by Sheril Michael Almeida
Due to the quarantine situation, most of us are spending a lot of time at home. The work from home concept has converted our bedrooms or sitting rooms into office spaces. It is proved that the lockdown has caused global warming to come down a bit. The fact that the increase in the emission of carbon-di-oxide has caused a hole in the ozone layer still remains the same. According to an article published in Business Line- India is the 4th highest emitter of CO2 in the world.
Now we are spending more time at home. We can contribute to saving the environment by making an effort from our homes. Carbon-free homes can reduce global warming to a large extent. This can be achieved by keeping in mind a few simple tips. First of all, replace all your light bulbs with CFL. And if LED lights can be used then nothing can beat it. LED lights not only cause less emission of carbon but they last for many years.
As much as possible sit in a common room while you are doing your work. This lockdown and quarantine have brought families together. So while you are working from home ensure that all of you sit in the common room, except for the times when a meeting or presentation is there. This will ensure less energy consumption and more bonding.
The constant efforts of switching off all the electronic devices when not in use are the key to achieving carbon-free homes. Practice and preach the principle of switching off the TV, stereo Laptops, and lights when you are not using them. Go one more step further here; unplug the electronic devices, because there are certain types of equipment like TV, cell phone chargers that use energy even when plugged. On the one hand equipment like washing machines, dishwashers have made our lives easy but they can increase the carbon output of our homes. Now the best way to reduce carbon emission while using this equipment is to use these devices only with a full load.
The filters of the air conditioner should be regularly cleaned and replaced. Dirty and blocked AC filters will reduce the efficiency of the AC and you will end up using more power to cool your home. This will increase carbon emissions. If the water heater is wrapped in an insulation blanket, the heat loss will be reduced and you can save energy. As far as possible try using cool or warm water. This can be achieved by washing clothes in cold water, installing a showerhead that is low-flow. After a bath, you can dry your hair with a towel instead of a dryer. The best option will be to avoid the usage of AC during these COVID monsoon days. It will ensure fresh corona-free air and definitely less carbon emission.
Planting a tree is most desirable as trees not only absorb the CO2 but also keep your home cool and shady, thereby reducing the usage of AC. If you do not have enough space to plant a tree, think of growing indoor plants like Areca Palm, snake plant, money plant which absorb carbon dioxide and release oxygen.
Go green, also calls for consuming more fruits and veggies. Meats take a long time and more fuel to cook, thereby increasing the CO2 emission. Also eating fresh food gives you the dual advantage of health benefits plus getting cooked faster when compared to frozen food.
About the Author:
Dr. Sheril Michael Almeida is an associate professor at CHRIST University Bangalore. Completed her Ph.D. in General Management Banking area. She has a keen interest in research and writing apart from teaching. Handles subjects like Motor insurance, Strategic Management, and Policymaking, and cost accounting. The recent lockdown and work from home mandate inspired her to write this article.