Green! Green! Green! Everything is about going green today – green living, green energy, green shopping, green homes, green building, etc. It’s not about the green color, of course. It’s about saving our planet, conserving the Earth’s energy and resources, so that it remains a good place for human kind to inhabit for many more generations to come.
So, what can we help promote green lifestyle on an individual level? Well, first of all, we can start by minimizing the use of plastic bags, which is to bring our own shopping bag when we go to the supermarket. Secondly, avoid wastage of water and electricity. And if you are moving into a new home, why not plan for a green kitchen.
Even if it’s an old kitchen, there’s a lot that you can do to turn it into an eco-friendly, energy-efficient one.
- If you need to replace any electrical appliances, choose only energy-efficient ones.
- The fridge is one of the biggest power hog in the kitchen. If your fridge is more than 10 years old, than it’s better to get a newer, more energy-efficient model, which is the one with a freezer on top. (I know, those with freezer at the bottom looks kinda cool, but…)
- Do you usually defrost frozen food in the microwave? Why not take it out of the freeze earlier and thaw it overnight in the fridge, or at room temperature for several hours, before you cook? That saves energy from using the microwave.
- Go for induction cooker, which is probably the most energy-efficient stove in the market now. They don’t consume a lot of electricity as they heat up by using magnetic field, and the heat is focused in the wok or pot. Therefore the surrounding remains cool in the kitchen. However, induction cooker only works with stainless steel pots and pans. In addition, people with pacemakers are not advised to use induction cookers.
- Other cookers that are power savers include pressure cookers, slow cookers, multi-tierred steamers and thermal pots.
- Use low-energy lighting in the kitchen, such as the super low-energy fluorescent strip lighting, wherever possible.
- Don’t air-condition the kitchen, use a fan to keep the area cool instead. You can also use blinds on the kitchen windows to prevent the sun from shining directly into the kitchen in order to keep the temperature moderate.
- Save energy (and time and sweat!) from cooking by eating more salads and light meals. Good for your health, too!
- Install a solar water heater on the roof to provide hot water to your kitchen. The solar water heater on the roof should be placed as near to the kitchen as possible.
- Have recycling bins ready in the kitchen, so that you can throw plastic, papers and glass items into the respective bins immediately, and need not sort them out later.