clothing!
32 Use a reusable lunch box instead of paper bags Use reusable water bottles instead of one-time use recyclable water bottlesUse a reusable lunch box instead of paper bagsBring your own bag to grocery & other storesIf you do need bags at the grocery store, ask for paper instead of plastic! Plastic bags are hard to recycle, not biodegradable, cause litter, and harm wildlife
33 A single plastic bag can take up to 1,000 years to degrade…. That’s 12 A single plastic bag can take up to 1,000 years to degrade…. That’s times the average life span of 78 years!!One of the many beaches destroyed by the overuse of plastic bags
34 FoodBuy organic food: organic farms have a much lower environmental impact than conventional farms, use natural methods for soil fertilization, weed prevention, and pest control, and growth hormones are not given to animalsBuy dairy products with no RBSTBuy cage-free eggs
35 Avoid processed food, farm raised fish, and meat from confined feeding operations Eat leftoversGrow your own vegetables and fruitFinish everything on your plate.. Don’t take more than you can’t eat!Compost your fruits, veggies, & eggshells…You can use this as mulch and in soil
36 Let’s talk about composting Compost is organic material that can be added to soil to grow plantsYou can compost by decomposing organic matter such as food scraps, eggshells, grass clippings, etc.By reducing food waste (due to composting) we can reduce methane from landfills. Methane is a greenhouse gas with 21% the global warming potential of CO2 and is produced from rotting food in landfills
37 Composting ContinuedBenefits of composting include: reducing/eliminating the need for chemical fertilizers, promoting higher yields of agricultural crops, remediation of soils, among many othersAll compost requires browns (twigs, branches, and dead leaves), greens (vegetable and fruit scraps, grass clippings, coffee grounds), and waterThere are various types of composting, but one you can do at home is backyard compostingPick a dry, shady spot near a water source for compost pileAdd brown and green materials as they are collected (make sure larger pieces are shredded or chopped)As dry materials are added, add waterOnce the pile is made, bury vegetable and fruit wastes under 10 inches of other compost materialLet the compost sit for at least two months before use
38 Lawn and Garden TipsShred leaves and wood scraps into chips to use as mulch on garden bedsBuy garden tools and equipment made from recycled materialsTo protect young seedlings from wind, frost,and animals, place the cut-off bottomsof plastic milk jugs or small paper bagsover the seedlings
39 Travel Reduce air miles travelled each year Travel light: don’t over-packStay in sustainable/eco-friendly hotels, lodges, etc.Unplug appliances at home when going on a tripAt hotels, don’t have towels washed every dayUnderground eco-friendly hotel in Bozen, Italy that uses ecological methods of heating, cooling, & building
40 Spread AwarenessInform family, friends, & schoolmates about energy-saving processesJoin/create an environmental club at school & make an effort to reduce energy useJoin GO3’s online network
41 What else can you do?Play outside instead of using technology like the computer, video games, & movies (which use a lot of energy)Plant trees! Trees create and store CO2Participate in a park or forest clean-upWhat else can you do? Can you and your classmates come up with any other activities or actions to reduce your impact on the environment?