Category: Green Living FAQ

What is Green Living?

What-is-Green-Living

Green living encompasses nearly all aspects of life. This lifestyle prevents environmental harm, helping to ensure that humans and animals can safely live on Earth for centuries to come. In some cases, it can offer supplemental benefits, like saving money or protecting your health.

Live Green To Conserve Our Planet

To live in an eco-friendly manner, it’s important to avoid unnecessary consumption. For instance, you could conserve plastic or cardboard by purchasing a large package of rice rather than several small bags or boxes. You can also forgo disposable goods that you don’t really need, such as paper cups and plastic shopping bags.

Renewable Energy

Renewable energy is another important aspect of green living. People can cut pollution by installing wind turbines or photovoltaic panels on their homes. If this isn’t an option, it’s best to find ways to conserve electricity by using more efficient devices or turning off electronics when they aren’t needed.

Other Ways To Reduce Consumption

Transportation plays a major role as well. Although it isn’t always possible, people can greatly reduce their environmental impact by walking or using bicycles. Trains, buses, and car-pooling also save considerable amounts of fuel and minimize air pollution.

Water Consumption

Saving water is crucial, especially in arid climates. This type of conservation also reduces consumption of the electricity that homes use to pump water. Sometimes this task is as simple as taking a shower instead of a bath. It may also involve more complex efforts, such as repairing leaky faucets or replacing inefficient fixtures.

Green Shopping

Green living often prompts careful shopping choices. For example, you might choose to buy an Energy Star appliance, rechargeable batteries or unbleached paper goods.

And while it’s not always a realistic option, buying used merchandise can also reduce a person’s carbon footprint in many situations. For instance, a tremendous amount of used clothing remains in excellent condition. These items don’t need to be shipped across the country or around the world before someone buys them.

You could also visit a restaurant that uses biodegradable containers rather than foam take-out boxes or coffee cups.

Small Decisions Make a Big Impact

These tiny decisions don’t only affect your personal impact on the environment. They set a positive example for other individuals around you.

Organic-food-shoppingThis encourages businesses to supply more eco-friendly products and services. If most people refuse to buy bleached coffee filters or inefficient appliances, manufacturers will need to make improvements and suppliers offer better products.

Green living enthusiasts frequently check ingredient lists when they purchase household supplies. Numerous cleaning products contain harmful toxic chemicals. They can trigger health problems and contribute to water pollution. Fortunately, safe natural alternatives are available.

People also protect the environment by forgoing various chemicals that aren’t really necessary. They let harmless dandelions grow in the lawn rather than spraying weed killers. Others prioritize non-chemical ways to keep pests at bay, such as caulking and weather-stripping.

Not everyone can afford to eat exclusively organic food, but most people have the ability to buy at least a few of these products. Farmers grow organic crops without spraying pesticides or other chemicals, so they’re less likely to harm human or animal health.

Taking Out the Trash

Think twice before throwing any significant item in the trash. Ask yourself if someone else could make use of it in some way. Consider donating it to a thrift shop, offering it for free in the classified ads, or conduct some more research to find out if it could be repaired.

Recycling is also a very important part of living green. You can buy products with packagings that can be recycled, such as cardboard instead of styrofoam or hybrid materials. After using these items, bring the materials to local recycling centers.

Get Your Priorities Green

Green priorities will incentivize you to learn new skills or techniques. You can reduce packaging waste, get better nutrition, or even make a difference with something as simple as learning how to make a printer use both sides of the paper.

Eco-friendly living certainly takes extra time or work in some situations. Nonetheless, it’s worth the effort to gain the priceless benefits of this lifestyle. Green choices can help make it possible for a person to live a long, healthy life while working to preserve what’s most beautiful in our world.

What Is Energy Efficiency?

Energy-efficiency
The term “energy efficiency” often emerges when alternative power sources are discussed. This applies to electronics, appliances, cooling and heating equipment and so much more. Unfortunately, this phrase is misused in ways which only confuse its actual meaning.
 
Energy efficiency isn’t the same as conserving energy. Efficiency relates to the specific ways by which power is produced and consumed.

Efficiency Simplified

 
An energy-efficient device gets the most out of a certain amount of fuel or electricity. The formula to determine efficiency is output divided by input.
 
For example, a car that travels 210 miles on six gallons of gas receives a fuel economy rating of 35 miles per gallon (mpg).
 
