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Green Tips

6 Ways to be Green this Halloween

 

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Halloween can often be the spookiest time of the year, what with folks dressed as goblins, ghouls, and zombies running around town all night long. But while parting with sumptuous candy might seem like a scary thought, being green on Halloween shouldn’t be. Here are some hard and fast tips for staying green this year before the full moon rises on October 31st

  1. Reuse and recycle candy bags or buckets – If you choose to spend your night going door-to-door hunting for snacks instead of giving them out, make sure to use something you can find around the house. A paint bucket, a baseball cap, a pillow case… these are just a few examples of things you can collect candy in.
  2. Transportation – Go door-to-door with your friends and family by foot or by bicycle. Take the night off from driving around. It’s more fun to walk around on Halloween anyway.
  3. Prohibit plastic at parties – If you are throwing a costume party –you can use biodegradable dishes , glasses and cutlery. Have your guests write their name on their cups with a Sharpie, so they can keep track of which glass is theirs rather than  using multiple at the party. Make your own decorations – don’t rush out to your local drugstore when you can festoon your home with eerie adornments all on your own. Goblins, witches, skeletons… all of these things can be created in your own personal arts and crafts work space. Imagination is cheap!
  4. Buy the local orange produce – Support local farmers and businesses and grab your future jack-o’-lantern from them. Maybe next year, you can grow one in your own garden if you’re really feeling green.
  5. Go full pumpkin – If you carve a pumpkin, use the insides for food! Don’t let it go to waste. You can find a whole host of ideas and recipes here.
  6. Create your own costume – Sure, you could go out and buy that Jackie Moon costume for 70 bucks. Probably wouldn’t be that hard to find a Michael Jackson “Thriller” jacket online. Heck, there are so many Harley Quinn costumes at Halloween pop-up they’re practically unavoidable. But why not be environmental and create your own mummy costume with toilet paper and some gauze? With some patience and creativity, mix and match items in your wardrobe until you get that Ace Ventura or Pepper Potts look you’ve always wanted. Characters live in your closet, and you can bring them to life without spending a single penny!
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The Joys of Carpooling

It’s that time of year again—time for kids to go back to school.  Students all around the country are packing their backpacks and emotionally preparing themselves for another year of learning avalanche of knowledge.

If you’re looking for an easy way to help the environment as your child goes back to school, consider carpooling!  If your child doesn’t take the bus every morning, make a carpool group with a few other families in your community to cut down on gas costs.  It helps keep the “green” in your wallet, and it’s also great for the environment by reducing the number of cars on the road.

 

Check out these carpooling facts from the National Resource Defense Council:

  • Carpooling saves you money: less driving means fewer fill-ups and less automobile wear-and-tear.
  • Carpooling increases productivity: less time stuck in traffic means quicker commutes and more time to get things done.
  • Carpooling saves lives: fewer cars on the road means fewer accidents and crash-related deaths and injuries.
  • On Average, a car produces 10,000 lbs of carbon dioxide and 600 lbs of carbon monoxide in one year, while consuming on average around 550 gallons of gasoline a year.
  • If every passenger car in the US carried just one additional commuter for a single day, the US could save over 30 million gallons of gasoline.

 

In case you have any lingering doubts about what carpooling can do for you or the planet, take a listen to Grimm’s Russell Hornsby and Royal Pains’ Mark Fuerstein:

 

 

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#TMYK: Water-Saving Tips from NBCUniversal Stars

During the summer, we tend to use a lot of water—washing cars, playing in sprinklers, hydrating the lawn. But there are still ways to conserve water, even when the mercury is high.

In these The More You Know videos, NBCUniversal stars share their favorite ways to do so.

TODAY’s Hoda Kotb recommends cutting down on our shower time by listening to music:

Sunny Side Up’s Tim Kubart reminds us to turn off the tap when we’re brushing our teeth:

In addition, here are some more easy ways to save water, via the United Stated Environmental Protection Agency and the National Resources Defense Council:

  • Bathroom: Shower instead of bathing. Showers use on average 10 to 25 gallons of water, while a full bathtub can use up to 70 gallons.
  • Kitchen: If you have the option, use your dishwasher instead of washing by hand, which could use up to 10 times more water. And only wash full loads of dishes in your dishwasher.
  • Yard: Water your grass or garden in the morning when it’s still cool outside; at midday, more of the water will evaporate.
  • Vehicle: Get your car washed professionally as opposed to doing it yourself. This could save up to 100 gallons of water.
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Green Your July 4th Celebration

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July 4th is a time to celebrate, and NBC will be doing so in style, along with Kenny Chesney, 5 Seconds of Summer, Meghan Trainor, Pitbull, Sara Bareilles and many others at this year’s Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks Spectacular, live at 8 pm ET. While you’re preparing for your own party or BBQ, keep these tips in mind to make your holiday a greener one:

  • Forty percent of food in the U.S. ends up in landfills. Reduce your food waste by saving and freezing leftovers instead of throwing them away.
  • If you’re grilling, consider using propane instead of charcoal to cut down on your carbon footprint.
  • Instead of paper or Styrofoam plates, dish up your meal onto reusable or biodegradable plates.
  • It may be hot, but if all your guests are outdoors, there’s no keep the air conditioner on. Make sure to turn it down or off.
  • And while you’re at it, don’t forget to shut off power strips to cut down on phantom energy.
  • If you’re tuning in to the fireworks on NBC, save energy by turning off the lights while the TV is on. (And isn’t it better to watch fireworks in the dark?)

Happy July 4th!

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