4 tips for living green when the weather is warm

(BPT) – As the weather changes, so does our lifestyle. From grilling to gardening, we’re ready to shake off winter and jump into warm-weather fun. But what about the impact these activities have on the planet? With just a few habit changes, you can limit your environmental impact by reducing waste and energy use in the spring and summer months. And as you change those habits, don’t forget to recycle everything you can, especially batteries.

To prep for the warmer months, here are some easy tips to make your spring and summer a little more eco-friendly:

Tip 1: Go easy on the AC.

Did you know air conditioning accounts for nearly 20 percent of electricity consumption in American homes? That’s as much electricity as is used by the entire continent of Africa! To reduce your system’s carbon footprint, program your AC to reduce output during the day, and increase the set temperature by a few degrees. Bonus: You’ll save money on your energy bills too!

Tip 2: Bring your own water bottle.

As the weather starts heating up, staying hydrated is more important than ever. Unfortunately, bottled water is a major contributor to landfill waste; Americans throw away more than 60 million plastic water bottles each day. To live greener, be sure to bring your own refillable water bottle.

Tip 3: Trade out your charcoal.

Barbecues are a favorite warm-weather tradition for many, but most grilling charcoal emits high levels of carbon dioxide when burned. To reduce carbon emissions, swap out your charcoal grill for cleaner-burning propane option. Their carbon footprint is about one-third of standard charcoal.

Tip 4: Recycle your batteries.

The warmer months bring a return to outdoor activities like gardening. When you head to your local store to buy tools or plants, bring along your used batteries to be recycled. According to Call2Recycle, Inc., 88 percent of people in the U.S. live within 10 miles of a battery recycling location. Drop-off locations include Best Buy, The Home Depot, Lowe’s, Sears, Staples, and many other retailers you may already visit regularly, making it easy to recycle on-the-go.

Programs like Call2Recycle(R) make it easier than ever to do the right thing by collecting and recycling your batteries. By recycling your batteries, you not only reduce landfill waste, but it also gives batteries a second life as they can be used to make new batteries, kitchen appliances, car parts, and more! To find a recycling location near you, visit www.call2recycle.org/locator.

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