Countless scientific findings supporting global warming prove that it’s only gotten worse. Now more than ever is a good time to take matters into your own hands and create a more energy-efficient home.

You’re probably thinking, “But I don’t have the money to transition to solar power energy” and that’s totally valid. Here are a few simpler ways you can adjust your home life to that of a more sustainable and energy-efficient lifestyle.

Invest in Plants

If you’re low on money or spare time, planting trees, shrubs, and/or flowers is one of the cheapest and easiest ways you can help the Earth. Plants breathe in carbon dioxide which is one of the harmful greenhouse gases causing damage to the Earth’s atmosphere. Better yet, plants produce oxygen, which is good for us humans. Not only does planting trees go a little way toward helping the planet, but it also benefits us as well. And if you’re planting flowers, you’ll have the added benefit of their beauty, too.

For example, a single tree produces approximately 260 pounds of oxygen per year, which means two mature trees can supply enough oxygen a year to support a family of four. Additionally, the average hardwood tree can absorb 48 tons of carbon dioxide a year. While planting trees alone won’t solve the problem of human-induced climate change, it is a way to do your part. If you have lots of land, this is a great way to take advantage of unused space.

Make Updates to Your Home

The following updates are also relatively cheap and don’t require much time, energy, or money. Better yet, they can make a big difference in your overall energy use at home. One of the simplest things you can do to create a more energy-efficient home is transitioning to LED light bulbs. They use at least 75% less energy and last up to 25 times longer than traditional incandescent lamps. While LED lights cost a little more, they’re a great investment. Compared to incandescent bulbs, LED lights only cost a few bucks for a pack and they last longer. Your day will be that much brighter knowing you’re saving energy with this simple switch.

Similarly to your lightbulbs, new windows can also save money on your energy bill. After all, certain kinds of windows are more energy-efficient than others. This is because windows are a prime area for heat to leak out, which also raises energy bills for heating or cooling. Depending on where you live, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency estimates that you can save up to $501 a year by replacing old single-pane windows with new Energy Star approved models. Because the new windows have a very little price difference, this is still a relatively cheap transition to make. If you get them installed for you, you wouldn’t necessarily have to do any work.

These are just a few simple suggestions for reducing your personal carbon footprint on the environment, but there are plenty more ways to do so. Making easy and simple adjustments is a great way to start, especially in areas that you come into contact with each day, like your home. Not only will you feel better about the adjustments to your lifestyle, but the Earth will also thank you.

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