Avoiding the trip is “conservation”. Taking a shorter route to get to the same place is “efficiency”. Basically, energy efficiency enables you to get the same results with less sunlight, fuel or electricity.

Energy Efficiency Rating

Many appliances, electronics, some building products, and many other modern amenities all have a rating which reveals how efficient they are.
Renewable-energyA solar panel, for example, is more efficient if it produces extra power from the same amount of sunlight when compared to another type of solar panel
It could, therefore, receive a higher efficiency rating.
 
This rating will differ from one manufacturer to another.
It’s always a good idea to look for the Energy Star Rating if you want to ensure you’re getting the most efficient product.

Global Energy Crisis

Energy efficiency is on top of our global conservation list. Currently, we are striving to find the quickest and least costly way of addressing our planet’s energy security.
 
The world continues to face environmental and economic challenges, and limited energy sources such coal and gas continue to be exploited as demand increases, regardless of the effect it has on the environment.
 
However, there still remains an abundance of untapt natural and renewable resources. Tapping into the Earth’s renewable energy is the only answer to the mass destruction caused by the endless over-consumption and exploitation of natural resources. 

Renewable Energy Sources

The sun is only one renewable energy resource that every country possesses in abundance. Yet the possibilities that solar power can provide is only in its relative infancy – with massive strides taken in the last few decades alone.
 
The same can be said for hydroelectricity, wind power, and other forms of renewable energy as well.
 
It’s important that we apply energy efficiency at home first, in our daily lives. Green living always starts at home. This will ensure that we serve the needs of the present without compromising future generations and their energy needs.

Power of the Future

The energy crisis is a broad and complex topic. Most people don’t feel connected to its reality unless there is a power failure for a few hours or even a line at the gas station.
 
However, as energy efficient policies and other government solar panel incentives have makes an impact on the global energy market, renewable energy has finally started playing a key part to address the ongoing energy crisis.
 
Energy efficiency is key to ensuring a safe, reliable, affordable and sustainable energy system for the future.
 

How Long Do Solar Panels Really Last?

Solar-panel-installation

If you’re ready to convert your home or business to be more sustainable and make use of green energy, solar panels are an excellent option.

That being said, the overall lifespan of solar panels is an issue that is continuously being called into question.

With a slew of conflicting information on the market, where do you turn to find the definitive answers in terms of the longevity of your solar panels?

Let’s have a look and answer this questions once and for all….

The average lifespan of solar panels

It’s imperative to note that the quality, and thus the lifespan, of solar panels, depend on several factors.

These include the specific materials used, the manufacturer itself, and the basic upkeep of the materials.

However, it’s equally important to keep in mind that the first solar panel ever is still in working order after 60 years of use. In addition, Kyocera has reported that they have several solar panels which continue to offer outstanding performance after being installed for almost 30 years.

In the majority of cases, solar panels offer no less than 10 years at 90%, and 80% over 25 years of the manufacturer’s stated power generation rating. Most panels are expected to operate at no less than 60% even after 40 years.

What happens at the end of their lifespan?

Fortunately, solar panels have such long lifespans that very few people have ever had to deal with the need to dispose of them.

Even if you’ve got some very old panels, they are probably still worth keeping.

However, the substantial silicon components in solar panels do pose an environmental hazard. They must be disposed of properly should you ever have to.

At present, there aren’t many services equipped to deal with spent solar cells. However, that is not something anyone will have to worry about anytime soon, and it is expected that by the time disposal does become an issue, solar disposal services will become a normal part of our everyday recycling culture.

If you do have unusable solar panels, place them inside an enclosed concrete structure and contact a disposal company that handles these kinds of waste products.

Extending the life of home solar panels

Luckily there are many things you can do to help preserve your solar paneling and maximize their lifespan:

Avoid damage

The first method is to avoid physical damages. This may be easier said than done, however, and the more scratches and physical damage a panel endures, the faster it will deteriorate.

Regular maintenance

Perhaps the most important method is to keep up with maintenance. This is done by having them serviced if there are noticeable issues or wear and tear, as well as keeping up with proper cleaning of the panels, but this may occur much less than you actually think.

Smart placement

The more severe weather they are exposed to, the faster your solar panels will become worn. In order to prevent this, give some thought to their placement of your panels in relation to the weather patterns that frequent your area.

Overall, solar paneling is a relatively new technology with major advances in the last few decades.  Installing them not only helps the environment as well as your wallet, but you will be a pioneer in terms of helping to develop this technology for future generations.