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What You Can Do to Reduce Toxic Pollution

Conserve Energy

  • Conserve energy and participate in your local utility's energy conservation programs.
  • Use compact fluorescent bulbs. They give off the same amount of light as traditional light bulbs, but use less energy and last longer.
  • Use the yellow Energy Guide label when buying appliances. Choosing high-efficiency appliances will reduce your bill and cut utility plant emissions.
  • Run dishwashers and clothes washers with full loads.

Your Car

  • Limit driving by carpooling, using mass transit, biking and walking.
  • Combine errands for fewer trips.
  • Keep your car well-tuned and maintained.
  • Keep correct tire pressures and wheel alignment.
  • Avoid long periods of idling your car.
  • Buy a car that has good gas mileage.
  • Use gas stations that have special vapor recovery nozzles.
  • Be careful not to spill gas when filling up your car.

In the Yard

  • Avoid using lighter fluid when barbecuing.
  • Reduce pesticide use by reading and following label instructions carefully.
  • Use biological and mechanical pest controls instead of chemicals. For example, try substituting a mixture of ground-up garlic and onions as a pesticide alternative for vegetable gardens.
  • Use electric, battery or hand-powered lawn care equipment.
  • Be careful not to spill gas when filling up your lawn and garden equipment.

Around the House

  • Choose water-based latex paints for your home. Oil-based paints and varnishes contain solvents that pollute the air.
  • Choose environmentally friendly cleaners. Use water-based cleaners instead of those high in volatile organic compounds.
  • Seal containers of household cleaners, workshop chemicals and solvents, and garden chemicals to prevent volatile organic compounds from evaporating into the air.
  • Switch from chemical-type household cleaners to natural products like soap and water. A vinegar and water mixture works well as a window cleaner.