The magnitude of the global-warming crisis can be paralyzing. We worry, we pray, but the problem is so vast that it seems easiest to wait for the big guns—government, international-policy organizations, etc.—to step in and do something.

We can all make a difference, though, especially when we consider that the energy needed to keep the average U.S. home humming generates about double the carbon dioxide spewed by a midsize SUV. A few eco-friendly changes inside your home can make a global impact—and save you money on utility bills as well. (I'm not talking about installing enough pricey solar panels to take your house off the electrical grid—but if you can afford a large-scale project, then go for it.) Plenty of small, affordable changes will reduce energy consumption in your home, and you'll see payback in less than a year. Besides, the psychic satisfaction of knowing you are doing your part to help our environment is priceless.

Eight simple ways to save energy
Credits: photograph by Marc Royce, fashion styling by Clyde Ray Brual, hair by Nathanel Hawkins for Contact, makeup by Jim Crawford for Contact


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