December 2 — Did you know? If your washing machine has a setting for the amount of clothing you're washing, choose a low setting—you'll use less water and your clothes will get just as clean. Using cold water can save up to 80% of the energy required to wash clothes. Use less hot water. Washing your clothes in cold or warm instead of hot water can save as much as 500 pounds of carbon dioxide per year. The average washing machine uses about 41 gallons of water per load, whereas newer, high-efficiency models use less than 28 gallons of water per load.December 9 — Did you know? Only 10% of the energy used by an incandescent bulb produces light; the rest is given off as heat. Compact fluorescent lightbulbs (CFLs) are up to 4 times as efficient as incandescent bulbs. Replacing one incandescent lightbulb with a compact fluorescent light can save 150 pounds of carbon dioxide per year. CFLs produce the same amount of light, use 1/3 of the electricity and last up to 10 times as long. December 16 — Did you know? In North America, fruits and vegetables travel an average of 1,500 miles before reaching your plate. Buying fresh, local food eliminates long distances traveled and preserves flavor and nutrients.
December 23 — Did you know? The US uses 100 billion plastic bags annually, consuming about 12 million barrels of oil. Less than 1% of plastic bags are ever recycled. Reusable bags can help reduce the number of plastic bags you use.