Green Pledge for Residents - City of Galena

Green Pledge for Residents


TAKE THE GREEN PLEDGE

I pledge to do my part to reduce my carbon footprint, to lower the impacts of my lifestyle on the environment, and to help make Galena an even greener place to live, work, and play.

                   

 

Take the Green Pledge, and make a commitment to making green, sustainable choices.  Our everyday choices impact everyone, but we have the power to improve the conditions of our environment.  Will you step up to protect the health of our land, air, water, and climate?  The following environmentally friendly actions are suggested for residents who take the Green Pledge.

TIER 1 COMMITMENTS – Easy

  • Participate in the City’s curbside recycling program for aluminum cans, steel, glass, paper & plastics (#1–7). Recycled aluminum uses 95% less energy than producing aluminum from bauxite ore.
  • Recycle CFL bulbs and batteries at City Hall, non-liquid medications at the Police Department, and electronics in the large container at the bottom of Meeker Street (For Recyclable Items, see Electronics and Other Recycling).  Support reuse of valuable resources while keeping toxic materials out of our landfills, where they can pollute land and water.
  • Adjust your thermostat to 78 degrees Fahrenheit or higher in summer and 68 degrees or lower in winter.
 Energy savings can be as much as 1% for each degree set higher in summer and lower in winter. Save as much as $180 each year in energy costs.
  • Replace the most frequently used incandescent light bulbs with compact fluorescent light (CFL) bulbs immediately.  Replace all other incandescent bulbs with CFLs as they burn out.  Consider high-efficiency LED’s as an alternative to CFL’s. 
Save $40 or more over the life of each CFL bulb.  If every US home installed 1 CFL bulb, the energy saved would light 3 million homes/year, save $680 million/year in energy costs, and prevent greenhouse gases equivalent to the emissions of more than 800,000 cars.
  • Go reusable.  Refuse disposable plastic bags and use reusable bags for groceries and other purchases. Reusable “My Green Galena” reusable shopping bags may be purchased for $3.00 at City Hall.  Keep reusable bags in your vehicle so you have them when shopping.  Recycle your existing bags at our local grocery stores.  Plastic bags are made of toxic chemicals and petroleum. They pollute our lakes and rivers (think Galena and Mississippi) where they poison and otherwise harm and kill marine wildlife.
  • Turn off lights and unplug electronics/chargers when not in use.  Set computers to “power saving mode.” Save up to $50 in energy costs per computer every year.
  • Maintain proper air pressure in vehicle tires.
 Improve fuel economy up to 3% or more, save on gas, while making your tires will last longer.
  • Choose Energy Star appliances and electronic devices when purchasing these items.  Over 30% of all electricity use in a house is for kitchen and laundry appliances.

 

TIER 2 COMMITMENTS – More Challenging

  • Bike, walk, or carpool at least once per week for errands or your work commute. Using alternative transportation one day a week for a year can save you more than $500 in driving costs.
  • Reduce energy use for hot water by installing water saving fixtures and showerheads, insulating your water heater and pipes, and turning down your water heater temperature setting. Water heating accounts for approximately 18% of total home energy. Reduce your usage and save.
  • Seal air leaks around windows, doors and other wall penetrations with weather stripping, caulk or insulation. 
Air leakage can add 5%–30% to your annual energy bill. Seal the leaks and save.
  • Discontinue the use of second refrigerators. 20% of all households use a second refrigerator that is typically at least 10 years old, uses over 1,000 kWh, and costs $100 or more annually.
  • Wash clothes in cold water and dry laundry using a clothesline instead of using the dryer whenever possible. 
Heating water accounts for 85–90% of the energy to wash clothes.  Dryers are high-energy users.
  • To reduce food waste, use a shopping list, and prepare only enough food to be eaten during a meal. Meal planning benefits you by saving money and benefits the environment by saving resources. For the scraps that are produced at home, set up a compost bin to make compost by mixing food scraps and greenwaste in your backyard (do  not compost meat, bones or dairy products).  When food is disposed in a landfill it rots and becomes a significant source of methane - a potent greenhouse gas with 21 times the global warming potential of carbon dioxide. 

 

TIER 3 COMMITMENTS – Most Challenging

  • Reduce “vampire” energy use with a “smart power strip” that senses when appliances are off.  When products are turned off but plugged in, they draw “vampire” energy that costs the average household $100 per year.  Across all U.S. households, this wastes an estimated 100 billion kWh of electricity and costs consumers more than $10 billion each year.
  • Buy a programmable thermostat and adjust the temperature overnight and when the house is unoccupied. Save 5–10% of the energy and cost to cool/heat your house by setting the thermostat 5–10 degrees warmer/cooler.
  • Seal and insulate ducts for air conditioning and forced air heating systems and check for adequate attic insulation levels.  In a typical house, 20% of the air that moves through the duct system is lost due to leaks, holes, and poorly connected ducts.
  • When purchasing a new/used vehicle, select models that get at least 20% better fuel economy than your current vehicle.  30% of all greenhouse gas emissions in the US are a result of transportation. 
The City of Galena
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Galena, Il 61036
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The City of Galena is located in the unglaciated area of Northwest Illinois. Our rolling hills, history, 19th century architecture and opportunities for year round outdoor recreation attract nearly a million visitors a year. Galena is a safe, healthy and vibrant place to raise a family, start a business or enjoy retirement. Click here for a short video about Galena’s unique lifestyle.
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© 2018 The City of Galena. All Rights Reserved.