Save money and reduce climate change

More energy conservation could result in less environmental impact and an increase in financial savings.

As explained in the article Reduce, recycle and reuse to decrease climate change, Hurricane Irma caused major damage and affected millions, including Michigan residents. As storms of this intensity become more and more frequent, climate change and variability become topics of major discussion.

Climate change refers to any major change in measures of climate, which include temperature, precipitation, rainfall, snow and wind. These changes last for decades or longer. Many factors are causing climate change, including human activities through burning fossil fuels, cutting down trees, planting trees and building developments.

Each of us makes many decisions in our homes and communities about the products we buy and personal habits. Some decisions result in more air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions. We all can make a difference by reducing consumption.

According to an online calculator from the City of Chicago Climate Action website, the personal choices that will each save a household over $100 per year are:

  • Turning down the thermostat three degrees
  • Replacing incandescent light bulbs with CFL’s
  • Keeping cars tuned up and tires properly inflated
  • Reducing shower time by two minutes

handy checklist from the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality contains 50 tips for reducing greenhouse emissions in our homes and communities. Consider your existing household activities and decide how a few personal changes could reduce your impact to climate change in addition to saving you money.

MSU Extension also offers classes on personal financial management. Register for the online course “eHome Money Management” or search the Events on the MI Money Health website to find a webinar or an in-person class near you.

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