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Living Car Free Do you live car free or car light? Do you prefer to use alternative transportation (bicycles, walking, other human-powered or public transportation) for everyday activities whenever possible? Discuss your lifestyle here.

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Old 01-21-07, 01:00 PM   #1
gerv 
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100 ideas to save money and the planet

What about a list of ideas that will save $$ and also reduce greenhouse gas emissions? The bike ones should be obvious to most of us here, but I'm listing them anyway. I would also like to know how much money and how much GHG is saved. Problem is I can't find a good calculator. Anyone know of one?

1) Ride your bike to the gym. Most folks drive to the gym, then run around a track to warm up. If you rode your bike, this you eventually might figure out that you don't need to have a gym membership. Save you $20-50 a month. Not to mention the saved gas.

2) Replace all the bulbs in your house with curly compact flourescents. This would drop your lighting costs by 70%. The bulbs are more expensive, but they last longer. The EPA says "If every household in the U.S. took this one simple action we would prevent more than 1 trillion pounds of greenhouse gas emissions."

3) Wear a sweater around the house in winter. This will cause you to turn your house thermostat to 68F or lower. Since heating consumer about 30% of the annual energy bill in northern US and Canada, this should add up fast. You should be able to save at least 10% of your bill.

4) Ride your bike to the library. If you are in the habit of buying books at Borders, the savings here is obvious. Not to mention the gas you don't burn.

5) Wash your bike clothes in cold water. Water heating accounts for 90 percent of the energy used by washing machines. Washing in hot water costs 20 to 40 cents per load.

6) After washing in cold water, hang up your bike clothes to dry. Clothes dryers eat up more energy than washers. Hang them inside in the winter if you need humidity in the air. Hang them up outside in the summer. My wife claims the clothes last longer this way.

Please add your own ideas.
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Old 01-21-07, 01:58 PM   #2
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take after the Brits and drink warm beer Actually when it comes time to replace a fridge or other appliance do your research and buy the smallest and most energy efficient unit to do the job. I took a survey of what was in our fridge the other day and nearly half of it didn't really need to be in there. My wife had been complaining that we needed a bigger one and I contend I want a smaller one

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Old 01-21-07, 02:11 PM   #3
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7) Avoid buying new unless the price/warranty is worthwhile.
8) Don't pay interest on anything, ever.
9) Fix everything yourself.
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Old 01-21-07, 02:15 PM   #4
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10) Move to a smaller house or apartment.
11) Play an acoustic guitar.
12) Bring your lunch to work.
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Old 01-21-07, 05:34 PM   #5
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0) Apply for a minimum-wage job. You won't be short of ideas how save money
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Old 01-22-07, 12:46 PM   #6
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13. Seek out sources for locally grown, organic food. When it's locally grown, there are few carbon emissions from transport of the food. When it's organic, fewer toxins are used in food production. Another great advantage is that your food will taste better.

14. Gently persuade others to adopt sustainable practices. You can make a difference through your conversations and especially through your example.

15. Try to convince your employer to conserve energy and materials. Often the best way to do this is to point out the economic advantages of conservation.
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Old 01-22-07, 04:32 PM   #7
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16. Get rid of your car
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Old 01-22-07, 05:15 PM   #8
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17. Get rid of your home.
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Old 01-22-07, 05:25 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lyeinyoureye
17. Get rid of your home.

And live where?
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Old 01-22-07, 05:31 PM   #10
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And live where?

At your parents
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Old 01-22-07, 06:06 PM   #11
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18) Inflate your tires with recycled air.
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Old 01-23-07, 12:15 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lyeinyoureye
17. Get rid of your home.
I tried this one, briefly, and actually found it to be far more expensive than owning a modest home, as well as unpleasant.

Another idea to save money: buy clothes at thrift stores. (Don't scoff; you can find decent stuff in those places if you look.)

