Sustainability 101 – Lights & Laundry

Let’s take a look today at sustainability tips. Two sustainability tips seem relevant to me. These relate to the overall sustainable and ethical fashion culture, but in your home. You can use different lights. You can wash your clothes more efficiently. These are aspects of keeping one’s carbon output low and pollution low.

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Another aspect of keeping things like those low is the home. The ways in which we keep our homes low in energy cost, but still with comfort. I think that some of the aspects of sustainability regarding fashion relate very deeply to one’s home. Aside from one’s clothing, the home is the next most intimate aspect of our own lives. The home is a reflection of self. A home is a reflection of style. Home is also a reflection of conscientiousness. Conscientiousness regarding the environment. Conscientiousness regarding pollution. And conscientiousness regarding environmental concerns over the next few decades for climate change.

What I want to share in this series are some tips for keeping sustainability are your own contributions to the improvement of the environment. The reduction of harm to the environment. Let’s look at two examples. There are lights. Lights in households. There are laundry machines. The lights tend to be incandescent or CFI bulbs – inefficient bulbs.

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Laundry machines can be old, outdated, and so inefficient. Efficiency as in the cost per load of laundry for washing and drying based on electrical usage. We live in a very privileged time. Living in a wonderfully privileged society. That’s not necessarily a bad thing. But, to me, responsibility comes with some level of a better life, within reason. Better life can imply taking away the quality of life of people that is here now and other places of the world. Or, another set of people not yet born are just coming into this world. All these things matter. All these people matter. Our actions have consequences. Climate change is one example, and lights and laundry are great examples, I think. And they’re easy fixes!

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What about deeper? Sure. You can see this extend into the realm of the home and clothing under the rubric of sustainability. If you look at the incandescent and CFL bulbs, they are typically not very sustainable because they are inefficient, and so environmentally irresponsible. If you refit your house with LED lights as opposed to CFL lights, you can have another, and increase efficiency of about 90%. That’s a great, great increase in efficiency. It is also environmentally responsible. No harmful gases, better and more efficient lights, and lights that apparently can live up to or last long as 20 years. That’s a good thing I think.

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The second thing that can be done is changing laundry settings. This is closer to the textile and natural fibre industry, and to sustainability. If you need to heat water, you need to input energy into cold water or room temperature water. That would warm the water and imparts energy. When using laundry, a cold wash might be of use for some types of clothing or some loads of clothing. That can be more efficient. That can be environmentally responsible.

Some other options to do with laundry might be less desirable, but can help. For instance, we can wear clothes longer. We can wash clothes by hand. But, personally, I wouldn’t want my clothes washed by hand. Why? I like the 21st century. Some other aspects can include the use of clothes lines to dry clothes by the sun and wind. That seems a little more reasonable to me, right? It depends on your level of investment. If a heavy effort, you can go full-throttle on throwing clothes on the line and doing a cold wash of laundry. (Depends on the surrounding area’s weather, though.) If light investment, you can do the cold washing of laundry alone and switch some lightbulbs to the LED bulbs. I think that’s enough to get us started.

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About the Author

Scott Douglas Jacobsen researches and presents independent panels, papers, and posters, and with varied research labs and groups, and part-time in landscaping and gardening, and runs In-Sight Publishing and In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal.

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