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greenliving


Simple Green Changes +


+ by Merleanne Rampale


With a new Earth Day celebration upon us, what better time to make a resolution and implement helpful changes at home? Here are just a few suggestions for simple green things we can do for ourselves, our families, our community and our planet.


Stop overall wasting Recycle at home, work, school and play. Before you go to throw, think, “Recycle first, trash last.” The good news is that we’re able to recycle more items than ever, from every room in the house. Some of the items that are now recyclable may surprise you. Visit RecycleFirstTrashLast.org for a list of the new recycling guidelines (also in Span- ish) for Lake County communities and keep them handy on the fridge. Recycling is one of the best and easiest things we can do for the envi- ronment. Its impact reaches beyond just keeping items from landfills. Recycling paper can conserve forests and habitat that protects plant and wildlife species. Recycling a cell phone or other elec- tronics at a Solid Waste Agency of Lake County (SWALCO) or other collection event can potentially prevent mining for metals in areas where endangered species like gorillas live.


42 Chicago North & North Shore Keep reusable bags handy


for shopping There are many sizes and designs avail- able; most are fairly inexpensive or are often given away free at events and stores. Some collapse down to fit in a glove box, purse or pocket.


Clear out clutter and stop


junk mail Each year, about 19 billion catalogs are mailed to U.S. consumers, requir- ing more than 53 million trees and 53 billion gallons of water to produce. Visit CatalogChoice.org to stop their delivery. Contact bank and credit card companies to tell them not to use your name and address for any promo- tional or marketing lists. Don’t forget to recycle junk mail you do get. Virtually all the paper in our homes and work- places is recyclable, including window envelopes, phonebooks, shiny-covered catalogs and more.


www.NAChicagoNorth.com


Use recycled-source paper products.


Buy bathroom tissue, paper towels, napkins and other products made from recycled materials.


Give up conventional


paper towels Purchase a pack of microfiber cleaning cloths. Assign one or two for the kitch- en and one or two for the bathroom and other projects around the house.


Conserve water Run the dishwasher only when fully loaded. Turn off the faucet when not actively using water (like when brush- ing teeth or rinsing dishes).


Use a rain barrel Use captured rainwater for garden- ing, car washing and other household activities and chores. Pick one up when SWALCO, the Lake County Storm- water Management Commission and Lake County Forest Preserves sponsor a compost bin, rain barrel and native plant sale from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., May 11 (with additional plant sales May 12), at Independence Grove, in Libertyville.


+ Add Up to Increased Sustainability


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