Thursday, July 9, 2009

July's column in Abode: Green Gadgets that are worth it!

Enjoy Betty's July article in Abode magazine here or at
Green gadgets that are really worth it

Far be it from Betty to promote the latest, greatest green gizmo with a hefty price tag and made-in-China label, but I believe your pocketbook and the planet will appreciate these eco-gadgets.

The Smart Strip “is still the best bang for your buck as far as green gadgets,” according to Paige Mattson of the Blue Ridge Eco Shop. Given our love of Plasma HD, LCD, TV, and all things bright and flashy, it behooves all of us to conserve energy in any way we can. This powerstrip can sense when devices are on and off and acts accordingly to eliminate any excess energy drain. Reviews suggest the cost (around $40) can be recouped within months.

So many items in our home require the use of batteries, why not use solar battery chargers? They now come in all shapes, sizes, and options. Ubergreen geeks will love the HyMini which has an option to collect wind power while you jog, bike or ski! Given the wide price range, consider your budget and remember solar power requires some planning and patience.

Finally, two gadgets which conserve our most precious resource:
water. No plumber is needed for the Controllable Flush, a five-part handle replacement, which converts a standard toilet into dual flush.
After all, not every flush needs a full flush. (If it’s yellow...). A two-person household can save 15,000 gallons of water per year depending on your toilet!

The five-minute shower timer is simple, durable and costs $5. Suction cup this (recycled) plastic covered hourglass to a relatively dry area to help you to cut down your shower time. I used mine from the Charlottesville City (free from Earth Day) religiously. Here comes the green confession. I thought I was the queen of the quick shower (me: I'm sure I'll have left-over sand! shower timer: you were just daydreaming of your next Betty idea for at least 30 seconds!) Unfortunately that one wasn't shatter-proof (so check for when you purchase).

Here's to half-flushes and shorter showers!

1 comment:

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