Eight Tips for Becoming a Green Writer
In honor of Earth Day, here are 8 ways that as writers we can be kinder to the environment.
- Think twice about printing. Do you really need to print that email, first draft or entire manuscript? If not, you’ll save energy and trees. If so…
- Print smart. Print on recycled paper made from post-consumer waste and, for everything except the most important documents, set your printer to the lowest printing quality to save ink.
- Unplug. Plug all your office appliances into a single surge protector. When you’re done working, unplug the entire power strip from the wall or switch it off. This will keep your printer, computer and whatever else you’ve plugged into it from drawing power even when they’re turned off.
- Change light bulbs. Compact fluorescent light bulbs are just as bright as your conventional light bulbs, but they run on less power and generally last longer. You’ll save money on energy and on replacements.
- Adjust the temperature. Turn the dial down a few degrees in the winter and up a few degrees in the summer and you’ll save energy and money. If you work from home, stay warm by dressing in layers and stay cool by using a fan instead of the AC.
- Read online. If you’re a newspaper and magazine fan, try visiting the publications’ websites instead of having them delivered to your door. While some sites require a subscription for premium quality, a lot of the content available in print versions is eventually available online for free. Some magazines also offer paid electronic subscriptions that provide access to a full electronic copy of the print magazine.
- Travel wisely. When you have to go to the grocery store, meet an interviewee, drop off the dry cleaning, stop at the post office and take the kids to soccer practice, you may end up doing a lot of driving throughout your day. Instead of making several individual trips in your car, try planning meetings at locations convenient to public transportation, or schedule things so that you can combine trips and take the most efficient route.
- Shorten your showers. If you work from home, you may find yourself skipping showers altogether some days. If this is you, ignore number eight. If you’re a regular clean freak and like to shower every day, save water and energy by limiting yourself to 5 minutes under the shower head.
These are just a few simple ways you can shift your writing and other daily behaviors to save energy and have a positive impact on the environment.
What green practices do you use as a writer?