One more: never, ever buy coffee from anyone who calls themselves a barista. Make your own coffee at home. (I don't follow this advice myself, but would have a lot more money if I did...)
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Old 01-23-07, 01:31 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bragi
I tried this one, briefly, and actually found it to be far more expensive than owning a modest home, as well as unpleasant.
Well ya can't just do it willy nilly. I mean, most of the posters on this board probably spend more on their bikes than I've spent on my cars, including gas, etc.... Just because you didn't do it properly doesn't mean others can't!
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Old 01-23-07, 12:02 PM   #14
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Looks like we do not have to invent anything. There are guides already out there:

http://money.cnn.com/galleries/2007/...st_2007/2.html
Quote:
In July, bankrupt Northwest Airlines begins laying off thousands of ground workers, but not before issuing some of them a handy guide, "101 Ways to Save Money."

The advice includes dumpster diving ("Don't be shy about pulling something you like out of the trash"), making your own baby food, shredding old newspapers for use as cat litter, and taking walks in the woods as a low-cost dating alternative.
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Old 01-24-07, 12:33 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lyeinyoureye
most of the posters on this board probably spend more on their bikes than I've spent on my cars, including gas, etc....
You must be thinking about some other board! Maybe road riding?
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Old 01-24-07, 01:05 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lyeinyoureye
I mean, most of the posters on this board probably spend more on their bikes than I've spent on my cars, including gas, etc....
Well, lets see. My current day to day commuter bike, a fifteen year old Specialized Hard Rock was free.
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Old 01-24-07, 01:26 PM   #17
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Lye is referring to me when he talks about people who spend too much on bikes. I'm well over $1K into modernizing an old Italian steel road bike I got for free. Can't justify it on a rational basis but it rides like a dream and fits me perfectly. Lets me climb hills I can't do on my other bikes. Some of the old Campy components went to a bike shop's museum collection, so I guess that's recycling.
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Old 01-24-07, 05:24 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Artkansas
Well, lets see. My current day to day commuter bike, a fifteen year old Specialized Hard Rock was free.
Have you been in the road forums? I bet a few spend more on clothes then I've spent on three cars, four bikes, two motorcycles, and a moped combined!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Roody
You must be thinking about some other board! Maybe road riding?
P.s. That and living car free are forums iirc.... And the board is bikeforums.net. At least that's how I always saw it... In any event, I mean the whole board, as in bf.net. Although, $1000 is enough to buy, repair, and run my pickup/rabbit for a year iirc.
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Old 01-24-07, 05:31 PM   #19
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Use the barter $y$tem!
Don't use credit card$!
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Old 01-24-07, 05:52 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CTAC
In July, bankrupt Northwest Airlines begins laying off thousands of ground workers, but not before issuing some of them a handy guide, "101 Ways to Save Money."

The advice includes dumpster diving ("Don't be shy about pulling something you like out of the trash"), making your own baby food, shredding old newspapers for use as cat litter, and taking walks in the woods as a low-cost dating alternative.
The part about the bankrupt company issuing such brochures is pretty funny, but there is nothing wrong with those particular things it mentions. Dumpsters have some real gems - unless you're too insecure to "pull something out of the trash". Lots of people on this board found some neat bike parts in dumpsters, including whole bikes in perfect condition except for a flat tire. "Making your own baby food"? Well, most women do; people are animals and mammals at that, you know? Taking walks in the woods is always nice if you're lucky to live where there are woods - and going MTB-ing in the woods is even bettah! Now, the part about newspapers for cat litter I donno about... the smell would be kinda... um... revolting?
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Old 01-24-07, 05:53 PM   #21
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Use the barter $y$tem!
Yes. And freecycling groups.
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Old 01-24-07, 07:20 PM   #22
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22.? If you have a backyard, when it's Spring, purchase a shovel($7) , 4 tomato plants($2), some sort of fertilizer($4) and 4 tomato cages($8) and collect about 20-40 lbs of tomatoes in 3 months. They taste better than store tomatoes and you save all the energy that would be used to transport them from California or Mexico.
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Old 01-25-07, 03:09 AM   #23
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some sort of fertilizer($4)
Why pay the extra $4 when I can make my own for free? Humanure is a great resource.
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