Where did the summer go? It seems like it was just the beginning of June and now the stores are filled with back-to-school supplies and fall clothing. If you have a vacation planned for the next few weeks, consider these suggestions from the Environmental Protection Agency for these easy ways to reduce your environmental impact.
• Conserve energy while on vacation. Before you leave home, adjust the air conditioning – you will be surprised at how quickly your house can cool down. Reduce the thermostat on your water heater to conserve additional energy. If you leave a light on for home security, use a timer and use an energy saving light bulb.
• At the beach, use old buckets and other items from your house to build sand castles instead of buying new products at the store.
• Be an energy saver at your hotel room or condo. Turn off the lights and television when leaving the room. Enjoy moderate temperatures by keeping the room cool but not cold.
• If visiting a beach or park, be sure to take everything that you brought with you when you leave. Be a steward of the earth and pick up any stray pieces of trash that you find. Encourage children (& adults!) to throw their trash in the proper place.
• Rainy vacation? Long drive in the car? Let your kids use your scrap paper to draw and play games.
If you are traveling outside of the United States, visit the CDC Travelers’ Health website at http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/ for information and health recommendations for US residents traveling internationally. You will find information about vaccines, medicine and other advice for travelers.
You can easily select the country or area of your travel location and see suggestions for your health and safety.
Another interesting link on this website includes Travel Notices. The travel notice section is updated with information about disease outbreaks, natural disasters, mass gatherings and other things that may affect a travelers’ health. Go to http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/notices to see if there are any notices for the area where you will be traveling. These are color coded with these warning levels:
RED Warning Level 3, Avoid Nonessential Travel
YELLOW Alert Level 2, Practice Enhanced Precautions
GREEN Watch Level 1, Practice Usual Precautions
There are many things to consider while traveling or taking a vacation.
Be prepared, be safe, be resourceful and have a great time!
Writer: Michelle Treber, Family and Consumer Sciences Educator, Ohio State University Extension, Pickaway County, Heart of Ohio EERA, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Reviewer: Marilyn Rabe, Family and Consumer Sciences Educator, Ohio State University Extension, Franklin County, Heart of Ohio EERA, email@example.com
Photo credits: Bench at lake shore by arinas74 retrieved from http://www.rgbstock.com/images/vacation/1
Sand Dune by RWLinder retrieved from http://www.rgbstock.com/images/vacation/2