“Earth laughs in flowers.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

Home and Garden Resources

The information and resources you need to make your home a sustainable sanctuary.

Tips and Can-do’s

  • Simple Solutions to Help Reduce Air Pollution: There are simple steps you can take in your everyday life to help improve air quality. Every time you drive to work or school, use your heater or air conditioner, clean your windows or even style your hair, you make choices that can reduce or increase air pollution.
  • Cool California: Each household and individual in California has the power to protect the climate. Learn what others have done and what you can do to keep California cool.
  • ARB’s Indoor Air Quality Program: The goal of the Indoor Program is to identify and reduce Californians’ exposures to indoor air pollutants. Learn what you can do to lessen your exposure.
  • Reduce your Carbon Footprint: How to reduce your carbon footprint, hosted by carbonfund.org, suggests ways to reduce your emissions at home, during your commute, at your office, and even at your wedding.
  • The World Wildlife Fund also hosts a page suggesting ways to be more environmentally friendly at home. In addition to some of the topics covered above, the WWF site also discusses how to use your consumer power to reduce your environmental impact.

Recycling

  • Recycling in the household doesn’t only mean cans, bottles, and paper. You can also recycle CDs and DVDs, trophies, crayons, batteries, wine corks, and clothing and shoes. Find out where from this Planet Aid blog.
  • What can residents do to help promote recycling the millions of tennis balls discarded every year? An inventor is working to connect the dots. Let your city or tennis club know!

Home Energy

  • Are you an Edison customer? If so, you will receive a California Climate Credit in your bill, thanks to the California Public Utilities Commission. Throughout the state, all customers of investor owned utilities (Edison, SDG&E, PG&E) will receive these credits twice a year, in April/May and October/November. This payment comes from a California program that is fighting climate change. Your Climate Credit is designed to help you join in these efforts. You can use the bill savings from your Climate Credit however you choose, but you can save even more money by investing the savings in energy-saving home upgrades, including more efficient lights and appliances.
  • The State of California offers rebates for solar energy through the California Solar Initiative.
  • Proposition 39 allocates roughly $550 Million annually to improve energy efficiency and expand clean energy generation in schools. See the Proposition 39 FAQ page for more information.
  • The Community Development Commission of Los Angeles offers home improvement grants to low-income qualifiers.

Transportation

  • South Coast Air Quality Management District’s new Replace Your Ride program aims to get low and moderate income people from disadvantaged communities to scrap older, higher-polluting cars for hybrid, plug-in, or battery-electric cars. Read more in this San Gabriel Valley Tribune piece, including links for where to sign up.
  • This DriveClean.ca.gov website guide can help you quickly identify the cleanest cars sold in California.
  • Bicycles: People choosing to pedal rather than drive usually replace short automobile trips that are disproportionately high in pollutant emissions.
  • Car Scrappage – Voluntary Accelerated Vehicle Retirement: Help reduce ozone-forming emissions by accelerating normal fleet turnover so that newer, cleaner vehicles can be put into use sooner than what would occur naturally.

Water at Home

  • 100+ Ways to Conserve Water, from Water Use It Wisely.
  • Bewaterwise.com, run by the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, provides a watering calculator, as well as water saving incentive programs and water conservation tips for homeowners.
  • Saveourwater.com hosts a number of resources for homeowners looking to reduce their water usage. In addition to news and history about the drought, the site has pages dedicated to efficient toilets, sprinkler systems, and landscaping—the areas that often provide the biggest opportunities for water savings for homeowners.