Australia is the driest continent yet we continue to waste water
It's easy to save water. For watering the garden try installing a simple mechanical timer to shut the water off after a while, even when hand-watering, then you can tell how much water was used. Save the bath and laundry water for the garden too, a collapsible bucket is ideal for this, just store it in the bathroom or laundry cabinet. Install a rain diverter on a gutter down pipe to divert rainwater from the roof to the garden, or store it in rainwater tank for later use. A grey-water diverter can be installed under the laundry basin to divert grey water to the garden.
Eco pest control methods avoid using harmful chemicals
Our own Ecopia fly swatters are made from recycled mesh and fencing wire, they are very tough and guaranteed to last for many years.
About 18 million trees are cut down in Australia every year to make wood chips, pulp and paper
Synthetic cleaners and aerosol sprays can pollute the air in average home to levels found on a busy city street.
The toxic residues adhere to surfaces for months and years causing various chronic ailments. Natural detergents and dish-washing liquids don’t contain harsh chemicals that pose a hazard to human health or the environment. Possibly the best eco friendly cleaners are micro-fiber cleaning mitts and cloths, you can use the micro-fiber mitts with just water to clean just about anything, add a little eco friendly cleaning solution for stubborn spots.
The easiest eco friendly alternative is to avoid using harsh detergents that pollute, most household cleaning can be done using biodegradable detergents and do try micro-fiber cloths as they really will do the job.
Dont waste electricity on appliances.
Eco lights can reduce your lighting bill by 80%.
Most energy-saving lights is the compact fluorescent, commonly called a CFL.
CFLs are a great improvement on the incandescent light bulb that has a tungsten filament, because that filament is really nothing more that a heater in a glass bulb, the electricity is used to heat up the filament until it gets so hot that it begins glowing, that's why its called 'incandescent'.
CFLs use only one fifth of the electricity compared to an incandescent because they don't waste electricity to produce heat, another great benefit is that they will last 6 to 10 times longer than a filament bulb. They can produce different shades of light; the most popular is 'warm white' because it most closely resembles the Colour of a tungsten filament globe. A lot has been said about mercury used in CFL lights but the truth is that the amounts used is only a few milligrams and in areas with coal-fired power stations the use of CFLs and other energy efficient technologies saves on mercury emissions due to reduced power demand.
LEDs are a relatively new technology, they consume very little electricity and are useful for spotlights, reading lights and down lights.
We Australians have relatively clean air, but occasionally it is a problem. Don’t allow air pollution to go unnoticed, complain about the smog and industrial pollution. It requires an ongoing and concerted effort on our part to make the legislators sit up and take notice of our feelings. Complain to your local shire or council and write letters to your newspaper. Put up posters on your school and library bulletin boards, start a petition, stomp yer feet!
Be aware of the known health risks associated with unflued gas heaters.
A report presented to Government by Len Ferrari, the President of The Clean Air Society of Australia and New Zealand (CASANZ) in October 2002, showed that unflued gas heaters were a source of toxic gases. CASANZ represents the majority of air pollution specialists across Australia and New Zealand.
Poor air conditioning systems are more prevalent in old office blocks than in the home but it is worth noting that even in the home breathing difficulties and asthma in children has been linked to home air conditioners.
Air conditioners with poor filtration or clogged and dirty ducting re-circulate stale indoors air containing dust particles, hair and skin fragments, dust mite excreta and many other air-born particles.
Cigarette smoke contains over 4000 chemical compounds, toxins and cancer causing agents.
Here in Australia, a vast dry continent, we lack clean water. Drought, pollution and groundwater salination compound the problem. The farmer trying to survive till the next rains because the old river that used to run all year round is a mud pool, the land turning white from rising salt.
Maybe we caused that, you..me..our parents..the pioneer farmer clearing trees for more grazing land, anyway blame is futile.
IIt’s time to turn back the clock, restore the balance, it can be done. It will take a hundred years but it can be done.
The rivers, waterways and lakes are part of an ecosystem so we must not allow them to become polluted. Fortunately the policing of the water systems has become a priority but if you notice cases of water pollution then report it to the authorities.
Conserve water. It’s just common sense. Fix dripping taps, reduce the flow when washing your hands or doing the dishes. Any time you use water just use less.
Try to upgrade to water saving shower heads and toilet cisterns. Bucket the grey laundry water and bathwater and use it in the garden or install a grey water diverter to automatically divert it to the garden.
In the garden
Catch the rainwater from the roof by diverting the down-pipe runoff to the garden or storage tank. You can even drink it, first allow the initial runoff to rinse the roof and flush out the pipes.
Use a watering can to water the garden, but if you use sprinklers then fit a tap timer and set it to shut off after a while, in case you forget. Remember it’s better for the garden if you give a good soak twice a week, that promotes deep root growth and the plant becomes resistant to temporary lack of water.
Replace those silly alien plants with hardy Australian plants. Consider removing that water guzzling, nineteenth century anachronism called the lawn if you live in a low rainfall area.