Take action at home

10 good ideas for a start

1. Switch to renewable energy

Buy non-polluting green electricity from your electricity company. If they don't sell it, can you change power companies to one that does? Get your school, company or community to buy renewable energy, too.

2. Buy energy efficient appliances
If you're buying a washing machine, refrigerator, dish washer or oven, buy the most energy-efficient model you can afford. They might be more expensive but they pay for themselves through lower energy bills. The same is true for office equipment like computers, copiers, printers.
Look out for appliances on at http://www.topten.info (Austria, Germany, Switzerland, France, Belgium) or the Energy Star label (US).

3. Fluorescent lamps are cheaper in the long run
Replace the lights you use most with compact fluorescent lamps. They cost more than ordinary lamps but you end up saving money because they use only around one-quarter of the electricity to prove the same light. And they last four times as long as a normal light bulb!

4. Avoid stand-by and turn off lights
Turn off televisions, videos, stereos and computers when they are not in use - they can use between 10 and 60% of the power they use when on "stand by". Turn off lights when you don't need them - it saves energy already after a minute or two. Turn off computer screens when you take a break.

5. Wash economically
Use the washing machine or dish washer only when you have a full load. Use washing powder suitable for low temperature washes and use economy programmes.

6. About your fridge
Don't leave fridge doors open for longer than necessary, let food cool down fully before putting it in the fridge or freezer, defrost regularly and keep at the right temperature. Where possible don't stand cookers and fridges/freezers next to each other.

7. Getting around and on your way to work and school
When you want to make short journeys, try walking! Use a bicycle for short trips and local shopping. It keeps you fit too and is fun too! Make more use of public transport, such as buses and trains, for longer journeys. Share care journeys with work colleagues or friends - up to a third of car mileage is accounted for by the drive to work.

8. About your car
If you have to buy a car, buy a fuel-efficient, environmentally friendly one. This will save you money and keep more CO2 from going into the atmosphere. Make sure that your tires are inflated correctly - this can save you 5% on the cost of your petrol. Turn off your engine when waiting in your car.

9. Reduce your air travel
When you travel to your holiday destination by plane you are contributing to significant emissions of climate change causing carbon dioxide. So take vacations nearer to home, or get there by other forms of transport such as train, bus or boat. If you have to fly, consider buying carbon offsets to compensate for the emissions caused by your flight.

10. Enjoy the sun! :-)
Fit solar panels on the roof of your home. Turn your own home into a clean power station!

We can all do something right away.
And if we all do, something will undoubtedly change.