Eco-Friendly Made Easy

By Jennifer Pirtle

You can help the environment in even the simplest of ways

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In the day-to-day shuffle of life, saving the planet often takes a backseat to more immediate demands. "Thankfully, you don't have to take on the whole project at once," says Heather Stephenson, cofounder of IdealBite.com, a daily eco-tips e-newsletter. Here are a few ways to get started:

Say it With Organics: Florists often buy their blooms from countries where chemical use and labor standards aren't regulated, or they buy bouquets that are transported great distances, burning up gasoline. Instead, pick up fresh flowers at your local farmers market or order online at organicbouquet.com.

Change Bulbs: Conserve energy and cash by swapping your so-last-century incandescent light bulbs for compact fluorescent lights. CFLs cost more upfront but last up to 15 times longer. You'll save more than $100 in electricity costs over the lifetime of each light.

Bring Your Own Mug: Whether you love or hate Starbucks, the company reduced 655,000 pounds of paper cup waste in 1 year by offering a 10-cent discount to customers who brought their own mugs. If you drink coffee at work, keep a ceramic mug at the office and skip the cups.



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