Ok, I confess that normally my new years resolutions don’t last until the end of January. (although the not smoking has been 5 years so there is hope). So here they are for 2006 – OMR’s environment friendly year.
1. Insulate the house properly. Get the windows replaced (already in progress). Double insulate the loft. It’s a crappy job, but long term it saves money & helps the environment. Replace the immersion heater cover. Not just to save money & help the environment, but because it is worn, torn & looks crap.
2. Replace all the bulbs with long lasting low energy jobbies. Again there is an initial expense but it pays long term. Make sure all new electrical goods are A rated for efficiency. Turn off the lights, TV and PC when not in use. (standby on a PC or TV uses almost as much power as leaving it on apparently).
3. Recycle. I’m so bad at this. Its so easy just to stick everything into the bin. But 2006. Glass, newspaper, cardboard & tins will all get sorted & recycled. Honest.
4. Start the wildlife garden. Having to have a slight rethink on this, as the location I had in mind for the pond has a main sewer just underneath the ground. But I want this to be ready for spring. Put up the bird and bat boxes, bug huts & butterfly home. Sort out a bird table & plant some trees & indigenous, wildlife friendly shrubs. Fill the bird feeders regularly.
5. Walk to work every day, not just when the weather is nice. I own an umbrella. Its only 20 minutes. There is no excuse.
6. Fix the garage roof & install a rainwater collection system, with overflow to bog garden & wildlife pond. Also consider a rainwater reuse system for the house. Water costs money, I will reduce my waste.
7. Cost up PV solar tiles for the roof . PV solar is expensive but it will produce about half my yearly electric requirement, and I can sell any excess electric to my energy supplier. Its green and long term it pays.
8. Lobby green issues. I sit and moan but I don’t lobby. I have a voice. The government works for me. I’m gonna get out there and start shouting. And not just the government. Large flat roofed buildings like supermarkets are ideal places for solar PV installations which long term save the company money. It greener and its cheaper. I just need to let Sainsbury’s know.
9. Don’t take carrier bags at the supermarket. I have a shopping bag, I will use the damn thing. Buy loose vegetables, not pre-wrapped, look for the fair trade & free range labels, buy eco friendly soap powder.
10. Less beer, more sex. Not particularly environmentally friendly this one, but I need to lose the weight.
And as well as making the world a little bit better most of these things either save me money long term or cost nothing but a little effort. They should improve my life and make me feel good about myself. Its got to be worth the effort. Go on, join me…