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How I saved 13 TONS of CO2 in one night? Hint, hint. I am sure most of you have heard that replacing an incandescent bulb with a Compact Flourescent can save you 75% of the energy used to light your home. It can last up to 10,000 hours and each bulb saves the CO2 gases going into the atmosphere by 1 ton per the US Dept of Energy. WOW! It takes ONE tree 40 years to absorb one ton of CO2. A family of four in North America generates 110 TONS of CO2 in a year. Outside of North America, that is 22 tons.
I gave a 7 minute talk to Toastmasters on Monday night explaining the effect of the greenhouse gases and warming of the planet due to the amount of CO2 gases going into the atmosphere on an hourly, daily and yearly basis. Even IF you don't agree that this is a problem, you can agree that saving energy will save you $$$. Most people can get behind saving money. My daughter reduced her PG&E bill from $600 a month to $150 by just replacing all of her lightbulbs and putting timers on lights at her home. She now has enough left over to buy groceries for almost a month with the savings. Another engineer friend documented his PG&E bill reduced by 71% due to changing all of the lightbulbs in their home. This recessionary time has a potentially positive affect of having us examine what we spend money on, without thinking. And this is a good thing. We may come out of this more thoughtful about our spending allowing us to have reserves and savings.
For disposal of the CFL's which contain a small amount of mercury our local garbage company recycles. you should check your area for recycling information. ("CFL Light Bulbs are considered Hazardous Waste. If you live in Concord, you can drop them off at Central Sanitation, located in Martinez, at 5019 Imhoff Lane. If you live in Pittsburg, Antioch, etc, you can take them to Delta Diablo Sanitation in Antioch 2500 Pittsburg-Antioch Highway. Both are free drop offs.") The energy savings still overcome the affects of the recycling. Save money and save a tree. Change a lightbulb.
OH how did I save 13 tons of CO2? After my talk, I gave them each a lightbulb to start their efforts. It felt good. AND, the Dollar Store has the PGE bulbs for $1 each. Everyone can afford to change a lightbulb or two now.