Greening Your Routine: Pablo's Perspective

It's time to green your routine.  That was the mission statement from NBC-Universal for our next Green is Universal week, which is November 16th - 23rd.

During the past two years, we have looked at many different ways to go green and hopefully you have learned something or two along the way.  But when we heard 'green your routine'...we decided to come up with simple things you can do inside and outside your home to make a difference.  Things that you could put into practice now at very little cost and in the end feel better about your contribution to saving our planet. So again - the charge here was 'routine'.  We think we have come up with a good list.

We decided to start things off with a water contest of sorts.  We found two families in Pasadena to help us out.  Each got a water audit and advice on things they could do to try and cut their water bills. No prizes here.  But we will check back with both families early next year to see how they are doing and see, if in fact, by making really simple changes they lowered their water bills.

One of the more interesting stories next week involved what you use to clean your homes.  So many toxins and smelly chemicals that get the job done, but at what cost?  A little legwork found a local company that cleans your home in an eco-friendly way.  The best part is you can hire them if you like or take their simple advice and start using cleaning products that are better for the environment and your families health.

Now, there has been a lot of talk about high gas prices lately.  The good news is prices have come way down.  The bad news?  If history repeats itself, it won't be long before we are paying those high prices once again.  So let's look for ways to improve our car’s gas mileage.  Again, these are simple things like checking the tire pressure and making sure your gas cap is securely tight after a fill-up.  By taking a little extra time to improve our car’s health - we can save money and help cut down on pollution.

Do you like coffee?  I don't - never have.  But I am in the minority, as Americans drink billions of cups of coffee each year.  Now the simple solution is to make your own, if you want to cut down on waste and driving to your local coffee house.  But for many, going to the local coffee house is a social event.  I get it!  Here is the problem.  To-go-cup waste is a big problem.  In fact, cities like Toronto are thinking about banning them once and for all.  The coffee companies are aware and we visit one local shop where they are trying to do their part to cut down on that waste.  Best part is you can help!

Finally - despite an average rainfall last year - state water tables remain dangerously low.  There is a good chance we may see water rationing next year.  So we decided to visit a local nursery to see what you could do this winter to make you garden a little less thirsty.  There are many native plants available you can plant during the winter that will help cut down on your water use next year.

We'll take a closer look at these topics and more during Green is Universal week on the Channel 4 News.

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