PolluteLess.com Logo

Encouraging North Americans to Pollute Less, Consume Fewer Resources, and Use Less Energy since 2007.

(Better Late Than Never).
 
 

 

 

Electronic Devices

Many consumer electronics are little about essential function, but mostly about fashion, status, and superfluous function. Most of us have what we need but we have been successfully trained to believe that what we want (and buy) is what we need. It is up to you to be a responsible user. Your behavior as a consumer and user influences how much you pollute.

The best "green" electronic device is the one that does not get manufactured, transported, bought, and disposed of.

Back

Do this

Because

Level of Change

Live a simple life free of gadgets and electronic devices It may be bad for our economy the way we look at success, but living simply without electronic devices reduces your pollution level significantly. You do not use energy, you are not responsible for the fabrication, shipping, distribution, marketing, use, disposal, ... of devices that you may find are not that important to you.
significant
Ignore latest-improved-version pressure Replacing a product with something you want but not really need results in energy consumption and the use of resources. Not doing it pollutes less.
significant
Buy products that will function a long time Consumer electronics that send and receive information are designed to function only within a network. If the network changes you have to upgrade. That is not done by accident. There is a profit to be made here and those network and support structure changes are common in other industries as well. Stay away from those products. You will never have the latest model anyways. Or not very long. Buy products whose usable life span you can control. Can you still use the product if the company who made it goes out of business or ends the technical support for it? At the very least, buy products that have been on the market for a while and have network and support systems that seem to last.
noticeable
Disconnect stand-by devices If the lights or clock are on when the device is turned off it continues to use electricity. Often as much as a light bulb. Sometimes the device uses more energy when it is off than when it is in use. Unplugging the item ends its energy consumption and pollution.
noticeable
Recycle old electronics properly Consumer electronics are full of materials that are either considered hazardous waste or valuable for reuse. Recycling the devices results in properly disposing off dangerous materials and re-integration of valuable materials in the cycle of production. All results in less pollution. Obviously, not using those devices or at least keeping them for a very long time (and then recycle) is better. Recycling is just a patch to make you feel better and continue shopping.
not enough
Research power consumption of electronic device Not all electronic devices are created equal. Some use more electricity (and create more pollution) than others. Check the (independent) product reviews or the manufacturer's technical manual for the level of consumption of electricity or how long it will run on one set of batteries. Do not forget that if they are made in a country with fewer or less stringent environmental regulations they most likely polluted more during their fabrication..
noticeable
Transfer text to computer in one session It uses less time and energy if you plan and write it on a notepad first and type it all when done rather than using the machine only when you have a thought while the machine is consuming energy for hours. Writers block should not require the use of electricity.
not enough
Leave off printer if you do not plan to print There is no reason to turn on the printer when you turn on the computer unless you actually want to print. But it on a different circuit. Printing takes just a few seconds. Why have a printer run for hours?
noticeable
Turn off computer when not in use Well, yeah. Like anything you do not use. Leave or turn it off. Even unplug it because it may consume up to 50% of the energy if it is just plugged in.
noticeable
If you buy a monitor, buy one with an LCD screen. LCD screens use much less electricity than a CRT monitor. CRT monitors are especially inefficient when they are used in air conditioned environments since the heat they generate needs to be balanced with an increased A/C activity. Now you have two sources of pollution.
noticeable
Talk person to person Use the phone when it is necessary to use, the conversation cannot wait, AND is worth the electricity and pollution.
not enough
Research on web Like all shopping, driving from store to store requires much more energy than doing research on the web.
significant
Don’t purchase from different stores online If you order from several distributors you create more pollution because several packages are going to be sent to you. If you order from one store maybe only one shipment gets sent. You might save on shipping and handling costs and save money overall, even if some items are less expensive somewhere else.
not enough
Purchase locally You pollute less because you avoid the shipping of small parcels. You may have to pay more, but large shipments to stores create less pollution per item than getting them shipped directly to you.
noticeable
Ask sales clerk about energy consumption of a product Asking many questions will eventually result in the idea that low energy use seems to be important. Sooner or later this will be conveyed to people who make product design decisions.
not enough
Plan your life with pencil and paper It may not be easy, but doing it with pencil and paper pollutes much less than with an electronic device that requires energy to run and much more to be made.
significant

 

Back to Tips, Tricks, and Advice