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Five things we can “give up” for Lent to make a greener planet!

Green Tip

The image has been created to highlight eco-friendly practices for Lent, showcasing a collage of actions that contribute to a greener planet. It visually emphasizes the global impact of individual choices, blending themes of spiritual discipline with ecological responsibility in a hopeful and engaging way.

Give up bottled water. 

Did you know that it takes 26 bottles of water to produce the plastic container for a one-liter bottle of water, and that doing so pollutes 25 liters of groundwater? Don’t leave a trail of plastic water bottles in your wake! Stop buying bottled water. Use reusable water bottles instead made from materials like stainless steel or aluminum that are not likely to degrade over time.

Give up the clothes dryer.

The second biggest household energy user, after the refrigerator, is the clothes dryer. Hanging clothing outside in the sun and air to dry is the most energy-efficient method -- or use a folding indoor rack all year long. When using the dryer, be sure to clean the lint filter after each load and dry only full loads of clothes. Dry heavy fabrics separately from lighter ones, and don't add wet clothing in the middle of the drying cycle.

Give up conventional toilet paper.

If every household in the United States bought just one four-pack of 260-sheet recycled bath tissue, instead of the typical tissue made from virgin fiber, it would eliminate 60,600 pounds of chlorine pollution, preserve 356 million gallons (1.35 billion liters) of fresh water and save nearly 1 million trees. And the best news is that a four-pack of recycled toilet paper costs about the same as a four-pack of conventional toilet paper.

Give up paper towels. 

No matter how you look at it, paper towels create waste. During your next trip to the grocery store, buy some reusable microfiber towels, which grip dirt and dust like a magnet. Or use old towels. Toss the towels in the wash and reuse them again and again. They are even great for countertops and mirrors. When you must use disposable towels, look for recycled ones. If every household in the United States replaced just one roll of virgin fiber paper towels (70 sheets) with 100 percent recycled ones, we could save 544,000 trees.

Give up 2 degrees.

Electric power plants are still one of the country's largest industrial sources of global warming pollutants. By snuggling under a blanket on the couch on a cold winter night instead of turning up the heat, you can save pounds of pollution, as well as some money off your utility bills. In the winter and spring, set your thermostat in winter to 68o F or less during the daytime and 55o F before going to sleep or when you are away for the day. 

The St. John’s Green Team

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