Implementing steps to promote an environmentally friendly home is something all homeowners can do. Steps such as reducing energy use, recycling, and reducing waste can have a major impact in promoting a healthy climate. Additionally, as consumers, by taking action at home nurses can help influence shifts in market demand that promote climate friendly practices across industry, such as in the heating and consumer products sectors.
What can Nurses Do?
Here are some quick and easy steps nurses can take in the home to help reduce their climate impact:
- Use non-toxic cleaning products
- Reduce energy use in the home by turning off lights and using natural light. Teach children “TOLBY”- Turn off lights behind you
- Discuss with utility company regarding use ofrenewable energy, such as community solar or wind source.
- Install solar panels if able or buy shares in a community solar garden.
- Adjust your thermostat, lower in the winter, higher in the summer. Install a programmable thermostat for maximum efficiency.
- Use energy efficient light bulbs and appliances
- Get a home energy audit to identify ways to reduce energy use
- Install low-flow shower heads
- Recycle and reduce waste. Compost when possible.
- Opt to receive electronic bills and statements
- Opt to purchase products with the least amount of packaging. Request compostable or recyclable take home containers from restaurants. Refuse to use styrofoam products.
- Start a home garden. Eat locally and seasonally. Support local and organic farmers. Take reusable bags when you go shopping.
Nurses Leading the Way
Check out this video from ANHE board member Dr. Barbara Sattler as she talks about some of the work she has done throughout her career to bring attention to environmental factors that impact health, including climate change. The video is filmed right on her own home organic farm!
Try one or more of the carbon footprint calculators for individuals or households
The Lazy Person’s Guide to Saving the World offers suggestions of action at home that promotes a healthy climate.
15 ways to help reduce global carbon emissions
Realistic Ways You Can Combat Climate Change, Today, personal steps to reduce GHG emissions rated by time, effort, and cost.